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Partitioning a Perone Hive

 
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eussrh
House Bee


Joined: 02 May 2015
Posts: 13
Location: Dallas, Texas, U.S.

PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 2:28 pm    Post subject: Partitioning a Perone Hive Reply with quote

I have recently installed bees into my Perone hive. To keep them from absconding, I installed a divider giving them approximately 1/5 the total space. The divider has gaps around the edges so they can get to a feeder located in the other 4/5 of the space. After they are established, I was planning on removing the divider

https://www.dropbox.com/s/gx72htzf2nm8sba/Hive%20Partitioning.jpg?dl=0

This got me thinking. Why not partition the space? Especially if it will eventually be populated by two or more colonies. From my experience, big colonies tend to swarm in the spring, regardless of how much space they have. Isn't it more natural for them to make their home in a smaller space? I just worry that in the pursuit of "natural beekeeping", we are trying to force them to do something they wouldn't do in nature.

I'm all for leaving the bees alone, but to me that is independent from forcing them to live in a huge mk2 area.

Sorry to ask so many questions, but nobody in my area has tried a Perone hive.

Thanks, Stephen
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mrcadman
Guard Bee


Joined: 27 Jun 2010
Posts: 56
Location: Mael Carhaix, France

PostPosted: Sun May 10, 2015 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have found that placing a colony on standard frames with brood and stores from a nuc will stop them absconding. The bees are still in situ after 18 months. Will be opening for first time in September. Will make video.

I just zip tied the frames from the top bars in the 'bee space'. Very Happy
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AugustC
Silver Bee


Joined: 08 Jul 2013
Posts: 613
Location: Malton, North Yorkshire

PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 11:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Not really sure what you mean by - "forcing them to live in a huge mk2 area". Bees are, or should be free to come and go as they please. My understanding is that the perone hive ideal holds the brood nest as sacrosanct. This is a low to no managment hive system where bees are free to swarm as and when.

In my opinion I think it would be extremely difficult for the bees to manage in such a large space in my region (North Yorkshire, UK) if only because of heat retention. Perhaps it would be possible after a few seasons of a few colonies building sufficient comb in that large space but it's hard to say. A few people down south have had limited success.

Surely the best way for you to ensure you aren't "forcing" the bees to do anything is build the hive and bait it for swarms. If they come then they have chosen that space.
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eussrh
House Bee


Joined: 02 May 2015
Posts: 13
Location: Dallas, Texas, U.S.

PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 12:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

mrcadman wrote:
I have found that placing a colony on standard frames with brood and stores from a nuc will stop them absconding. The bees are still in situ after 18 months. Will be opening for first time in September. Will make video.


Looking forward to the video. One of the nice things about the Perone hive (I think). Is that since you don't have to open it, you don't have to worry about trying to get them to build orderly comb. You can put whatever you want in to get them started. I zip tied some comb from a top bar hive.
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eussrh
House Bee


Joined: 02 May 2015
Posts: 13
Location: Dallas, Texas, U.S.

PostPosted: Mon May 11, 2015 12:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

AugustC wrote:
Not really sure what you mean by - "forcing them to live in a huge mk2 area". Bees are, or should be free to come and go as they please. My understanding is that the perone hive ideal holds the brood nest as sacrosanct. This is a low to no managment hive system where bees are free to swarm as and when.


By "forcing" I mean that we pick the house we want them to live in. If they try to abscond, we put them back. This goes on until they either accept the hive or successfully abscond. There is no problem with them swarming as that is natural behaviour.

When I started this I assumed that the bees would naturally create a huge colony and fill the space. But looking over the literature of what actually happens, it seems the bees create a normal sized colony and then expend a lot of energy trying to heat the whole space.

Figuring the bees know their housing requirements better than me, perhaps there is a reason they have a tendency to abscond.

AugustC wrote:
Surely the best way for you to ensure you aren't "forcing" the bees to do anything is build the hive and bait it for swarms. If they come then they have chosen that space.


I've not heard of a Perone hive being used as a bait hive. I think the normal expectation is that you insert a prime swarm into the hive and hope they stay.

But it is hard to find all the literature, so I am happy for any sources people can point me too. I prefer to learn by what other people have done, than exclusively by my own failures.
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