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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Pomfret, MD, USA
    Posts
    242

    Cool

    Well, the two packages of bees that I have spent the past year planning for and obsessing over finally arrived today and I installed them. I was too busy to be nervous, but it was a very exciting procedure. I decided to plunge right in and not wear gloves, but I did wear a jacket w/ zipper veil. Good thing too, because there were a lot of bees in the air as I installed the first package and they kept bumping into my head. Without a veil I am sure I would have been freaked out. The second package went much smoother. The bees in that one just seemed much more calm. The bees were crawling on my fingers but I managed to escape with no stings.

    That was one of the most fun things I have ever done, and wish I had a few more to install!

    Kai
    In cosmopolitan La Plata Maryland

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,331

    Post

    Glad you enjoyed it. It is a rush. I always feed them with sugar water on the screen until they don't take anymore before I start and they always seem to stay pretty calm.

    Maybe that was the difference between one package and the other. They often run out of syrup on the trip.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Ellensburg, Washington, USA East Edges of the Cascades
    Posts
    61

    Post

    .

    [This message has been edited by Kevin123 (edited April 08, 2004).]

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Pomfret, MD, USA
    Posts
    242

    Post

    Yeah, I sprayed them with sugar syrup, but I don't think I sprayed enough. I didn't want to drown them and perhaps under did it. I think I read here that that happened to someone once.

    I am pleased at how it went. I took pictures of the whole process, but I don't have a website to post them on. I'm working on that. When I get something together I'll send the link. It will probably be most interesting for newbies like me to see.

    Thanks for everyones help and advice.

    Kai

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Leonardtown, Md, USA
    Posts
    235

    Post

    Cuttlefish,

    Congrats! When I got my first package last year, I was so excited, I took them into the HOUSE to show my wife....Definitely not a good idea................

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,331

    Post

    >Congrats! When I got my first package last year, I was so excited, I took them into the HOUSE to show my wife....Definitely not a good idea................

    I always take them in the house. I usually get them the night before and am certainly not going to leave them out in the cold.

    Of course I have an observation hive LIVING in my living room.



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Pomfret, MD, USA
    Posts
    242

    Post

    My wife already thinks I am crazy. Taking them into the house would have been suicide. You should have seen the look on my wifes face when I suggested that my next project would be an indoor observation hive. She said, "You can put them inside if you like, but when you come home from work, they will be gone!"

    I'm going to wear her down on that over the next couple years.

    Kai
    aka Wish the cuttlefish

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Hancock, NH
    Posts
    85

    Post

    My wife already thinks I am crazy. Taking them into the house would have been suicide. You should have seen the look on my wifes face when I suggested that my next project would be an indoor observation hive. She said, "You can put them inside if you like, but when you come home from work, they will be gone!"
    I'm going to wear her down on that over the next couple years.

    Kai
    aka Wish the cuttlefish

    -----------------------
    My wife was the same way when I started last year. Once she saw me working them and coming in without a bunch of stings on me she started to get a little interested. This past winter she asked me if I could make a nuc that she could place next to her garden to help her flowers.

    Of course we have been married for 17 years, and she lived through a lot before I got bees, so maybe I just kind of wore her down

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2002
    Location
    Dousman,Wi.U.S.A.
    Posts
    209

    Post

    Hi All: Installed 7 packages today. 4 for myself, one for the son-in-law who was out of town, and helped with 2 for a "newbee". I picked them up after lunch. They arrived from California in great shape by truck. I have a spray bottle that I fill with syrup. Give them a good misting before dumping into the boxes and they are off and running for the summer. Really enjoyed sharing this with my friend who is just starting. Weather was very good also.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Pomfret, MD, USA
    Posts
    242

    Post

    Well, I released the queens yesterday and I have the sinking feeling that in one hive the queen was balled. When I released her she was engulfed in bees in a ball of about 20 bees and I couldn't see her. I closed it up and am hoping for the best. In the second hive, which has significantly fewer bees, the queen seemed to do fine. There were a lot more dead bees in the second package and I think there may have been some drifting to the first hive when I installed the second.
    I'll check them in ten days.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,331

    Post

    >Well, I released the queens yesterday and I have the sinking feeling that in one hive the queen was balled. When I released her she was engulfed in bees in a ball of about 20 bees and I couldn't see her. I closed it up and am hoping for the best.

    It's a package and they have been queenless except for her for several days now. I would expect the best. They will probably calm down.

    >In the second hive, which has significantly fewer bees, the queen seemed to do fine. There were a lot more dead bees in the second package and I think there may have been some drifting to the first hive when I installed the second.
    I'll check them in ten days.

    Good plan.


  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Location
    Arnold, MD USA
    Posts
    48

    Post

    I also have an observation hive in my living room. She doesn't complain about me watching too much TV anymore. The best show on is in that hive. Maybe the television would win me back if they could do some reality bee shows, or teach bees to play baseball.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Mineral, Virginia
    Posts
    188

    Post

    I have 3 additional packages coming the first week of May; I installed my first two packages, based very largly on info I learned here last year. It was/has been a wondeful experience and I am very excited about my new packages coming.

    Our climate isn't as severe as some of yours, My contribution is when you install your first packages, take time to inspect the hives, enjoy your bees, but do the following:

    1. DO everything in your power to give the Bees plenty of opportunity to get ready for the Winter. This, in my mind, should be your goal beginining the first week, if these are your first hives.

    2. Make a commitment to let the bees keep ALL the honey this first year. I ended my "Season" with two deeps on each hive; nearly the entire deep on each hive was full across with honey, so I took 1 frame from each for myself. I opened my hives for the first time about two weeks ago and 100% of the honey was gone!! They ate it ALL. There is brood and drones all over the place and honey being cured so things are in full swing.

    I read the piece on killing bees with horror. I couldn't imagine doing that and am actually trying to determine how best to manage my now very healthy hives for the coming year. The Organic arguement is junk; My bees are very healthy and so far, luckily I have seen no indications of disease or pests. All I gave mine last years was sugar syrup through June, so mine could be considered "organic".

    Lastly, I must admit 95% of what I have learned about raising honey bees I have learned right here.


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