Bees & Chicks?

Discussion in 'Raising Baby Chicks' started by ecocheapomom, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. ecocheapomom

    ecocheapomom Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 30, 2009
    New Hampshire
    This morning we suffered our first ever chick casualty. I went out to check our 9 week olds in the garage and one was dead. I have no idea why. I am disappointed and was sad, but we have done pretty well up until now. A bit later I decided to put the rest of them outside for awhile inside the baby gate/yard that we use to keep chicks safe while they are getting outside time. We only had them set up outisde for a few minutes when DH heard them fussing and when he went to check on them there were bees swarming around them inside the gate.
    We quickly moved the chicks and then realized that the bees were coming up out of the ground where we had the gate set up. First, do bees sting chickens? Could this be the cause of our fatality since we had them in the same spot yesterday?
    I am hoping that none of them actually got stung today and they all seem fine right now. Other than this I have no explaination for the one that died.
     
  2. BlackBart

    BlackBart Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2009
    I have never seen a Bee sting a chicken. But don't see why they wouldn't.
    A friend had Rabbits dying for no apparent reason. One day she noticed Bees in the cages after the fruit. One stung her Rabbit and one hour later it was dead (the Rabbit).
    The Vet said it was a allergic reaction to the bee sting.
    Who would have ever thought that could happen.
     
  3. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Please--a correction those are not bees they are wasps giving bees a bad name. Aside from the fact bees are beneficial, they can only sting once and die--wasps have stinger designed for repeated stings and use them.

    I suspect the ones coming out of the ground (as well as the ones around fruit) are yellow jackets which can be truly nasty. They have been known to drive cows or horses that accidentally step in a nest/hole to stampede so if enough got at your chick it could kill it. The only cure I know is to wait until dark then find the hole and pour wasp killing insecticide down it and cover it. BTW the old timers would pour kerosene down the hole and ignite it but this isn't recommend--for one thing it can vaporize and explode.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2010
  4. gritsar

    gritsar Cows, Chooks & Impys - OH MY!

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    SW Arkansas
    Quote:I have to agree. We've never had a problem with bees, honeybees, bothering our chicks. Right now the wasps are swarming and even they don't bother the chicks. The worst problem I have seen with insects and chicks is when my 9 week old cockerel grabbed a bee to eat. He learned very quickly that bees don't like to be eaten. He walked around for an hour shaking his head.
     
  5. Denninmi

    Denninmi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 26, 2009
    I have 6 beehives located about 30 feet from the enclosures where I have my ducks, chickens, and turkeys. The only "problem" I've ever had is losing a few bees that tried to get water from the duck's little pool -- the ducks find them delicious little snacks.

    Yellowjackets are what killed the OP's chickens, and yes, they are very, very nasty. I've dealt with them before by using my weed torch -- stick the nozzle down the hole and fill it with propane, then ignite it, whoosh, wait a minute or so and start digging -- torch as you go, dig and torch, dig and torch. Don't stop until you've gotten the whole hive -- by autumn, the paper underground nest of yellowjackets can be the size of a medium watermelon and have thousands of wasps. Of course, you would want to be cautious of the surroundings, and not start a fire. I always keep the garden hose on standby just in case, and I wear my bee helmet when I do this so I don't get stung by any that get by me. It's best to do this either at sunrise or sunset when the wasps are all in the hive.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2010
  6. BlackBart

    BlackBart Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 29, 2009
    Quote:You are correct woodmort and I should know better, as my Father raises honey bees.
    The wasps that stung my friend's Rabbits were Hornets.
    They have a wasp killer that turns into foam and it works really good. Best time and safest time to use it, is at night.
     
  7. woodmort

    woodmort Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Jul 6, 2010
    Oxford NY
    Quote:Yeah that foam stuff works great as it keeps the wasps from flying and is residual so gets the later ones as they come out of the hole. Denninmi is right those nest are huge by midsummer and the larger colony of jackets defend them more. Up to that point they leave anyone coming near pretty much alone until it reaches a tipping point.

    BTW when I kept bees I'd get calls from people to come and remove those big paper wasp nest since the callers seemed to think they were honey bees as well. [​IMG] I'd come but only use it as a way to educate them--just get in my bee stuff, use a wasp bomb to kill the nest knock it into a paper bag and burn it.
     

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