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  1. what to do with two weak colonies for winter

    I keep my 2 colonies in 8 frame mediums. Both currently consist of just 2 mediums. It was a weird summer, with swarms and supercedures, and neither colony really took off in terms of numbers or...
  2. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    Just a quick update:
    I did an inspection with my mentor last week and we found and marked the new queen in the swarmed hive. :banana: We put her in one of the mediums, moved the mediums to the...
  3. Re: Starter strip of foundation to go foundation less

    I used the same technique to go foundationless. I typically see cells ranging from worker-sized brood to drone brood to really ridiculously huge honey stores, blending in together all on the same...
  4. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    Thanks for clarifying, Mr. Happy. On my last inspection (Sunday), the deep had a lot of empty hatched cells. A few had some uncapped nectar, but they were mostly empty. There were no eggs and no...
  5. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    [Edit]

    Thank you for clarifying, JRG. You're right, upon re-reading you do say the excluder should be removed before putting on the escape.

    [Edit]
  6. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    Solomon, you get a :D just for all the extra info!
    Thanks!
  7. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    You make a good point about the contaminants, Solomon. Thanks for that additional perspective. It would certainly be helpful to know the actual amounts of chemical contaminants with each method, and...
  8. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    Thanks Mr. Happy. I like numbered lists, as you can tell from my earlier reply, so you get a :)

    Can you say more about option #2? Do you mean the order should be like this: MMDDDDMM? (I'm...
  9. Re: switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    Thanks for the advice.

    JRG, My reason for getting rid of foundation is to reduce contaminants in wax and let the bees draw comb at whatever cell size they want - in short for the health of the...
  10. switch to foundationless AND mediums - when and how?

    I'm sorry if this has been asked and answered already ... I did search but couldn't find specifically what I'm looking for. I've been a beek for about 2 months. I want to transition my hives to all...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    That's interesting! Seems like part of this is learning to recognize and let go when a colony is just intent on swarming and there is just nothing you can really do, whether cutting cells or making...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    Thanks Oldtimer for the additional information, which gets back to what I should do next, and not just why I'm in this situation in the first place. :o It does seem that the more I try to interfere,...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    This discussion gives me a lot to think about. I'll spend some time learning about other swarm control techniques. Perhaps cutting out queen cells is typically a wasted effort, but maybe it was...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    Oh, I think I see what you mean: you don't recommend cutting out queen cells, you recommend starting new colonies with them? I see the wisdom in it, but I'm not sure I feel ready for that. I've...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    That sounds like a plan! Thanks!
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    I'm guessing you don't literally mean 'do nothing', as then I wouldn't be learning (which requires making mistakes) or getting any experience to become "expert". But, I take your point and will think...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    Depends on who you ask...its frequently recommended to me by some, and frequently urged against by others. All of whom I respect and trust. :) It can be hard to find the right path, as a new beek. ...
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    Re: Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    Thanks all for the thoughts.

    @ MrHappy: Thanks for the encouragement - though I'm pretty certain she's just gone. I haven't had any trouble spotting her on previous inspections, and those queen...
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    Virgin Queen? Theories? Now what?

    Hiya - I'm a first-year beek. I think my old queen is gone and that I have a virgin queen, but I can't figure how it happened, and don't know what to do next. Here are the details:

    2 nucs...
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    Re: unusual traffic and noise at entrance at night

    Final update: went ahead with my inspection yesterday with a local mentor. He agreed there was robbing but thought this was related to the feeders and confusion/orientation for new hives. He...
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    Re: unusual traffic and noise at entrance at night

    Thanks for the encouragement, mrqb...How do you make use of the old sheet if they are testy?

    I'm hopeful the problem is fixed. I think I'll leave it closed until afternoon and then reassess...
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    Plan to stop robbing

    okay, so here's an update, and perhaps, part of the mystery solved, followed by some new questions:

    After reading about robbing here
    http://www.bushfarms.com/beesrobbing.htm
    I was 95% certain...
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    Re: unusual traffic and noise at entrance at night

    Thanks for the tips, Peter. Why do you say I shouldn't have reversed the boxes? What might be the negative consequences of doing that? I did it at the recommendation of someone on this forum, who...
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    Re: unusual traffic and noise at entrance at night

    Hi delber - thanks for the input. I don't know what HBH is...just googled it: "Honey - B - Healthy" ...some kind of supplement? No, I'm just using plain table sugar in my syrup. Yeah, robbing...
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    Re: unusual traffic and noise at entrance at night

    just a quick update - I just confirmed there are a bunch (50-100?) of dead bees on the ground in front of the 'problem' hive. Haven't looked at the feeder or inside yet... Can I assume it is...
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