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Aussies Living Simply

Bee Question

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    G’day all

    It’s raining at last and it looks like it might be setting in type of rain which is the best xmas present we could hope for as we have been fighting wildfires on and off for the past few months, anyhow it looks like I might have a bit of ‘me’ time to have a play around with the bee boxes that I bought on ebay.

    They were very cheap as they had been sitting in his shed for four years and needed a good cleaning,I’ve done that and it was a lot bigger job than I expected but thats ok as it’s just elbow grease my time, I did borrow a pressure cleaner off my SIL which made the job so much easier.

    Now that everything is clean, it looks like a bargain :tup: I was having trouble convincing my wife that it was too good to put in a pile and burn, she can see the value now :clap:

    What I ended up with is; 3 brood boxes with frames(full size), 5 WSP supers with frames, 4 WSP supers without frames, 4 IDEAL supers with frames, 3 IDEAL supers without frames, a honey strainer, a hive tool, 2 small hive beetle(SHB) traps, 3 gal excluders and 10 plastic excluders plus a box full of spare frame ends (plastic) and 25 full size plastic frames complete, all this for $65, we had to pick up so probably another $40 but the most valued thing I got was the info I gained while I picked the beekeepers brain for an hour and a half, all in all I’m pretty happy.

    OK so here’s the question, has anyone had anything to do with the complete plastic frames? do they harbour the SHB? I am only new to this but from what I can gather the SHB likes to hide in dark places which is how the trap lures them, the small holes all the way around the frame are identical to the holes in the traps, it doesn’t make sense to use a frame that appears to be designed to give the little beetles a safe place to hide, I’m not sure I would use them for that reason and I don’t want to give them to someone else and cause problems for them down the track.

    I am thinking of using the IDEAL supers as it will mean harvesting more often so more regular hive checks :shrug:

    I look forward to any comments and suggestions



    Well done that is a bargain

    I thought if you have the hive beetle traps at the entrance that should stop them coming in.

    I had wooden ones in Melbourne and no traps and never had SHB

    There’s heaps of it around here in central Qld.

    I made my own frames out of pine and just nailed the ends together after pre drilling.

    I even made a little car battery operated device to heat the wires so the wax starter stuck to it.

    A block of pine 2 bolts and some wire and alligator clips,it also had a switch made from a bit of tin and another bolt that you pressed down on.

    I sold all my stuff over 10 years ago.



    Where abouts are you? If you have just bought the equipment and have no experience with Beekeeping I suggest attending a Beekeeping Course before starting out.

    You also need to decide whether you are going to pursue Conventional or Natural Beekeeping. The approach is subtly different and also affects what equipment you use and how you use it.

    I don’t use plastic frames in my hives, or anything plastic for that matter, on the basis that when bees start building with plastic in feral hives I will start to use it. In particular, plastic Queen Excluders are a real challenge as they buckle in the heat and promote burr comb.




    Thanks for the replies

    Snags, I have a apithor harbourage trap which I slid in the entrance and a AJ beetle trap between the frames of the super, so far I haven’t found any beetles but I have only looked in the super, the middle four frames are almost full of honey but only about one third is capped, after reading your post I made up my own device to embed the wax and it works well, I have it hooked to a small battery charger, thanks for the tip.

    Woz, I am 125k NW of Bundaberg QLD in a very isulated and remote valley, there are a few small scale (1 – 6 hives) beekeepers in the valley and it was after a friend showed us their hives and how quiet their bees are that I jumped in, I ordered a hive and had to wait about 3 months until it was ready to pick up, that gave me a bit of time to research (I’ve watched heaps of utube videos) and study the book I purchased from the DPI(Bee Agskills)

    I got a bit carried away and when I saw all the boxes on ebay, now I have a heap of boxes all clean and repainted that I don’t really need but they will be good for bartering with and I learnt a lot from purchasing them.

    I think I am ready for a bee keeping course now, I’m a slow learner as I like to take in all the details and thats a bit hard if you know nothing about the subject, I do have friends that have been doing bees for 2 or 3 years and i pick their brain before I attempt any thing.

    I was wondering also about the plastic queen excluders as half of the ones I purchased are buckled as you mentioned, I have them on a flat surface with a weight to see if they will straighten, but again I don’t really need them.

    I still think the plastic frames will encourage the SHB as it gives them somewhere to hide so I will be taking them to the tip, they are clean and sterlized so there is no chance of spreading anything.

    Cheers Kev

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