Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Maitland Bee Removal from Owl Nesting Box

Owl nesting box with honey bees
Every summer and early fall, we get lots of calls for honey bees that have taken up residence in owl or wildlife nesting boxes. Most of these turn out to be African Honey Bees (AHB) , as AHB prefer the smaller voids that these boxes provide.
In some select cases, we will attempt a live honey bee removal from nesting boxes. This was one such removal. More pics to follow and more story too!

This is the tree that the bees and nest box were in. About 23 feet high!

Here's the box just after we lowered it. Boxes full of honey bee nest can weigh over 100 pounds! We use a pulley to lower the box and nest safely. Bees and Ladders are dangerous -- Remember, we are licensed and insured, including Workmen's Comp, for your protection!

 Another shot of the box after lowering it. You can see that we blocked the entrance with wire mesh.

 Here the box has been relocated to our quarantine apiary. I just removed the wire mesh and the girls are checking out their new digs.

Owl nesting box at our quarantine apiary in Orlando, FL

 Another shot in our quarantine apiary. You can see the girls' neighbors in the background!

We will move the bee colony into a hive box sometime next week. We call this process "hiving" a colony.

We'll post more pics of that process next week!

Richard Martyniak, M.Sc., Entomologist & Beekeeper

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