2017 Honeybee Removal Information

Rex Smith’s Honeybee Removal – 2017

If you are in need of having a honeybee swarm picked up, or a full colony of bees removed from a structure – please see the following links for my contact information:  (These same links are in the top menu bar on this website as well.)

Also please understand that most bee removal specialists are overwhelmed beginning in March with calls.  In peak season I personally receive between 30-40 calls per day – and do 1-3 full removals per day.  If I do not answer the phone, I am probably in a hive – so please do leave a message and I will return the call as quickly as possible.

Removal Information:
http://www.bohemianutopia.com/wordpress/?page_id=2

Frequently asked questions (and my answers):
http://www.bohemianutopia.com/wordpress/?page_id=512

Valentines Eve – Joist Space Removal

The homeowners had purchased this home last year, right about the time I’d estimate that the bees moved in (based on the comb color and condition), however the home itself tells a story about bees occupying the space in years past – based on the residue and remnants from wax moth in the space.

During the evaluation of the colony last week, a FLIR thermal camera was used to determine the exact location of the bees.    The yellow is the heat signature of the bees in the joist space below the bedroom.  BEcause this showed that it was very close to the wall, it was decided to access the colony from the outside (instead of opening the floor above the bees)

Before, and during the opening of the siding.

 

 

 

 

 

After opening the siding and exposing the bees, here was the view:

The comb was removed, and the bees clustered back in the joist space against the fire-block.  They were collected, and recombined with their combs of eggs and larvae  at one of the Harmony Hollow bee yards.

The joist space was filled with insulation, then the home was reassembled.

Tawakoni Water Meter Bees

This homeowner had bees move into the water meter last year.  Concerned for the safety of the water meter readers – he called to have the bees removed.

This was 2 weeks ago, and I am happy to report that the bees are doing well after their removal from the water meter, and are now building up for summer honey production near Richardson.

 

What do bees do in the winter?

During the cold months, one of the more common questions I am asked about is:  “What do the bees do in the winter?”.

The short answer is that they “sit in cluster” to maintain enough heat to ensure the survival of the colony.  It is extremely important that the bees have enough food brought in during the late summer and fall to sustain the colony through the winter months when there is no natural nectar flow.  This can be achieved by several methods, such as:  (a) don’t over-harvest honey – allowing the bees to keep their chosen food source for the winter; (b) Supplemental feeding of sugars and pollen substitutes so the bees have some source of carbohydrates and protein sources for their diet.

There is a range of management techniques available to beekeepers – and what works for one beekeeper, may not necessarily be what works for another person.

One method of determining whether the hive has enough food in it is to simply tilt or tip the hive to gauge the approximate weight of the contents.  If it’s heavy, I know there is a sufficient amount of food available to them.  If it’s light – then the bees may have already consumed their winter stores – and may need emergency supplemental feeding.

On warmer days, (i.e 40 deg. F and warmer) – the bees may take a quick “cleansing flight” to swiftly use the restroom, then fly back into their home.

Below are a few photographs taken with a FLIR thermal camera of a hive that took up residency in an owl box.  The homeowner did not want bees in their yard, so had me remove the bees from the property.  The removal was late in the year, so I opted to leave the bees in the box, until spring time.  At that time, I will carefully open the box and transfer the comb and bees to a commercial hive that can be easily managed.  Til then, they will enjoy the owl box.

(Click the pics for larger views) 2 views are shown – and the brighter colors show where heat is radiating through the wood.  This indicates the position of the cluster of bees in the box – and since there *is* a decent heat signature, tells me that the bees are doing well for now.

 

Hive Frames Marked / Laser Engraved Identification

Thanks goes out to BAC Lasers of Farmersville, Texas for providing the service of etching/burning identification information onto the top rails of my hive frames.  Quick service!   Below is a quick video of the first rail through the laser engraver.

(I *really* want one of these laser engravers/cutters for my own projects!!!)

Holiday Shopping – (or Get Your Honey on 11 December in Plano, Tx)

Harmony Hollow will be a VIP vendor at the upcoming Holistic Festival of Life & Wellness on 11 December 2016, selling honey and more.

This event is free to the public to attend!  Plenty of vendors to choose from for all of your holiday shopping needs and wants.  Get a VIP pass for special deals from select vendors.

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If you are needing local raw honey for the holidays – this is your chance to get Harmony Hollow Honey before the holiday cooking starts!   (Or if you need honey for your home-remedies recipes, etc)

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Products available:

  • North Texas Wildflower Honey
  • Beeswax
  • Wood Conditioner
  • Leather Conditioner

 

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Event Link:  https://www.facebook.com/events/1037819252921297/

Holistic Festival of Life & Wellness
2000 E. Spring Creek (at the Plano Centre)
Plano, Tx  75074

http://www.holisticfestivaloflife.com/

Artistic and musical performances throughout the day by:

  • Amie Maciszewski
  • Impending Bloom
  • Bhakti House Band
  • Festival Goddess: Anjali
  • Tribal Evolution
  • Ryan Taylor
  • Lidia Dalidia
  • Daniel KatsüK

Workshops and talks throughout the day:

  • Brook Cheatham:  7 MEssages Your Body Wants to Hear
  • Peggy Breeze:  Ayurvedic Yoga Therapy
  • Thom Allen:  The Peaceful Warrior
  • Lisa Ware:  Goddess Chakra Vinyassa Flow + Reiki
  • Ricky Tran:  Hatha to Raja Yoga
  • Linda Cuyler:  Yoga Therapy
  • Anju
  • Lisa Chalmers:  Past Life Healing
  • Dr Gary A Berman: Getting Out of Your Way and Into Spirit
  • Dr Kat Smith:  ABC’s of Intimacy
  • Dagmar Fleming:  Unlocking Your Success Mindset
  • Terry Malek:  Truth is Freedom
  • Aman Tara:  Stress Management
  • Leslie Dillard:  The Ascention Body – Activating the Divine Blueprint
  • Stephanie Gardella
  • Fran Leigh
  • Rev. Lee Wolak
  • Catherine Cates
  • Brian Kraichely
  • Takeshi Fujii
  • Michelle Welch
  • Jennifer Rae
  • Nik Ceo
  • Swami Atma Paritosh

 

 

Holiday Show – Plano, Tx – Dec 11

Harmony Hollow will be a VIP vendor at the upcoming Holistic Festival of Life & Wellness on 11 December 2016.  This event is free to the public to attend!  Plenty of vendors to choose from for all of your holiday shopping needs and wants.  Get a VIP pass for special deals from select vendors.

If you are needing local raw honey for the holidays – this is your chance to get Harmony Hollow Honey before the holiday cooking starts!   (Or if you need honey for your home-remedies recipes, etc)

Honey_aHoney_Syrup_on_Spoon_226_226_75_s_c1

Products available:

  • North Texas Wildflower Honey
  • Beeswax
  • Wood Conditioner
  • Leather Conditioner

Event Link:  https://www.facebook.com/events/1037819252921297/

Holistic Festival of Life & Wellness
2000 E. Spring Creek (at the Plano Centre)
Plano, Tx  75074

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Late Season Removal

The homeowner has had bees in this house for at LEAST 3 years.  While they have not been a problem for the homeowner, they posed a potential problem for roofing crews who were to replace the roof.  Hammering and activity on the roof tends to occasionally upset bees that are just below the roofers.  😉

A temperature gun indicated that the cluster of bees was in the lower soffit.

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Sure enough – that is where the comb and bees were found.

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There was plenty of comb – stretching from edge to edge around the corner of this soffit space.

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Some of the comb was VERY dark, and tough – indicating that it was aged.

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Once the comb was removed – the roof decking was scraped of all the comb possible, then insulation was placed into the void space to prevent future swarms from moving into the area.

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The queen was quickly found on the brood-comb, and was placed into a clip, and the brood comb added to a hive body for the bees to tend to.

 

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Late September Open Feeding of Bees

A short film of the bees yard activity when open feeding honeybees.  Honey from structural removals is fed back to the honeybees.  This helps ensure that each hive in the apiary has enough food stores to make it through the winter.  When there is no natural nectar flow, open feeding can be used to make sure the bees (a) have enough food, and (b) make the bees think there is a nectar flow, so they will continue to build fresh comb on the frames.

Some honeybees placed on endangered list

At first glance at the articles I have read in the last few days, one would think to themselves:  “What does this matter?  These bees are isolated and in Hawaii – how should that mean anything to us here in the contiguous 48?”.

Easy answer.  These bee species *are* in an isolated area, and thus are easier to track their numbers and effectiveness at pollinating native species of plants as well as agriculture crops.

(CNN Article here: http://www.cnn.com/2016/10/01/us/hawaii-bee-species-endangered/index.html )

and link to original document at the Office of the Federal Register:
https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2016/09/30/2016-23112/endangered-and-threatened-wildlife-and-plants-endangered-status-for-49-species-from-the-hawaiian

The importance is that change has started to happen to protect these native species because an effect of pesticides and other stressors (such as fires and other natural disasters) has been recognized.

The stressors that are man-made or influenced in a way that we can minimize the effect on them, and can either replicate or preserve and nurture both habitat, and external environments that support these species that have been documented as having to be placed on this endangered list.  These factors are certainly not isolated to Hawaii.  They are present in almost every commercial agriculture system in the USA.

Who is responsible for this work?  In my thoughts, responsibility should fall upon those in the circle of influence on the stressors for the species.   The farmers and cultivators that have use pesticides, the marketing chains that push the agriculture systems to believe that poisons on our foods are acceptable answers.  Yes – I do acknowledge that our agriculture system is HUGE, and that they farmers are simply trying to increase yield, appearance, and income from their efforts and land; however care to protect the species that have been on our Earth for eons longer than humanity must be taken.  And lastly – responsibility should fall upon the consumers who fuel the system with the want (or perceived need) for that agricultural product.

Grow your own….  Know your farmer and how they farm…  Eat Seasonally from local producers… and educate on the importance of preserving our fragile ecosystem that humanity seems to have little regard for.

Of relevance – I have included some information from Phil Chandler’s podcast below.

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Timeline of Life On Earth

Numbers and some commentary provided by Phil Chandler – published via Barefoot Beekeeper podcast on 10-9-2014.  Note that some of the figures listed have various dates depending on the source of the numbers that I have found online.  The more recent (bottom of the list) numbers are more accurate, though – as they are closer to our existence and easier to find timiline evidence.

String  48.5 Meters long – and representative of 10M Years per Meter

(MYA = Million Years Ago – Approximate Numbers from Phil Chandler’s Speech)

485 MYA – Appx last 1/10 of the life of the planet.   Aquatic Vertebrates already exist
395 MYA – First Land Plants / Lichens
350 MYA – Insects / Sharks / Sea Faring Plants / Forests
300 MYA  – Beetles / Seed Plants
2.14 MYA – Extinction Event
200 MYA – Mammals appeared
150 MYA – Birds
130 MYA – Flowers (and pollinators – probably including bees)
*** 100 MYA – Oldest known Bee ***
65 MYA – Non Avian Dinosaurs
30 MYA – Modern Honeybees

25-cm from end of string – Homo Genus of Man
less than 2-cm from end of string (appx 200,000 years) = Homo Sapiens
Last 1-mm of the 48.5 Meter Long String – Represents ENTIRE HISTORY of farming

last 100 million years – bees farming the planet and selecting the plants that they use for food.
They have shaped the development of herbivores, as well as the carnivores that eat the herbivores