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  Topic: Making top bar hive
MikeRobinson

Replies: 3
Views: 5621

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Sat Apr 07, 2018 1:33 pm   Subject: Making top bar hive
We built our hives from found-wood harvested from remodeling a barn. I took the dimensions of those beautiful woodworking pictures in Barefoot, but none of the woodworking. We secured the boards wit ...
  Topic: Overcrowding
MikeRobinson

Replies: 12
Views: 7453

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Thu Jun 08, 2017 2:22 am   Subject: Overcrowding
I would like to kindly suggest that, perhaps, "bearding" might not have in fact been an indication of "overcrowding."

Virtually every day that I visit my hives, "on a muggy ...
  Topic: bees and weather help please asap
MikeRobinson

Replies: 10
Views: 5105

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Wed Jun 07, 2017 2:10 pm   Subject: bees and weather help please asap
Note that if you experienced "swelling and pain for six hours," you might be developing some kind of allergic reaction and you might wish to chat with a doctor about it. (Yes, getting hit & ...
  Topic: How I Built Our hTBH's On The Very Cheap
MikeRobinson

Replies: 1
Views: 2770

PostForum: Bright ideas, experiments and projects   Posted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:22 pm   Subject: How I Built Our hTBH's On The Very Cheap
Yes, I read Barefoot Beekeper. Beautiful things he built. Beautiful. But I'm not a woodworker! Confused So, here is what I did.

I built hives from "found wood" – unpainted boards that had b ...
  Topic: Icing sugar treatment for varroa mites
MikeRobinson

Replies: 15
Views: 11741

PostForum: Bee health: the treatment (or not) of bee pests and diseases   Posted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 3:04 pm   Subject: Icing sugar treatment for varroa mites
I would strongly suggest simply leaving them "bee." Don't open their hive up and try to "manage" them. Bees know how to thrive in hollow trees with no human intervention whatsoev ...
  Topic: Pre-swarm split - how many swarm cells to leave?
MikeRobinson

Replies: 7
Views: 5830

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:51 pm   Subject: Pre-swarm split - how many swarm cells to leave?
... whereas, I would simply leave the bees to their business. Split the hive and let each hive re-establish its own new balance however it wants to. I'm not going to try to "manage" the si ...
  Topic: Mite icing sugar treatment
MikeRobinson

Replies: 7
Views: 5668

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:41 pm   Subject: Mite icing sugar treatment
We have several hTBH hives which supply us with all the sweet honey we require, and they need very little attention or upkeep. We don't "treat" for mites or anything else: we simply leave ...
  Topic: Mold
MikeRobinson

Replies: 2
Views: 3907

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:33 pm   Subject: Mold
If you are re-activating a hive that has been empty, you should scrub it thoroughly with soap and water, and with any other cleaning agent (white vinegar is a good choice) that will reliably remove th ...
  Topic: Overcrowding
MikeRobinson

Replies: 12
Views: 7453

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Tue Jun 06, 2017 2:31 pm   Subject: Overcrowding
"Bearding" is a behavior that I have observed on most of my hives, most of the time. Especially on a warm, muggy day like we have in the summertime around here (today, in fact ...), the bee ...
  Topic: Propolis/Shellac recipe for inside of hive
MikeRobinson

Replies: 16
Views: 23759

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:45 pm   Subject: Propolis/Shellac recipe for inside of hive
(Also following-up on this thread ...) "Does it actually matter?"

I treated the outside of my hives with Thompson's Water Seal, and did absolutely nothing on the inside. Three years late ...
  Topic: TBH materials, Merbau?
MikeRobinson

Replies: 16
Views: 14891

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:34 pm   Subject: TBH materials, Merbau?
Writing as I am from the fairly-temperate southern United States, I can only say that I have spent precious little time poring over exactly what sort of wood I constructed my hive-boxes from, nor how ...
  Topic: To sand or not to sand?
MikeRobinson

Replies: 7
Views: 8512

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Thu Sep 04, 2014 3:15 am   Subject: To sand or not to sand?
All said above. Don't get too carried away with finishes as the bees will always set it up how they want. If you want to see some "rough" work that is successful do a search for Sam Comfort ...
  Topic: Moving a hTBH without help
MikeRobinson

Replies: 2
Views: 5050

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 9:20 pm   Subject: Moving a hTBH without help
Very interesting.

I'm afraid that my solution to the same problem was much more boring: I fastened a couple of metal handles to each end of the box, which by-the-way has no legs at all and merely ...
  Topic: query regarding hive dimensions
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12535

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 9:12 pm   Subject: query regarding hive dimensions
Incidentally: one good (and flexible, i.e. "adjustable in the face of humidity") way to provide an adequate(?) seal around follower-boards is to make them a little bit loose, set them in pl ...
  Topic: To sand or not to sand?
MikeRobinson

Replies: 7
Views: 8512

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Tue Sep 02, 2014 9:05 pm   Subject: To sand or not to sand?
Yup ... the natural compounds that bees use are incredibly sticky. So, in the end, "the quality of your woodworking" (or, the lack thereof) will not make the slightest bit of difference.
  Topic: European Hornets Nest in Apiary - Any action required?
MikeRobinson

Replies: 12
Views: 15681

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Thu Aug 28, 2014 4:42 pm   Subject: European Hornets Nest in Apiary - Any action required?
I dealt with that earlier this year ... by burning the hive-box. Salvaged all the parts from it and put the rest into the fuel-box for winter.
  Topic: Top bar hive.
MikeRobinson

Replies: 12
Views: 16465

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 2:57 pm   Subject: Top bar hive.
My feeling is that, since trees and such don't have wire-mesh floors, but are fully enclosed spaces with small openings, that's what a hive ought to be too.

We can "guess" that we are &qu ...
  Topic: Bee stings
MikeRobinson

Replies: 22
Views: 33113

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 2:54 pm   Subject: Bee stings
Your natural instincts upon being stung might be either to flail and swat at the bees (not good ...) or to run away. Grab that bottle of peppermint-water, set everything else down, and go ahead and r ...
  Topic: Comb collapse and absconding bees
MikeRobinson

Replies: 23
Views: 42543

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Tue Aug 19, 2014 2:42 pm   Subject: Comb collapse and absconding bees
It also helps to have someplace to put down a bar that you're working on. I came up with something that is (as usual for me ...) cheap and effective. Having some PVC water-pipe left over, I fashione ...
  Topic: Oh dear!! No wasps but Wax moth ... python like larvae
MikeRobinson

Replies: 3
Views: 6113

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 2:48 am   Subject: Oh dear!! No wasps but Wax moth ... python like larvae
Unfortunately, in the few times over the years that I encountered wax moths, neither the colonies nor the wooden boxes that they lived in "made it." I considered it a mercy-killing. If the ...
  Topic: Hornets!
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12191

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Mon Aug 04, 2014 12:48 am   Subject: Hornets!
Oh, I can assure you ... there is nothing left of the nest that used to be in that used-to-be wooden box. Smile

Checking again today, the hornets seem to have pretty-much cleared the area, but I am ...
  Topic: Hornets!
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12191

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 2:09 am   Subject: Hornets!
Yep, more-or-less the same here. Smile I don't profess to be an entomologist. All that I really know is that these suckers are big, and that they have a prominent yellow hind-section. They certainly ...
  Topic: Hornets!
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12191

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Sat Aug 02, 2014 9:39 pm   Subject: Hornets!
Thanks. Since the nest was inside the hive, and I could not remove it, I decided to sacrifice this particular hTBH box, which had a lot of insecticide on it also. I'll just remove the screws, cut so ...
  Topic: Hornets!
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12191

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Sat Aug 02, 2014 2:47 pm   Subject: Hornets!
Yesterday, I painfully discovered that one empty hTBH box had been taken over by Giant European Hornets, who had built a nest in there the size of a basketball. The little b**tards "hit" me ...
  Topic: Bee stings
MikeRobinson

Replies: 22
Views: 33113

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 7:07 pm   Subject: Bee stings
When I first started keeping my hTBH's, "shorts and a T-shirt and bare hands" actually worked quite well. As I recall, I got stung once. But then, I realized that what I needed was pockets ...
  Topic: query regarding hive dimensions
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12535

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 6:51 pm   Subject: query regarding hive dimensions
Yes, you absolutely need to make sure that the hive is "tight," and that it remains that way, no matter what the ever-changing humidity might do. For instance, there are two square boards s ...
  Topic: Oil or wax on cedar TBH?
MikeRobinson

Replies: 5
Views: 7321

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:49 am   Subject: Oil or wax on cedar TBH?
A product available here, "Thompson's Water-Seal," will weather-proof any sort of bare wood with a single light coating ... which can be brushed or sprayed on. I used it on the outside of m ...
  Topic: Problem With A Bee Package Queen
MikeRobinson

Replies: 6
Views: 6845

PostForum: URGENT Help needed now!   Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:46 am   Subject: Problem With A Bee Package Queen
If you happen to be picking-up a package at a store, it's a good idea to drop the box onto the table from a height of half-a-foot ... (thump!!). All of the bees will drop to the bottom of the box for ...
  Topic: Bee stings
MikeRobinson

Replies: 22
Views: 33113

PostForum: Beginners start here   Posted: Fri Aug 01, 2014 12:42 am   Subject: Bee stings
It took me a little while to find lightweight beekeeper's gloves which breathe. They're a sturdy, yet washable leather (I guess it's leather ...) with a long cloth sleeve. They're the only "oth ...
  Topic: query regarding hive dimensions
MikeRobinson

Replies: 8
Views: 12535

PostForum: Horizontal top bar hives   Posted: Wed Jul 30, 2014 4:37 pm   Subject: query regarding hive dimensions
It also is possible to simplify those plans, if you are not a great woodworker. For instance, my hives sit on ... cinder blocks, with wood shim-boards to keep them level in both dimensions. (There a ...
 
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Conserving wild bees

Research suggests that bumble bee boxes have a very low success rate in actually attracting bees into them. We find that if you create an environment where first of all you can attract mice inside, such as a pile of stones, a drystone wall, paving slabs with intentionally made cavities underneath, this will increase the success rate.

Most bumble bee species need a dry space about the size a football, with a narrow entrance tunnel approximately 2cm in diameter and 20 cm long. Most species nest underground along the base of a linear feature such as a hedge or wall. Sites need to be sheltered and out of direct sunlight.

There is a spectacular display of wild bee hotels here

More about bumblebees and solitary bees here

Information about the Tree Bumblebee (Bombus hypnorum)

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