September 10, 2019 at 9:21 am #11993
I am not a beekeeper; there is a hive inside the cavity of the water meter of my house in Northridge CA (I see the bees going in & out of the small opening of the concrete slab). Is there a beekeeper who would like to come and remove them (for free)? Thank you!September 10, 2019 at 11:30 am #11994
How long have they been going in and out of the water meter ?
Months ? Weeks ? Days ?
Free if it’s a swarm looking for a place to live. No comb, no hive as of yet.
If they are established and setting up home with comb that needs to be cut out it’s a lot more involved.September 10, 2019 at 1:34 pm #11996
At least weeks.September 10, 2019 at 1:34 pm #11997
At least weeks. I have not opened it to see if there’s a comb in there! Would a swarm normally be living in an enclosed space?September 10, 2019 at 2:42 pm #11998
Swarms are generally queens and her attending bees looking for a new place to setup a home/hive, or a Queen maybe out on a mating flight, who knows ?
A swarm results most often because there can be only one Queen per Hive (home). Hives sometimes produce extra queens, as a way of expanding the population of bees beyond just there own hive. Queens will also abandon a hive if there own hive has become over ridden with parasites like mites of hive Beatles or wax moth etc. or the Queen May be out on a mating flight, nature’s way of introducing varied genetics.
What Swarms are looking for are hollows, where they can set up a hive. They like box shaped cavities that are about 5 gallons in volume, your water meter box is a little smaller than they prefer. Generally they prefer to be up off the ground, in a hollow of a tree or in the wall space of a house between the 16 inch studs and between the drywall of the inside and the facia of the outside, but beggars can’t be choosy sometimes.
Removing your bees, if they are just a swarm is relatively easy. It could be as easy as setting a bee hive box with drawn out wax comb and bee larvae already to be taken over and attended to and they just won’t be able to resist and they are convinced to abandon the poorer choice for a hive that is/was your water meter box.
But if they already have produced comb, and the Queen has already began to lay her eggs in the comb that is inside of you water meter box, convincing them to abandon that comb and larvae will prove to be a bit more difficult and involved. Cutting out the comb that they have already invested much of their resources and effort into, and transplanting their wild comb into a man made and provided hive box will hopefully and in most cases convince them, but how to do that when the bees instinct is to protect their resources and investment. Getting stung (multiple times) is a much more likely wager.September 10, 2019 at 6:58 pm #12000
Thanks for the info! I certainly won’t attempt to move them myself!September 10, 2019 at 7:49 pm #12001
Well if you need help
Most of us here are willing to come help, but if it turns out to be a cut out it might cost something. If it’s just a swarm willing to just jump from the water meter box into a nicer hive box it probably won’t cost anything.
BTW I wonder how the Water Company has been reading your meter to create a bill to charge you ?
My phone number is 8one8 Two09 49Six7
My name is MikeSeptember 13, 2019 at 7:56 am #12003
Did you get your water meter hive taken care of ?September 13, 2019 at 8:37 am #12004
not yet, I wrote to some beekeepers listed in LA County Beekeepers Assoc and am waiting for them to get back to me. LADWP will ‘take care of’ it for free but their concern won’t be for the bees. Volunteer groups who take care of cats and dogs in need do so for free, so I was hoping someone who is devoted to bees would take care of them for free, especially if they get to keep the bees. Of course I realize and respect that there is work involved, but that is true of all volunteer work.
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