Tree bee rescue

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jool 

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Got a call from a local school who had felled a large pine tree. It contained a wild nest which I have cut out as a 4 foot log that contains comb top to bottom. They seem of good temper and a large colony. My question is what next?
Do I break it open and transfer, tieing into brood frames as in a building cut out or place foundation in a hive on top and hope that they migrate upward. 20210330_163225.jpg
 

gmonag 

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I'd treat it as an experiment. Either strategy sounds good to me. Personally I'd put a box above, perhaps with some brood in it to entice them up. Then when the Q shows up keep her there with an excluder (trap out).
Breaking it open would be more drastic but quicker.
Could be fun!
 

enrico 

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I'd treat it as an experiment. Either strategy sounds good to me. Personally I'd put a box above, perhaps with some brood in it to entice them up. Then when the Q shows up keep her there with an excluder (trap out).
Breaking it open would be more drastic but quicker.
Could be fun!
Just to say that's the way I would go too. A board with a large hole over the trunk. A brood box on top. Let nature take its course!
E
 

Boston Bees 

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Got a call from a local school who had felled a large pine tree. It contained a wild nest which I have cut out as a 4 foot log that contains comb top to bottom. They seem of good temper and a large colony. My question is what next?
Do I break it open and transfer, tieing into brood frames as in a building cut out or place foundation in a hive on top and hope that they migrate upward. View attachment 25149
Brilliant!

Just make sure the tree trunk is the right way up :)

I think I would leave them where they are and try to get them to go up into a box - maybe a 6 frame nuc brood body if you have one (Maisemore and Abelo do them) given the shape of the trunk ..... though I have never tried this in practice! Have fun.

EDIT - a board with a hole in as others have recommended is probably a better idea!
 

Ian123 

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Can you pick trunk up. If so you could use beequick. Busy atm will check in later
 

jool 

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It weighs about 100kg. Nearly broke me getting it in and out the van. The entrance hole is near the bottom so could coax them up but I like the idea of them moving up on their own
 

Ian123 

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If you want it done in 1 go place a frame of brood in a bb with a few other frames you won’t know what you’ll need till you see the volume of bees. Flat piece of ply crown board style with a rough hole to correspond with trunk cavity. Am assuming you can see comb at top. Simply lift trunk onto board, add bee quick to a towel and place on top. After about 10 min check the cavity, bees should be forced down as vapours drop they may even come out the entrance of the bb. Bees can be reluctant to leave brood but just increase beequick volume or push a few swabs down between comb. You can then split/cut log minus bees and save any brood, honey forget as long as you put some feed on. The board idea is good just put it on, but the bees will need to be visible at the top of the trunk or you could be waiting an age. I’d slip an apivar strip in sooner rather than later as well. Even add some feed to bb. Good luck
 

Ian123 

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Posts crossed......couple of lenths of 3x2, two or three 100mm Screws into trunk each side and 2 people to lift!!!...can you see bees and comb at the top?
 

jool 

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Can see bees top and bottom
 

jool 

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So I made a board to convert tree to national. Brood box with some drawn comb and a super with drawn comb and some honey. Bees where already in the boxes when I put the lid on. Hopefully Queen will migrate upward and lay in nice new wax. Once she is up there I can use a queen excluder to keep her there and what's left in tree will hatch out and move up.20210417_120734.jpg
 

jool 

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I hope this will work. I have extracted bees with a chainsaw from trees and it gets very messy no matter how careful you are. I have done one way cone extractions that bleeds off adult workers from buildings but you have to provide eggs for a new queen as she never seems to leave the nest. Once empty I hope to make a display out of it at the club apiary.
 
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