Mike Bispham, thanks for posting and sharing your thoughts. There are alot of lurkers here who will appreciate and gleen from information you shared.
Some folks can apply organic type keeping, some can't or won't. Paradigm's are hard to change.
I can only speak for myself. Started bees in NY in early 80's, moved them to the midwest, moved them to the south, then moved them to the high plains about three years ago. No chemicals of any sort, ever. Same bees from same stock, breeding strong queens from strong colonys. Kept only what I could manage at any one time, most being 28. Least being 4. Mentored by an old beek who is 88 now and still manages 80 hives.
I enjoy Mr. Palmer's site and have gleened some of his idea's that have been sucessful for him. I enjoyed reading Mr. Conrad's study and results of his experience. Mr. Tecumseh has had some interesting points that he has shared as well. My point is, there is a buch of interesting techniques out there that folks are willing to share, and I for one appreciate it. If someone puts out, what I think will not work for my application, I just don't use it. I don't slam him for being different than myself.
Sorry, some of the earlier post got my grey beard shaking. For the first time, next spring my job will allow me to expand at a faster rate than my splits will allow. I will be purchasing some nucs from a TX beek for faster expansion. I will let you know how it goes with the new stock, and share the results. Im sure the strong will survive and the weak will pass.
Thanks for listening.