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Wasps ... what Now?

 
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What Now?
Nurse Bee


Joined: 26 Mar 2012
Posts: 48
Location: Coventry, UK

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 4:39 pm    Post subject: Wasps ... what Now? Reply with quote

I've just been to look at our hives.

Coming out and going into our Kenyan TBH are wasps....!!! Thinner, longer and bright yellow than the bees.

As my user name suggests ...... What Now?? What should I do, indeed - what can I do?

Thanks every one.

And thanks to respondents to my previous post. All very helpful.
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stevecook172001
Site Admin


Joined: 19 Jul 2013
Posts: 443
Location: Loftus, Cleveland

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 4:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've just noticed wasps around my hive as well. I've closed the entrances down to about half their size so they are easier to defend
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1563
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi

Really sorry you are having problems with wasps.

You mentioned on your other post that you think they may have swarmed 6 weeks ago. I tend to reduce the entrance size once they have swarmed as there is much less traffic and the colony is weaker and will therefore find it much easier to defend particularly if they have swarmed multiple times. That's just for future consideration.

Once wasps are already getting in, it is unfortunately, quite difficult to stop them and they can be the death of a colony, so it's really important to keep a regular check on them particularly at this time of year.

As Steve says, reduce the entrance. Now that the wasps have found a way in you will need to reduce it to less than half a hole, probably a quarter if you have circular entrance holes or just enough space for 1 bee to get through at a time and ensure that there are no other gaps anywhere that will give wasps access to the hive. Watch daily to see where the wasps go as that will tell you if/where there are other gaps.

The next step, if they are still getting in the entrance is to put a screen over it. A piece of clear plastic works fine.... I cut a piece off a clear plastic food carton and screw it to the hive just above the entrance so that it covers the entrance and an inch or so all round, then pack it out at the bottom so it is angled out at the bottom and the bees can get out. If you have a 2/3 cork in the entrance hole with the entrance gap at the top and then screw the plastic over it so that it is flush with the hive above the entrance, the protruding cork should pack the bottom out just enough to let the bees come and go.
The wasps can see into the hive but have more difficulty figuring out how to get in. and the guards have better chance of seeing them coming.

If the wasps are still getting in, then you may need to consider blocking the entrance altogether for a day or 2 and/or finding and destroying any local wasps nests you can find. I try to avoid doing the latter as it's a negative step but it depends how much you want to save your bees.

Hope that makes sense. I wish I was able to post photos but I'm not. Maybe someone else will come along with some visual suggestions.

Good luck

Barbara
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jumbleoak
Scout Bee


Joined: 03 Aug 2010
Posts: 295
Location: UK, England, Kent

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, wasp traps.
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andy pearce
Silver Bee


Joined: 30 Aug 2009
Posts: 663
Location: UK, East Sussex, Brighton

PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 9:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

yes jam traps, I think it is going to be a big wasp couple of months. I have them on my hives now, not getting in yet but looking at the amount of corpses outside the hives, having a good go.

A few years ago in an out apiary I watched wasps almost destroy one of my nationals...I moved it in the end.
A
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Amber
Nurse Bee


Joined: 09 Oct 2011
Posts: 47
Location: Chorley, Lancashire, UK

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hello What Now?

Here are two Youtube links showing how to make and fit robbing screens.
Best fitted last thing at night or before the foragers start work in the early morning.

I prefer to deter wasps rather than kill them.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bgrj4V2p6NA

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oi--pJsee30

Hope they help.
Amber
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madasafish
Silver Bee


Joined: 29 Apr 2009
Posts: 880
Location: Stoke On Trent

PostPosted: Tue Aug 12, 2014 3:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wasp traps near hives are an ideal way of attracting wasps TO your hives.

I place mine at least 25 meters away...and round a corner so not within eye/smelling sight.
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