Last summer I started off my first colony from a nuc. I got about 60 or 70 pounds of honey (!).
I was convince all my bees dies in the winter & posted as such. My hive fell over twice during the winter. But I've got a zillion workers and obviously a very fertile queen.
I bought 3 more nucs this year. One looked pretty bad for the first few weeks, and I figure the queen had died. I have never seen a queen before, but Saturday I saw the queen in the 'sick' colony (which is now recovered) and in antoher colony. All hives have larvae.
I haven't even been stung yet this year!
Its gotta be blind luck. Maybe they like me, they really like me (?)
I really love to read posts such as this one. This is my first year and my bees are doing well also.
Maybe the area has something to do with whether or not a new colony gets off to a good start. And given a potent queen, how can you lose?
I have had a lucky first season too. Hive increase hasn't been the very best, but honey production has been REALLY good. I have an average of 50 Lbs SURPLUS honey and 50Lbs of brood comb honey in each hive.
Its palmetto honey by the timing and looks of it. Haven't tasted it yet, its not 100% capped but 75% capped. Its going to get mixed with cabbage palm which is another name for sable palm, and mangrove.
Scot Mc Pherson
Foundationless Small Cell Top Bar Hives
I'm sure the area - both where I'm at, and where I put my hives had something to do with my success.
I guess if the weather really cooperates, it makes it more likely a colony will take hold, and although Southern Ontario winters are milder than Montreal winters (where I'm from originally) they are brutal enough to kill off bees.
Anyhow, I had only seen bees when I was a few years old, so I have to credit "Beekkeeping for Dummies" at least a little for my success.