Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 04-08-2012, 16:38   #1
Registered User
 
ebaugh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: On the boat
Boat: DeFever 44
Posts: 525
Bee Swarm

Most unusual thing today. I'm upfront adjusting anchor chain and notice a swarm of bugs...bees it turns out. Best I can tell, the swarm in the picture set up in less than 5 minutes. Exhausted our 3 cans of wasp spray, continued later with water and we think we've gotten rid of most, but not all. All day event! They keep finding different things to get attached to.

Anyone with advice on how to get rid of the remaining bees? We are in Curaçao. They are not especially aggressive, but still not a welcome addition....

Thanks!
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	image-3901056152.jpg
Views:	125
Size:	194.1 KB
ID:	44418  
__________________

__________________
ebaugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 16:41   #2
Registered User
 
Target9000's Avatar

Join Date: May 2009
Location: New Orleans LA
Boat: 74 Westsail 32
Posts: 1,379
Re: Bee Swarm

A queen may have arrived and will draw bees in. Alternatively, if the land is very dry they may be attracted to fresh water sources on your boat.
__________________

__________________
Let your heart tell you where to go, but let your brain tell you how to get there.

Sundowner Sails Again
Target9000 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 16:52   #3
Registered User
 
micah719's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Somewhere in Germany
Boat: OEM, proportional
Posts: 1,439
Re: Bee Swarm

Call a local beekeeper....they may be able to adopt the colony, perhaps even pay you for it. At least supply you with some honey and ever useful beeswax and, yum, honeyomb!
__________________
Ps 139:9-10 If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.
micah719 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 16:55   #4
Registered User
 
ebaugh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: On the boat
Boat: DeFever 44
Posts: 525
Quote:
Originally Posted by Target9000
A queen may have arrived and will draw bees in. Alternatively, if the land is very dry they may be attracted to fresh water sources on your boat.
I think it was a queen and company looking for a new home. No water here...no rain for several days, so that was not an attraction since everything was dry.

This is another picture of the swarm taken only a few minutes after they arrived on the fly bridge Bimini.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	image-3689232223.jpg
Views:	126
Size:	128.5 KB
ID:	44419  
__________________
ebaugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 16:58   #5
Registered User
 
ebaugh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: On the boat
Boat: DeFever 44
Posts: 525
Quote:
Originally Posted by micah719
Call a local beekeeper....they may be able to adopt the colony, perhaps even pay you for it. At least supply you with some honey and ever useful beeswax and, yum, honeyomb!
We just arrived here and not sure if Curaçao has any? No local phone anyway. Just got far enough along to make it to the dingy.
__________________
ebaugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 17:04   #6
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Naples, Florida, USA
Boat: Dean 400, 40' catamaran, Daruma
Posts: 124
Re: Bee Swarm

Once watched a guy pull up on a motorcycle, jump off and with no protection of any kind, sawed a branch off with a swarm on it, asked for a cardboard box and some duct tape, stuck the branch on the box like trying to get butter off of a knife which made bees fall like globs into the box, then he blew into the swarm and it opened up under his breath while he looked for the queen on the branch then shook some more into the box. He then set the branch on the box and said if he got the queen into the box then by morning they would all be in there and they were. He taped up the box, strapped it on the back of his motorcycle and left with all the bees. It was the coolest thing to watch the bee whisperer at work. They turned out to be one of his best hives.
__________________
dlockhart is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 17:31   #7
Registered User
 
micah719's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Somewhere in Germany
Boat: OEM, proportional
Posts: 1,439
Re: Bee Swarm

Worth a try, though.....bees are having a hard time with the varoa mites and GM crops and pesticides. No bees means no harvest and that means Disaster.

A quick Bing search dug up these links as a possible avenue:

Marcel Sommer | LinkedIn
Hendrik Kolenbrander | LinkedIn
GUÍA

This one not so likely, but ya nevver know:
Bee-keeper at work - Curaçao Photos

My Spanish is terrible, but apicultuoro seems to mean beekeeping, and apiterapia would mean beesting therapy. Your internet and Spanish are likely better than mine....go on, I dare you to befriend a Spanish beekeeper, or even a Dutch one....
__________________
Ps 139:9-10 If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.
micah719 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-08-2012, 17:43   #8
Registered User
 
ebaugh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: On the boat
Boat: DeFever 44
Posts: 525
Quote:
Originally Posted by micah719
Worth a try, though.....bees are having a hard time with the varoa mites and GM crops and pesticides. No bees means no harvest and that means Disaster.

A quick Bing search dug up these links as a possible avenue:

Marcel Sommer | LinkedIn
Hendrik Kolenbrander | LinkedIn
GUÍA

This one not so likely, but ya nevver know:
Bee-keeper at work - Curaçao Photos

My Spanish is terrible, but apicultuoro seems to mean beekeeping, and apiterapia would mean beesting therapy. Your internet and Spanish are likely better than mine....go on, I dare you to befriend a Spanish beekeeper, or even a Dutch one....
Thanks for the links. Our Spanish is weak, Dutch non-existent. We found a Facebook page for a Bee Encounter tour with a local number, but have not contacted them.

At the moment, post sunset, they seem to have departed. But I've not climbed up on the sunroof hardtop yet to see if they vacated the top of the Bimini and Radar Arch area. There were lots there in the afternoon. We are hoping in the morning it will be all over! In the meantime, we are accumulating unplanned generator hours on a closed up boat....
__________________
ebaugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 06:55   #9
Registered User
 
ebaugh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: On the boat
Boat: DeFever 44
Posts: 525
After dark, they went to sleep. This was what was left....

The humans won the battles 4-0, but it took all day and into the evening. Still sweeping away the dead ones.

Anyone ever seen this before on a boat at anchor? I feel a little bad, but the Mar Azul has no room for a bee colony!
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:	image-781245427.jpg
Views:	105
Size:	132.0 KB
ID:	44434  
__________________
ebaugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 07:24   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Apr 2010
Location: Newport News VA
Boat: Egg Harbor sedan cruiser 1970
Posts: 829
Re: Bee Swarm

Just use a vacuum cleaner will suck the bees up, no sprays needed.
Most unfortunate for the poor bees just doing their thing.
Bees have been dying off.

http://www.hcn.org/issues/342/16891

For several years here I did not see a single bee. Then last year saw a few honey bees.
__________________
sdowney717 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 07:59   #11
Registered User
 
lenseman's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: South Coast UK
Boat: Hedonist 44
Posts: 52
Send a message via Skype™ to lenseman
Re: Bee Swarm

Quote:
Originally Posted by ebaugh View Post
. . . . I feel a little bad, but the Mar Azul has no room for a bee colony!
Hiya Bob - I used to keep bees in the UK on my farm (40 colonies)

Just to let you know what happened.

The bees had been living somewhere quite nicely when their honey production and storage outstripped the number of places they could keep the honey so the queen laid queen cell eggs for that colony to survive and, with a few thousand bees, they all stocked up on honey and flew away. This is the swarm you had alight on "Mar Azul". In this situation they are totally harmless unless of course you start going in and killing them and they then might start to attack you because they are only trying to defend and protect their queen.

This is how you see photographs of men who have a 'beard' comprised of a swarm of bees. They are totally harmless in a swarm.

Whilst they are resting on your yacht, they send out hundreds of worker bees in all directions and these bees are instructed to 'find' a suitable place to permanently set up home in somewhere dry, dark and empty.

If a bee returns, this bee then tells others of her find and a few bees go and inspect this location until hundreds of bees then go and look. Finally the complete swarm including the queen which has been resting on your yacht will take off as suddenly as it appeared and go in one direction. They can be resting whilst looking for up to two or three days.

A swarm of bees will travel as a swarm at about 4 or 5 mph at about 20 to 25 feet above ground level and swarms will only travel between 10am and 2pm local time. Quite a rare sight and if you have not seen a swarm in flight you have to stop and think for a moment as to what they heck is happening??? Worth getting the video camera out if you get time.

For the next couple of days or so, you will get returning bees who had been send out to look in another direction and they will return to find the queen and all the other worker bees have gone but sadly, the queen and the rest of the swarm do not leave any note or forwarding address telling of the new house they have moved to, it is very sad.

A worker bee will only live in total for about 30 days. After it hatches in the hive, it spends 5 days on feeding duties and hive cleaning duties and fanning to control the temperature of the hive. For the next eight or ten days it will become a hive guard bee repelling all attacking foreigners and other robber bees. During this time, it 'learns' about its location and sun angles as it flies away from the hive a few tens of yards and returns to defend the entrance of the hive.

The remaining part of its life it is sent away foraging for nectar and pollen and it will do this until its wings become ragged and it cannot fly. It will die on one of these missions never to return. When opening up a hive, you can see the bees with ragged and torn wings.

The queen can live for up to seven years.

If you get stung by a honey bee, it will also leave a 'sting pheromone' on the location of the sting on your body. This pheromone will be picked up by others who will then home in on it and try to sting in the same location! Out of choice, they will try and sting black surfaces in preference to white as this is the same color of a bears nose and honey robbing bears have sensitive noses. Bee keepers wear white!

Of course, you have to be very aware of any African 'Killer' Bees which are EXTREMELY aggressive in your area and if you are attacked by them, jumping overboard and stay underwater is your best defense. You must have been lucked with the type you have banished from your yacht. Always best to leave bees well alone if you are unsure?

Best you read the Wiki report on their slowly spreading north from Brazil into the southern USA so they would certainly inhabit your location! THEY ARE VERY AGGRESSIVE AND DANGEROUS, leave well alone!

Africanized bee - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Out of interest, they also have another pheromone which they leave on flowers. A honey bee, whilst out foraging for nectar will alight on a flower and sup of the nectar which is there for the taking. As it does so, it leaves a "I have taken all the nectar" pheromone. It is a short lived pheromone and any following bee on alighting on the same flower will know immediately that the nectar is taken and straight away take flight to find another flower. You can see this 'touch and go' type of flying if you look at a flower bed when there are loads of honey bees out collecting nectar and pollen.

I hope this is of help to you and others who might see a swarm of bees?
.
.

S/Y "Surabaya Girl" - 2DTW3 - Portsmouth UK
__________________
Best regards David de GW6UXD/MM

S/Y "Surabaya Girl" - 2DTW3 - Portsmouth UK
lenseman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 08:07   #12
Registered User

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by dlockhart
Once watched a guy pull up on a motorcycle, jump off and with no protection of any kind, sawed a branch off with a swarm on it, asked for a cardboard box and some duct tape, stuck the branch on the box like trying to get butter off of a knife which made bees fall like globs into the box, then he blew into the swarm and it opened up under his breath while he looked for the queen on the branch then shook some more into the box. He then set the branch on the box and said if he got the queen into the box then by morning they would all be in there and they were. He taped up the box, strapped it on the back of his motorcycle and left with all the bees. It was the coolest thing to watch the bee whisperer at work. They turned out to be one of his best hives.
Great description, cheers for writing it down.

Ange
__________________
AngeW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 08:14   #13
Senior Cruiser
 
DeepFrz's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Winnipeg
Boat: None at this time
Posts: 7,930
Re: Bee Swarm

Quote:
You can see this 'touch and go' type of flying if you look at a flower bed when there are loads of honey bees out collecting nectar and pollen.
In the last five years I doubt that I have seen more than a dozen or so bees. And I used to see hundreds of them every year.
__________________
DeepFrz is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 08:40   #14
Registered User
 
ebaugh's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: On the boat
Boat: DeFever 44
Posts: 525
Quote:
Originally Posted by lenseman

Hiya Bob - I used to keep bees in the UK on my farm (40 colonies)

Just to let you know what happened.

S/Y "Surabaya Girl" - 2DTW3 - Portsmouth UK
Thanks for the detailed description. That was what I figured happened after poking around the net a bit. But I think your description is the best of the bunch.

Perhaps we should have left them alone...but where would we go? I would have needed a new home for the Admiral and our 2 dogs until they left. And I was a bit worried they would discover the large forward fly bridge locker with vent slats much larger than the bees and set up shop in there.

I think you are right, a few bees seem to be returning, maybe 20-30, nothing like the thousands we had yesterday. I'm still surprised though since today it's blowing about 20 with frequent gusts to 30 knots. Tough flight for a little bee.

I don't think these were African bees or I would have gotten a few stings for sure.
__________________
ebaugh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 08:43   #15
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,777
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Re: Bee Swarm

SOAPY WATER will chase em away and spozedly keep em away--this from local souls---btw--IT WORKS!!!!!!!
__________________

zeehag is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 01:54.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.