When to move them?

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Drone Bee
Jul 29, 2009
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North Yorks, UK
Hive Type
Number of Hives
Great news, I have secured an out apiary. Rape and bean crops, river within one mile, water meadows, SSI and significant field margins plus two villages within 1 mile radius. Secluded but easy / protected access via farm yard + interested / supportive farmer.

So when do I move an established hive for a) optimim winter survival b) maximum benefit next season?

Alternatively I'll keep a hive in the garden so do I leave the girls alone and build up the out apiary next year?

Views as always much appreciated. R
you can move them any time you want, just remember the 3 mile rule. if you move them now try to do at night as it will be cooler and use two straps per hive, dont dross the straps i.e. have both straps going the same direction over the hive. if you cross them, the hive could twist allowing the bees out while being moved ( like in your car or trailer), place them at their new home, unstrap,wait a minute for them to settle pull your entrance blocks away, i use foam and sellotape, at the last minute and walk away dont return till morning.
you can move them in the winter, the only problem i can see is if the quenn is damaged or killed in some way then its too cold to do anything. at least if you do it now you can open them say 2 days later and check all is ok, and have no worries like if they were moved over winter.

some may not agree but this is me being me.

hope that helps.

Sounds like a great site BUT you mention river and water meadows any history of flooding? It might be a good idea to make a sturdy hive stand to keep the colony above minor flooding.
The only thing I would add to the previous posts is when you load the hive into your car/trailer make sure it is orientated with the frames fore and aft - that way they do not "swing" under acceleration and braking and all you have to do is corner gently:)
:cheers2: Mike
Thanks Mike, sound advice on orientation! The only other thing for moving hives (self learn't) GAFFA TAPE ALL THE JOINTS! Good straps hold the hive together but Gaffa holds your nerves together!
Driving wearing full beekeeping kit gets a few strange looks:) Over the last couple of weeks my "apprentice" and I have removed 3 huge colonies - in a ceiling, under floor boards and in a concrete water meter housing. Net haul
150lbs of honey, 2 colonies (one queenright:) and a large nuc also queenright.
The journey home in all cases was slow and careful with bees everywhere:ack2:
:cheers2: Mike