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Thread: Long Creek

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    UP michigan
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    Default Long Creek

    I got my two packages of Russians from Long Creek yesterday. Only took two days to get here and they look great. They left a phone message when they were shipped which was nice.

    Camp
    As wonderful as this life is, there are days I really look forward to the next. :)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
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    vernon,Wisconsin,usa
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    Default

    I have been on the phone with this place at least once a week since the first week of May When I ordered mine in Oct. 2008, they told me they would ship the first week of May. Every week this guy tells me they are going to ship. They don't come, I call & he gives me a new line...the queens aren't bred, it's raining, it's cold, they are behind. Well, I am in WI & if I don't get them soon it won't hardly be worth my time to even start them! I will have to feed all summer at this rate & hope they build up enough for winter. I understand that weather & everything else plays a part, but this is ridiculous Today he said he had to ship out a bunch of last year's orders, which I understand, but when I made my order in Oct, it would have been nice if they would have said that they would probably be late. Instead he has given me every excuse under the sun. Supposedly they are shipping on Wed this week...we will see. Hopefully I don't have to call on Friday & ask him well, what's the story this week. It is nice to hear some good reports about this place, because I am getting pretty skeptical. I will let you all know what happens. Hopefully I can write in that I got them & they are great.

  3. #3
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    Feb 2006
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    UP michigan
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    Default

    The packages I received were one's we ordered last June. Only thing I can say to incurage you is at least your able to talk with them unlike other package producers out there. Let us know how it works out,

    Camp
    As wonderful as this life is, there are days I really look forward to the next. :)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    vernon,Wisconsin,usa
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    Default

    Well, I did recieve my bees on Friday as promised...Finally. They are in good shape. It was a nice heavy 3#, probably more like 4#. However, the queen was not marked like I had requested. At this point I am just glad I got my bees. I would say that if someone is considering this place to order from.. I did get my order, but not without many, many frustrating phone calls. The gentleman I spoke with, was always pleasant on the phone, just had lots of reasons why be bees were late & kept changing the date. Unfortunatly, there is no one elso out there that I have seen who is reputable & sells caucasian bees. I will probably only have them as "caucasian" until they supercede or whatever, because I will not chance trying to order a queen from this place. Just a side FYI- This apiary is also listed as selling Russians and is a member of the Russian Assoc. They also go by "Winter's Apiaries" or have in the past? Maybe it really was a case of bad weather, whatever, still leaves me wondering if they will build up enough for winter.
    Last edited by Charlotte; 05-23-2009 at 10:35 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
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    UP michigan
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    Default

    Let me know how your queen made it. Of the two packages I got one queen was alive after 4 days and the other one was dead. I do manual release. I put a frame of brood in the queenless one and they have two queen cells going now.

    Camp
    As wonderful as this life is, there are days I really look forward to the next. :)

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    vernon,Wisconsin,usa
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    Default

    Well, so far so good. I hang my queen cage between the frames & put some pollen patty in the hole instead of using the candy. I also sprayed them all down (including the queen in her cage) with sugar water that had a couple drops of lemon grass oil, thyme oil & wintergreen oil. (Basically the same stuff as what's in "honey-b-healthy") This seems to work really well for me with queen exceptence. Checked them today & she is already laying...which I was really surprised! They are doing well so far, the only thing I noticed is that they seem to have more varroa already than I like to see in a package. And lots of drones it seems. Hopefully they will do well. Wish I would have had my stuff handy to mark that queen when I saw her today. I was just doing a quick check to see if she was out & replace the frame, and sure enough there she was. Oh well, next time! I am interested to hear how your bees work out from this place too. Keep me posted if you think of it! By the way- I know you said you are letting them raise a queen- did you contact this place to see if they would send you a new queen?? (of course you may not get her for a year or two!)

  7. #7
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    Feb 2006
    Location
    UP michigan
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    Default

    Yep, already contacted them but haven't heard back yet, The queen did make it here alive, so don't really think he owes me one. If she wasn't laying, or was a drone layer that would be a different story. Really hard to say if it was the queen or just one of those uncontroable things. I'll leave it up to Long Creek, because if they've been having problems with queens I won't be the only one. I'll have to try that spray you use just for the heck of it. I'll let you know also as to how they do.

    Camp
    As wonderful as this life is, there are days I really look forward to the next. :)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cocke County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    70

    Default Tired

    I am really considering retiring from queen and package breeding. Once the package and queen business was a pleasure and most beekeepers understood that you can not open a hive in pouring rain and shake their packages. They also understood that a queen will not mate in the rain or cool weather. I am tired of getting beat up by a few vocal beekeepers. Communication today is too instant where a hot head can blast a reputable company and do damage without any recourse. Too many people believe everything they read as gospel. What you DON'T hear is that every queen and package breeder in the country has had problems with weather this year and some have canceled orders because of the weather. Maybe another local queen breeder that quit the queen business and went into the honey production was smarter than I thought he was at the time!

  9. #9
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    Feb 2006
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    UP michigan
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beemaster01 View Post
    I am really considering retiring from queen . . .
    Your right and I hope my comments didn't lead to make anyone think I was looking for a new queen from Long Creek. Like I said the package and queen arived alive, what happens after that is my problem if one arisis, unless its a drone layer. We farm for a living and I couldn't agree with you more. I'm constantly amazed that there are as many package producers as there are. Why in the world would anyone want to produce packages and queens, and put up with the unrealistic expectations that people that havent' a clue as to what it takes to produce queens and packages for as little $$ as they get for them. It's like any farm product anymore, they want the best for as cheap as they can get it. I do believe there is still a market for quality, but your going to have to change for it, and those that want it will have to be willing to pay for it. If it wasn't a labor of love it would be factory beekeeping, just like the way more farming has gone these days.

    Camp
    Last edited by Camp9; 05-29-2009 at 06:51 AM. Reason: added more comments
    As wonderful as this life is, there are days I really look forward to the next. :)

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    Placer county,CA
    Posts
    11

    Default

    I bought 2 caucaian queens from Long Creek in 07.I couldn't be happier. I've made several splits from them since.
    Last year I got 180 lbs of honey from one of them.
    They are gentler than my carnis and don't swarm near as much.
    About the same amount of propolis as any other bees i've had.
    I will be ordering more queens from them in the future.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    vernon,Wisconsin,usa
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    Default

    I asked about a replacement queen because I was under the asumption at first, that one of the queens arrived dead. If the queen arrives dead, it is my feeling that it should be replaced by the supplier. If it dies after you got it- then that is your own fault, not the supplier. I'm sure that selling queens, packages, etc is a lot of hard & exhausting work. So are most businesses. I was disappointed at the lack of communication with this company. I realize weather plays a part in everything. This place had last years orders to fill first, which I understand, but that right there says there was going to be a delay. If that's the case, fine, let me know up front. I had to make several phone calls & got a new answer everytime. So far my bees are doing great & I am very pleased with them. I am not interested in attacking anyone. Just saying what my experience was. And if for those companies out there that don't want to have decent communication with customers & feel that the business they are in is too hard for them- then "happy retirement" to you!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cocke County, Tennessee, USA
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    Default

    Actually no, the orders to be filled from last year were all scheduled to be shipped the first week of May. No 2009 orders were scheduled that week so there was no delay in scheduling. The delay came because of the bad weather. It is a shame that so few people understand that weather plays a much greater role in queen breeding and package production than any other phase of beekeeping, period. Just as a short example, if a queen does not mate by the age of 16 days, she will not mate and will be a drone layer. Two weeks of bad weather and you are 30 days behind on queens. There are far too many examples to list here. Since I can not predict the weather, you may get the same answer as to why your order has been delayed two or three weeks in a row. It is NOT just a run-around!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Jacksonville, NC, USA
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    52

    Default

    I recieved my 2 packages from Longcreek yesterday. They were later than I had hoped, but I did realize the weather was not being cooperative. The Bees arrived in great shape, one of the packages had already started drawing comb in the package, only 2 days in transit. Needless to say they were a bit of a handful for a beginner to install, but it was a learning experience LOL.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
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    DuPage County, Illinois USA
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    9,304

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by beemaster01 View Post
    There are far too many examples to list here.
    Which is exactly why suppliers of queens and bees ought to be very careful about making promises to consumers. "You'll get your bees by such and such a date" is setting themselves and a consumer up for some pretty ugly results should one of the many potential setbacks happen. Better to be cautious and meet the promise than to be overly confident and have an unhappy consumer.
    Regards, Barry

  15. #15
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    Feb 2006
    Location
    UP michigan
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    Default

    Now that's hitting the nail on the head. Most understand if you tell them upfront that the date you give is only aprox. This kind of consideration to those who are buying seems to be lacking by a lot of package producers. If you have a queen or package supplier that you like and have had good luck with there bees, you should be more than willing to work with them on delays. It dosent take much to be a package and queen producer, BUT to be a good one, its night and day.

    Camp
    Last edited by Bizzybee; 06-14-2009 at 06:26 PM. Reason: Unnecessary quoting
    As wonderful as this life is, there are days I really look forward to the next. :)

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    vernon,Wisconsin,usa
    Posts
    47

    Default

    Well said Barry & Camp. I am full aware of the date being approximate to a point. However, "the first week of May" and the last week of May are a whole nother story. Again communication here instead of promises that changed weekly here are the point. Being told "yep they are shipping Sat" and then Monday comes & still no bees. Another phone call, another reason, another promise on a ship date. Especially when the bees are going to be held at your post office 40 minutes away, and you better be home to pick them up, because by the time you get off work they are closed. Not exactly convenient to use a vacation day once a week in the month of May because you were expecting bees, last Monday, the Wed before that, the Thursday prior, etc.... Hope everyone has a great "bee season," regardless of when it actually starts...
    Last edited by Charlotte; 05-31-2009 at 04:07 PM. Reason: added more info

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,369

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    August 2008, "they'll ship next week"
    October 2008, "yes, we'll send you a refund"

    One or two occasions in early spring 2009 I left messages requested an estimated ship date, no response at all.

    First I get no queens, then I get no refund, now no communication. How on earth am I supposed to plan my beekeeping around customer service like this?

    Do I have a refund or some queens on the way? Can anyone tell me?

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    McLean County, Illinois
    Posts
    166

    Default

    I pickup my two packages of Russians from Long Creek Apiary yesterday. The bees are great! I would not hesitate to order from Long Creek again. Two thumbs up!!

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Kiel WI, USA
    Posts
    2,369

    Default Re: Long Creek

    *sigh*

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