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  1. #21
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  2. #22
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    Jan 2003
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    Manitoba Canada
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    Naturebee, my intention is not to insult you or your principles, Im just trying to hold you to your statements. It is easy to comment mearly on selected quotes, but bear with me,

    >>Northern breeders often claim their bees fly cooler temps, produce more, gentiler etc. What's wrong with that?

    Nothing is wrong with that, but they are concluding this from specific chosen genetics. I get the impression you are claiming this from mear regression. In that case, You can take any bee from anywhere, regreess it and have a much supperiour bee, just by regressing it. I simply dont by that claim.

    >>I could claim your 9% survival is extrodinary and a little far fetched, yes?

    Far fetched? In my opinion no. I am running wintering losses at average in my area. Normally beekeepers in the area are running losses of 15%, not uncommont to hear the odd 30%, but also guys running less than 5%. Never have I heard of anyone run a average of 50%.
    I winter outdoors, many winter indoors. Wintering in Manitoba is a very harsh climate to bring bees through strong enough to split. Ihave been doing it successfully for eight years now, and never needed packages to make up my wintering losses, yet,..

    >>Trying to use organic methods on large cell from 1991 to 2000 my losses varied, several years I lost 100% but average was 50%.
    >>I keep bees in a rather poor area for nutritional foraging, so IMO this has a large effect on survivability compounding problems

    I dont know how to comment on this. YOu ran nine years with an average 50% losses? I am not familliar with your area as for agricultural practices. Is honey a big business in your area? What are your area averages for wintering and honey yeilds? Knowing area averages allows for better opinions and discussion in relation to outfit performance.

    >>Ferals are doing the best, so I must go where the success is.

    Are they a dark or coloured bees?


    >>the ability to easier recognize good performers and breed from these small cell standouts I believe contributes to my success.

    I dont discredit claimes made of regresed bees ability to tolerate voraoa, I believe in the studdies and beekeepers who are producing them. But I simply dont believe the bees become healthier, better foragers and/or have better wintering abilities, aside from mite stresses, due primarily to regression. These traits come from genetic selections within out current stock. It is not so easy to atribute these claims to regression. I wqish it were so easy. As I remember, and assume you do, many, many, many feral colonies perished due to both mites. Those bees would have been small celled bees, right?
    In my opinion, is small cell the answer for V mite control? Possibly, but I dont think I am going to hurry to change my operation over to it yet.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Winnipeg Manitoba
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    311

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    Hi Ian.

    I'll throw my meager weight to our organic friend here. Small cell has done a pile of wonder for me this year, and as of today, I haven't lost one. I started a neat system for regressing thats painless and cheap. Takes a few seasons but the cost saved to free oneself from Apidontworkstan and the piece of mind that comes with naturally healthy bees makes it worth it.

    Email me if you want any details. If memory served me right we live in the same province.

    honeyb@mts.net

    J.Russell

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
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    767

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    Mountaincamp: naturebee says "A little about Tulip Popular,,, You have 20 days of tulip bloom". Is that true for NY across the wide range of elevations in your area? I would guess that trees spread over a 400-4000 foot foraging range would bloom at different times to give you an effective tulip popular nectar availability of 30 to 60 days? In the NC piedmont we get about 30 days of Tulip Poplar bloom (under normal conditions).
    Triangle Bees

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    I would also like to make sure we don't get loose with wording here. It was stated in the article:

    "Dee Lusby (pers. comm.) explains, "...the aerodynamics change for flight...Bigger bees cannot fly so high as the wind currents even a few meters higher than the normal 15-20 feet make flying unstable for them."

    In 1785, George Washington planted two tulip trees at Mount Vernon. These 217-year-old trees stand about 100 feet tall; the lowest branches are higher than bees can fly. The trees did not produce seeds for many years. To ensure seed from these trees, every year since 1989, arborists with the National Arboretum pollinate the flowers with cotton-tipped swabs from a lift bucket."

    Now Joe, Dee is talking about bee size here. To make a statement like this that another person uses as support in an article should be supported with something. Where is the evidence backing this up? I wholly agree with MountainCamp that there are other obvious reasons why these trees were not producing blossoms. One can carry an idea to the extreme and convince oneself that it is true. Simply no bees in the area works for me as a reason for no blooms. Better nectar source somewhere else also works.

    > Talk to any beek that has visited Dee Lusby. In fact, my friend
    > Dick Allen from Alberta Canada visits often.
    > http://beesource.com/pov/dick/bcjun02.htm
    > All are welcome to come see my bees, although I am not
    > advanced to the state Dee has with her bees.

    Actually it's Allen Dick. He visits often? How often?

    Regards,
    Barry
    Regards, Barry

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
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    1,649

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    Hi Joe:
    While I, Dick Allen, am your friend, I am not from Alberta; I am in Alaska. Your other friend Allen Dick is in Alberta though. [img]smile.gif[/img]

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
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    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
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    There aren't many Tulip Popular in the area of my home yard. There are a few that I know of in the lower elevation and down in the valley along the River where one of my other yards is.
    Most of the hard woods around here are sugar and red maples, red and white oaks, birch, popular, locust and beech. From the front of my house, basically everything that you can see at my elevation and up is the Catskill State Park – Forest Preserve. It is deemed forever wild, no development, logging, no motorized vehicles – nothing so what grows - grows and that is that. On the back side of my house is mostly privately owned and logged for timber, some agriculture mostly hay, some orchards, but mostly wooded and rural.
    The blooms that we do have do extended for 5 – 6 weeks over the range in elevation that the bees at my home yard work. It is interesting to watch the blooms / leaves progress as it moves up in elevation.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
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    "Dee Lusby (pers. comm.) explains, "...the aerodynamics change for flight...Bigger bees cannot fly so high as the wind currents even a few meters higher than the normal 15-20 feet make flying unstable for them."

    I have to take issue with this statement. As I have said I have bees of various sizes and back grounds. But, I can tell you if any of them could not fly higher than 15 – 20 feet regardless of a slight wind or the normal winds that I have, or higher than the tree line around my field at 60 to 80 feet, they would have starved.

    If aerodynamics is based solely on the size of the bee and it’s ability to handle wind, can someone please explain how drones or queens can take mating flights? Hell, they mate in mid air for that matter. They are both larger and less aerodynamic than a worker.

    I have read articles on the size of bees that have made claims as to the pros and cons of both larger bees and smaller bees. The excerpt below is a paper from this site discussing stress and bees, that states the normal cell size of a honey bee to be in the 5.1 – 5.2 mm range. Bees from cells smaller than this can develop development defects.

    “COMB CELL SIZE.
    Unbeknownst to most beekeepers, the issue of the relative size of the cells of honeycomb (and foundation) has been the subject of controversy since the late 1800s and perhaps earlier (Erickson et al., 1990) when, in Europe, the diameter of the raised imprint of the cell on manufactured foundation was 5.0 mm. However, Baudoux, beginning in the late 1800s, conducted a series of experiments which demonstrated that this smaller than natural size induced developmental abnormalities in bees and reduced colony productivity.

    In further experiments, be demonstrated that larger bees with longer tongues could be produced in abnormally large (6.0 mm, diameter) cells. Finally, be purported to show that this increased size would result in greater colony productivity and that the size of bees in subsequent generations would be inherited. Baudoux's latter two views have since been debunked. More recent studies (Grout, 1937) failed to provide scientific evidence for increased honey production by colonies with bees produced in larger cells.

    What has emerged from all of this is the concept that bigger is better - but is it? The current industry standard for cell size on manufactured foundation is 5.4 mm or larger. But the diameter of cells instinctively built by honey bees is slightly less than 5.2 mm (see Erickson et. al., 1990). The difference in cell size means that more bees can be produced per unit area in a brood nest of small cells. This translates into more rapid spring buildup and probably less metabolic energy expended in the production of each bee. It might also result in a shortened time for larval/pupal development.

    Here, the issue of stress must again be raised. Do enlarged cells stress bees just as Baudoux demonstrated for abnormally small cells (see Erickson et al., 1990)? Could nutritional, wintering, disease and mite problems be reduced by returning to natural cell size at least in brood nest combs?”

    My bees work just fine as they are thank you: all differet sizies, colors and backgrounds.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Jan 2001
    Location
    New York City
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    >> "Dee Lusby (pers. comm.) explains, "...the
    >> aerodynamics change for flight...Bigger bees
    >> cannot fly so high as the wind currents even
    >> a few meters higher than the normal 15-20 feet
    >> make flying unstable for them."

    > I have to take issue with this statement.

    So do I, and I have designed actual aerospace
    hardware, so I are a Rocket Scientist of sorts.

    The difference in mass between a "small cell
    bee" and a "large cell bee" would be swamped
    out by mere payload issues (a full load of
    nectar versus an empty honey crop).

    Dee says lots of stuff. It is all interesting,
    but much of it is not in synch with details that
    are firmly known to be true. For example, she
    persists in believing that bees were present
    in North America before the arrival of the
    European settlers.

    Lucky for us the Dee does not work for Pratt
    and Whitney, Lockheed-Martin, or Boeing. [img]smile.gif[/img]

  10. #30
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    Dec 2004
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  11. #31
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  12. #32
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    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
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    naturebee,

    I live in an area heavily populated with tulip poplar and I have closely monitored the bloom dates and duration (as do most beekeepers living in its range). 30 days is absolutely possible, in fact I've recorded it lasting up to 35 days in my area.
    Horseshoe Point Honey -- http://localvahoney.com/

  13. #33
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    Apr 2002
    Location
    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
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    naturebee, you may want to go back and re-read db_land's post, he said he lives in the Piedmont. According to the NC Beekeepers site the average Tulip bloom is 29 days, that is almost 30 by the way. Just a little about Tulip Bloom.

    I live in the Mountains.

  14. #34
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  15. #35
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  16. #36
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    Apr 2002
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    Round Top, New York - Northern Catskill Mtns.
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    naturebee,
    I guess that you have missed some of my other post, so I will put it forward again here.
    I do not and have not used any of the commerical mite treatment, or commerical treatments for anything for over 7 years.

    I have used for the last 4 years used some wintergreen and spearmint oils in my spring and fall feeds.

    I tried some hives with SBB this year, (10). I left them open all winter.

    This past December I tried the OA trickle method, to see how it was done and what effect it had.

    I do wrap my hives, I do this for wind protection and solar gain in the late winter, early spring.
    I found that the vast majorty of my winter loses in the past were late February / March / April before I wrapped and last year when I did not. Brood production had resumed and the clusters where anchored and did / could not move with cold temps. Cold here in late April can mean snow / ice / freezig rain, low 20's or so. Then again it can be in the 40's or 50's.

    I think that one of the problems that there seems to be with beekeeping / beekeepers is that one operation / methods does not fit all beekeepers or all regions. A bee or method that works well in one location may not work well in another.

    All of my hives sit in full sun - year round. I would think that would not well work well in most of Texas, but it works here in Upstate NY. A hot summer day here is in the 80's - 90's are rare.

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
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    >>I’ll choose Ian’s letter. I like him more than the rest of you guys anyways.
    Wow, someone actually like me here,
    >>,,,, Just kidding!!!
    Oh well,

    Here I go agian responding to just certain quotes, so bear with me again.


    >>Don’t get that impression! Well, you can take any colony and regress them and get a healthier colony

    That is the impression you are stating! How can I not get that impression?! Regression will not make that colony healthier. I can understand if you are meaning healthier as in better condition with the presence of varroa, but I think, and keep getting the impression that you are talking much further than varroa.
    You do stand behind this statement dont you?
    (>>They act kinda like a separate breed once regressed. Better health, no dopes needed to keep them alive, flying at cooler temps and better wintering and foraging just to name a few.)


    >>If you try no treatments on large cell in a poor location as I have, you will average 50%

    Again, you are now talking about varroa tolerances. That is not what you have been claiming in previous posts.

    Thanks for the area informational averages and such.

    >>added stress during the time of the varroa crunch. This likely a major stress factor contributing to wintering failures of the past.

    Right. Just as it is likely the major factor affecting the rest of the hives in the country. But your claim to regression was not of this at first. You werent even talking varroa before. As I understood your posts you were talking as if the "larger celled bees" caused you high wintering losses due to its bad traits. And as memory states, you fixed all the bad traits by regressing your bees. That is the statement that I am confronting you with,..

    >>I can only say what I see, I’m not on a crusade.

    I respect everyones observations, it is the key to everyones modified manipulations.

    >>The uncapping hygienic trait observed by many who have regressed comes forward in small cell bees which was not present when the bees were large.

    Is it? Or is it still due to selective breeding?
    Anyone else with extensive small cell knoledge back this up. Not trying to discredit you here Joe, but I am not familiar enough with small cell bees to believe it to be true.

    What does "IMO" mean. Please define it for me. I am as good with computers and it lingo as I can spell,

    The rest of your post is interesting but too specific and detailed. For the small celled ferals to stay truely pure, they would have to be issolated. I dont think, just by mear nature, it would be possible to keep two comingling bee traits truely seperated just by the influence of the drone size.
    Maybe I dont truely understant the concept, but from observation in my hives, My drones arent all of one specific cell size, as my workers are.
    It is an interesting concept, but I dont buy it.

    As I said before, and I will say it again, I simply dont believe the bees become healthier, better foragers and/or have better wintering abilities, aside from mite stresses, due primarily to regression.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    Raleigh, NC, USA
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    767

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    naturebee: Although the average Tulip Poplar in PA (or the NC mountains) blooms for 20 days, not all of the trees within a bee foraging area bloom at the same time. The bloom is probably spread over at least 4 or even 5 weeks. There are many environmental factors that influence this - including temperature, elevation, water supply,..... Also, the shorter bloom period for PA likely means that blooming is more intense (i.e. same number of blooms per tree as a NC Piedmont Tulip Poplar in a shorter timeframe). So the amount of nectar available from any given tree is probably about the same - the beek must have bees ready to collect it.
    Triangle Bees

  19. #39
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  20. #40
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