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Thread: Why buy?

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
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    oneonta al.
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    848

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    Clay: I hope I don't open a hornets nest here ,But if I went from 68 down to 8 in 3 yr's I think I'd be trying something even if it was dope,times change things even bees. mostly by man the mite in the u.s. is because of man .(moving bees all over the world & ect,) I don't like the dope either but, I think if we are going to survive in the bee busness we will have to change with the times.I'm sure in the past people did'nt want to take Med- that Dr. came up with and had rather chew on a oak stick or such,shut it was just a few years back when I fussed about a cell phone,less than a year a computer,I think you get my point,I hope I don't offend anyone ,but that is not what i'm trying to ,it's just my way of thinking, Mark

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    crown point, NY, USA
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    971

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    Hi Mark,


    Clay: I hope I don't open a hornets nest here ,But if I went from 68 down to 8 in 3 yr's I think I'd be trying something even if it was dope,times change things even bees.

    reply:

    Absolutely not. It was anticipated from the start to have a 90% loss of stock. No one said it would be easy, actually the opposite. First of all I would be forced to compromise my principles. Then I would undo all the work I have gone through. With others in this area having 50 to 100% loss using chem's I don't see how I've faired too much worse and with survivor stock at that(and making little to no splits to build back up either). Now if I was to turn around and use checkmite contaminating my wax supply which is clean and which I've worked hard to keep clean then have a 50% loss of bees next year anyways due to resistance (got florida migratory beekeepes next door so resistance to you name it is pretty much here)where have I gained? Other than now I have turned my self contained wax supply bad and I know of know way of dealing with coumaphous contaminated wax other than toss it out. Everyone wants to be chemical free but so few do anything to get there. Someone has to do the work. How else would one get a survivor stock other than to let the bees survive? I only get to live once I rather say I tried my best then to never have tried at all.

    regards,

    Clay


  3. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
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    5,071

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    Excellent statement Clay, I am trying to do the same thing you are, only under slightly different circumstances. I am starting with packages instead of established hives. The bees have lived with these problems for thousands of years, its only after we stupid humans tried to fix something that was not broken that we mess with nature and now we are paying for it. I visited an apiary just down the road from me when he had all his palletized hives stored there for a week, and I dont think there was a pallet that did not have a dead hive on it. My uncle went from over a hundred hives, now he has two. The current means of chemical warfare we are inflicting on the bees, are just unacceptable. If something doesnt work, try something else, it's the better mousetrap syndrome.

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    oneonta al.
    Posts
    848
    Clay I commend you for your hard work,I tried to get away from chem- also,but findly gave in due to the heavy loss,so my hat is off to you.It is people like you that will sooner or later find a way to over come things like mites & ect.( sooner I hope),I know there has got to be away.Just last nite I was on the phone with a breeder that sell's alot of bees,he was talking about bees he know's of that has been in tree's & thing's for yr's with no help from man ,also in the last 2 weekend's I have took out several wild hive's.so keep up the good work & I hope you the BEST.,,, your beekeeping freind Mark

  5. #25
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    Jan 2003
    Location
    medesto,indiana,usa
    Posts
    257

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    Clay Id say your going in the right direction and Its amazing that your bees survived, with no chemicals,a long brutal winter,and constant exposure from mites from neighboring hives.When you get your breeding program going and have queens for sale Id really like to buy some.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    mn, wi, tx
    Posts
    174

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    I think you might be nuts. The Russians have struggled through the last 50 years with mites, continually using only survivor stock. Their bees have had continuous pressure to adapt and overcome the assault of the mites without the benefit of medications.
    The USDA has borne the cost of bringing these "50 + year survivor stock" to us and has made them available. Maybe instead of suffering the next 50 years, you could fork out 15.00 for a russian queen and save yourself the next 50 years of misery and loss.
    I run 180 hives all of which have the mites. Last fall I did not medicate the Russians. They had less than 10% loss and infestation levels are low this spring. It will be very easy to do some splits to replace the loss.
    While your crusade may be admirable, it is a road that has been trod through many years by the poor russian beekeeper.

    Maybe you just like the pain, loss, sense of self-sacrifice.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    17

    Smile

    …………..Last fall I did not medicate the Russians. They had less than 10% loss and infestation levels are low this spring. It will be very easy to do some splits to replace the loss……………….

    Make sure you give your splits 100% Russian queens and not your own breeding with drones from the neighborhood.
    As soon as the queens get fertilized from other drones the effect of mite resistant is les and les an in a few years your losses are 90 – 100% and not 10%.
    We made these experiences almost 10 years ago and the interested in queens from Russia are almost gone. We have to many backyard beekeepers and breeding from and with Russian queens works on islands only.
    So be careful with your Russians and don’t make the same bad experiences in a couple of years.

    Alfred


  8. #28
    Join Date
    Dec 2000
    Location
    crown point, NY, USA
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    971

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    I think you might be nuts.

    reply:

    Nahhh........I am :> )

    The Russians have struggled through the last 50 years with mites, continually using only survivor stock. Their bees have had continuous pressure to adapt and overcome the assault of the mites without the benefit of medications.
    The USDA has borne the cost of bringing these "50 + year survivor stock" to us and has made them available.

    reply:

    From all indications I have heard using russian stock may give one an extra year or two before crashing. But that is about it. What about other races of bees? Don't you think that more than one racial type should survive? Not all beekeepers want russian bees.

    Maybe instead of suffering the next 50 years, you could fork out 15.00 for a russian queen and save yourself the next 50 years of misery and loss.

    reply:

    Money was never the issue for me I could fork the dough like anyone else. First I am rather not inclined to work with russian bees although I'm sure they are good bees. There is a difference between what I and the russian beekeepers am doing. First they relied on breeding from survivors alone. With little internal restructuring of the colonies. With my methods equal importance will be layed upon returning the bees cell sizing as reported by early beekeeps and to aid in varroa supression and similtaneous selection of survivor stock. Now the problem was when I began that I could split half regressed colonies but all that gave was more half regressed colonies and a greater work load of comb culling. So I decided to rework all the combs first, a task that should now be done early this season. Now all I need to do is mostly grow bees. I believe that the cell sizing here is what will give the bees the edge. For look at AHB's what make them much different the other mellifera's? Yes they can be hot, but so can't EHB's? It my and some others speculation (lets call it that for now)that this natural cell sizing is what gives the AHB's the ability to survive (with natural selection too) and that it can be duplicated with EHB's also. I was shown by Erick Erickson that bees that were on 5.0- 5.1mm cell sizing did indeed have drastically reduced varroa populations. Unfortunatly Erickson is now retired and never got to continue working in this direction down to the sizing of 4.8- 4.9mm. Now this didn't take Erickson 50 years more like 5, I believe that my goals "could" be attained within less then 10 years. It is possible I could be having a pipe dream. But I dare to dream............

    While your crusade may be admirable, it is a road that has been trod through many years by the poor russian beekeeper.

    reply:

    While I may be on the same road I believe there is a "Y" in this road utilizing natural cell sizing for mite supression. So I wouldn't say the roads are the same.

    Clay


  9. #29
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    17

    Smile

    Hi beeman 202 look what I found.
    http://www.members.shaw.ca/orioleln


    On this website is a picture from a Russian oxalic vaporizer. I wonder why the Russians vaporize their bees if the are resistant against the Varroa mites.

    Alfred

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,797

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    >I wonder why the Russians vaporize their bees if the are resistant against the Varroa mites.

    That's a very good question.

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    The Scenic Flint Hills , KS
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    5,159

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    Obviously because there is no restance to Oxalic acid!?
    I reversed my Russian SMR hive again yesterday. It's been four weeks since my last reversal and insertion of checkmite strip. I inspected the bottom board and only found two mites. These bees have only been treated twice since the package has been installed, last fall with apistan and this spring with Checkmite.
    This is going to be my 'donner' colony, I do not plan to ever use chemicals in this hive again. I should have made that decision earlier, but now I know that they have managed themselves with a very light mite load. I have to give them credit for being a good cold weather flier, and they are building up at a quicker rate than my Italians and much faster than my nasty tempered Buckfast. That must be where all that Bee-Pro and Honey-B-Healthy syrup is going to. Now if I could just get them to produce...
    Bill

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Feb 2001
    Location
    Enfield,Ct.
    Posts
    469

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    Sorry,been away from forum for awhile,Weather finally warmed up.
    M. Bush re.4/9 post:
    Correct,bees can not cross over in the feeder.I believe the partition is wood but all my observations are based on a few slides seen from about 40 ft.As I like to fool around in my shop,I'm thinking of trying to make a couple if time permits.In a 10 frame box,4frames to either side leaves about 3 1/2 in.gap.3/4 x 5/8 x 19" top bars sit on frame rests.Ends 3/4 x 2 1/2 x 9 3/4 w/dado for top bars.Boxed in w/1/4 luan.Coated on the inside w/beeswax.just thinking out loud.

    Clay; Keep up the good work.I'm convinced the only way we'll beat varroa is thru resistant stock.Its been done already with trachael mites by Sue Cobey,Medhat Nasr and others.AFB is being controlled by burning infected hives,brood comb renewal,and common sense sanitation.One of the factors working against us tho is the queen herself.With multiple matings and mating flights to distant drone congregating areas,any desirable characteristics can be quickly dilluted.
    As for myself,I recieved my 50 sheets plastic 4.9 on Fri.,assembled frames yesterday(I'm trying those plastic ends from Better Bee to tell the small cell apart) I'm picking up 2-3lb pkgs this afternoon,fresh off the truck from wilbanks.I plan on requeening later on in the season with resistant stock.Is Bob Brachmann near you? I hear he has switched to Russians.Also going to try bee-lining for feral stock if time permits this summer.
    My other hives have been NWC and russian crosses from Strachan.4 hives treated oct 01 w/Apistan and some fumidil b.100% survival.I split all 4,treated all 8 Oct.02 w/Apistan only after seeing severe mite drop.Way to many to count,Crashing before my eyes.PMS in onehive.Lost that one in Nov.but not before it was robbed by other hives in that yard.Lost those 3 this winter.My other yard 3 of 4 survived but only with a handful of bees each.2NWCand 1 russian.Will try to breed from each. Sometimes it feels like a bee hive is just a box on the ground to throw money into.All beekeepers have to be optimists,every spring is a new season.
    Did anyone else see the abstract on pg 322 of aprils ABJ(#18) where Medhat Nasr found coumaphos(Checkmite)in 83%of samples from N.J.in 2001?Also correlation between coumaphos residues in wax and queen failure.Time to get off the wagon!!!

    Jack


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