Results 1 to 18 of 18
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    856

    Default Single year hives vs. overwintering

    It's just to bad you didn't need the bees in the fall when I'll shaking mine. I shake 6-8 pounds of bees out of my hive in the fall. I would give you a great price per pound.
    good luck,
    Ron

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Granby, CT
    Posts
    547

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Honey Householder View Post
    It's just to bad you didn't need the bees in the fall when I'll shaking mine. I shake 6-8 pounds of bees out of my hive in the fall. I would give you a great price per pound.
    good luck,
    Ron
    What do you do with those bees in the fall Ron and the brood that is left?

    Gilman

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    856

    Default bees by the pound in the fall.

    Well Gilman, I gave a whole semi load of bees last fall to a guy that buys honey off me. So are you looking for some honey or just FREE BEES. Free bees cost me to much, been there none that.
    Ron

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Granby, CT
    Posts
    547

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Honey Householder View Post
    Well Gilman, I gave a whole semi load of bees last fall to a guy that buys honey off me. So are you looking for some honey or just FREE BEES. Free bees cost me to much, been there none that.
    Ron
    I am not looking for bees or honey just trying to understand you way of beekeeping.
    Most of the beekeepers work to overwinter their colonies. From what I understand you don't overwinter anything, you shake the bees in the fall and I suppose save the equipment and restock them with packages the next spring. Can you elaborate on that please?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    856

    Default Bee Economies

    I only work my bees one year. No pesticides and no chemicals = more money for cosmetic grade beeswax.
    Let me do the math for you. You winter bees over with about 65 lbs.@$1.50 per lbs= $97.50 per hive.
    You buy a 2# package with fresh new queen and 2 gals of HFC to get things going in the spring. Package + HFC =$48.00 I just made $49.50 by buying new bees in the spring and not paying to feed them all winter. Now take the $49.50 x 700= $34,650.00 nice bonus. I have no pesticide cost, so that $3,000 stays in my packet too. I've been in the business for over 25 years, can you tell me how to make better money. This is better then any stock market or bank. Don't get me wrong I love working the bees or having the bees work for me. This is what I do to make a living, it is not a hobbie.
    I hope this helps,
    Ron

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Devils Lake, North Dakota
    Posts
    9,123

    Default

    Ron,

    Not to long ago everyone up here killed off their
    bees. Just the way it was done.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Troupsburg, NY
    Posts
    4,074

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Honey Householder View Post
    Well Gilman, I gave a whole semi load of bees last fall to a guy that buys honey off me. So are you looking for some honey or just FREE BEES. Free bees cost me to much, been there none that.
    Ron
    I like free bees.... Sent ya a pm.
    "I reject your reality, and substitute my own." Adam Savage

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hillsboro, Wisconsin, USA
    Posts
    1,672

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Sundance View Post
    Ron,

    Not to long ago everyone up here killed off their
    bees. Just the way it was done.
    I kill mine off too - just slowly and humanely during the winter...

    MM

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Granby, CT
    Posts
    547

    Default

    When do you shake your bees and there is any way some one can use them?
    September October may be probably the latest someone on northeast can use those bees.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Owen, WI, USA
    Posts
    2,552

    Default

    Hi Ron
    Your economic model makes those that overwinter seem foolish indeed but I don't think the economics are quite so cut and dried as you present. .
    I understand the logic of working your bees in this manner and know several beeks that do as you do, but the economics you put forth don't reflect the way most commercial operators winter their bees. Most pull that 65# of honey and feed them back HFCS. So that $97.50 or a majority of it would still be in your pocket and your overwintering feed costs would be under $20.
    I understand there is still the issue and costs of treatments and requeening. This is assuming you are able to keep them alive over winter, some have a tougher time than others, still, a normal winter loss needs to be accounted for. In addition you could be selling those bees as blow bees so another plus on the side of the balance sheet in favor of shaking them out, but the true economics are not so overwhelmingly in favor of that as you are suggesting.
    Sheri

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Swalwell, AB
    Posts
    579

    Default

    One of the factors to consider is risk.

    Overwintering can be riskier than running package bees -- assuming that there continues to be a certain and commited supply of packages and queens.

    Up here, in the Great White North, most commercials winter their bees and use packages to make up the losses. Some make nucs a year ahead for that purpose, but in any case, a wintering operation is much more complex and requires more expertise and investment. Many found that out when our border closed to US packages and went out of business.

    A purely package operation is far simpler and can be a seasonal activity, with rapid cash turnover, whereas, for most, wintering extends the season by many months in spring and fall and increases the investment without a corresponding increase in income.

    As always, there are exceptions.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lake county, Indiana 46408-4109
    Posts
    3,536

    Default ? for THH

    What do you do with the brood left in the hives??
    Ed, KA9CTT profanity is IGNORANCE made audible
    you can`t fix stupid not even with duct tape

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Owen, WI, USA
    Posts
    2,552

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by honeyman46408 View Post
    What do you do with the brood left in the hives??
    Typically, the bees are shook out into a snow bank later in the year when there is no brood.
    In the U.S. this is becoming more rare as there is a demand for bees in the fall for almonds. Someone will usually shake them into their own boxes or even take the entire original colony out west. The problem with shaking these bees for fall use is that their health has not been monitored; they are often loaded with mites and what have you and need to be medicated to make the winter. If shook out too late no amount of treatment will help, they have been neglected too long and are too far gone.

    Allen, I am confused by your post. If those overwintering and replacing their losses with packages had trouble when the border closed, why is replacing EVERYTHING with packages easier?
    Sheri

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    856

    Default Cleaning out the old brood.

    Quote Originally Posted by honeyman46408 View Post
    What do you do with the brood left in the hives??
    By the time I go to shaking the bees in the end of Sept. Most of the queens have alreadly slow down production, and lack of food the bees cut most brood out. I bring all my hive body in and clean them up in the winter time. If their is any brood left I blow it out with air, before filling my frame with HFC.

    Each year I try and learn something new or a better way of beekeeping. If I didn't I wouldn't bee in business.

    Last year was the first year I let a guy come in and shake my bees from my boxes to his. He truck a whole load to FL. where he wintered them. No feedback on how he did, and what his cost was.

    I would love to work a deal with someone in the south that would want the bees in the fall. For new bees in the spring.

    Any takers,

    Ron

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Wheatfield, IN
    Posts
    2,069

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by The Honey Householder View Post

    I would love to work a deal with someone in the south that would want the bees in the fall. For new bees in the spring.

    Any takers,

    Ron
    Are you suggesting you'd like to make a trade? Give them fall bees they give you spring bees?

    Who wouldn't like that deal? You've just offloaded your winter loss risk (mites, disease, feed, weather) for no cost to you!

    At a minimum I'd expect fall bees to be at a significant discount and spring bees to be at a nice premium for that trade to come even remotely close to being a decent trade. Say assuming some value for winter loss and cost of feed for fall bess. I give you X # of lbs of bees in fall and get back X minus some percentage of expected loss/cost in spring).
    Dan Williamson
    B&C Honey Farm http://www.flickr.com/photos/9848229@N05/

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    856

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Williamson View Post
    Are you suggesting you'd like to make a trade? Give them fall bees they give you spring bees?

    Who wouldn't like that deal? You've just offloaded your winter loss risk (mites, disease, feed, weather) for no cost to you!

    At a minimum I'd expect fall bees to be at a significant discount and spring bees to be at a nice premium for that trade to come even remotely close to being a decent trade. Say assuming some value for winter loss and cost of feed for fall bess. I give you X # of lbs of bees in fall and get back X minus some percentage of expected loss/cost in spring).
    What would be a fair trade for fall bees and spring bees. Most of my hives have 6-8 pounds of bees in fall and only need 2# to get start in the spring.

    Anyone,
    Ron

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Owen, WI, USA
    Posts
    2,552

    Default

    Ron asks "What would be a fair trade for fall bees and spring bees?"

    Ron,
    We have been paying $10 a colony in the fall for blow bees, but we then need to put meds to them, and often need to combine them to get paid in California. We sell 2# packages (over 10) for $52 minus the purchased queen, so have about $35 worth of our bees in a package. We do all the labor of shaking the bees on both end. Don't know if you'd consider that fair, but by these rough figures, that would be about 3 of your fall colonies for a package.
    As others have suggested, fall bees are not worth as much as spring ones, never have been, and especially not ones left untreated for mites or nosema to possibly run rampant in.
    Sheri

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    856

    Big Grin

    Sheri,
    So your telling me a gave away about $5500.00 of bees away last year.
    That could have bought me 150 package this spring.
    This is what I mean by making changes. It sounds like I'll have bees for sale in the fall.
    Maybe I can do it like barries, instead of you pick and pay by the pound. You shake and pay by the pound.

    Thanks,
    Ron

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads