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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Hampton, VA, USA
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I use the Miller method so I have not done any grafting. I find its much less work and I get good results.

  2. #22

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    We are communicating!
    I love that.

    Fuzz et al: I have a powerpoint slide presentation with 40 or so slides from my last night class presentation and only one with words on it (other than the title page).
    I'd be happy to share it, I am sure that many or most would be able to infer something valuable from photos. We could easily make a game of it! 100 different versions of Erin's slide presentation. I say lets go for it.

    If someone knows an easy way for me to share a 29MB PDF of a powerpoint presentation, please pm or email me directly and I'll get it right out there.

    This is fun.

    I have to say that the only thing that gets me more energized than being in a room full of beekeepers is being in an apiary with lots of flying happy hives.

    Let's kick it up, keep the learning going, and play on the bees team.

    Best to all,
    -E.
    Erin Forbes, EAS Master Beekeeper
    overlandhoney.com

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Silicon Valley, CA
    Posts
    1,235

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I can't help it, I just have to take the shot.

    "I have to say that the only thing that gets me more energized than being in a room full of beekeepers is being in an apiary with lots of flying happy hives."

    If you are in an apiary with flying hives then one of two things is possible.
    a. you are standing in tornado alley on a bad day
    b. you've been hitting the hooch a bit too much

    Fuzzy

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Finger Lakes, NY
    Posts
    138

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    My goal over the next few seasons is to take steps toward having a self-sufficient 10-15 colonies here. I'm overwintering one small colony in a single deep as practice for next winter when I hope to make up half a dozen 4-5 frame nucs with northern raised Russian queens to bring through winter. Then in 2011 I want to start raising some queens myself. Maybe in a few years I'll have enough nucs I can start selling them.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Lee\'s Summit, MO
    Posts
    1,300

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I didn't know this is what it's called but it appears I may be doing it. I've got 9 hives and I grafted queens for requeening certain hives and all of my 6 nucs. I fugured any hives that didn't make I'd replace with nucs that are headed by Fall queens. I'd love to see the presentation to learn more.
    Ninja, is not in the dictionary. Well played Ninja's, well played...

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Hampton, VA, USA
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I'm not sure if there is a set of guidelines to measure if I am selfsustaining or not but I think of it as the number of colonies I have in one year to the number I have in the next. Then where did the difference come from or go to. And lastly did I have excess colonies that I provided to other beekeepers. In my case I count colonies and queens each as a 1, so if I sell a nuc it counts as 1, if I sell just a queen I still count her as 1.

    so last year I had 5 colonies and started with 2 nucs in the spring. I went into winter with 6 colonies and 3 nucs. I purchased no bees (packages or nucs) or queens so as of fall 09 I was at +2. But also during the summer I provided nucs which put me well above that. Off hand I don't know how many, I would have to look in my records and count, but its above 10.

    this year I am purchasing 4 queens to put in my out yards but I will still be in a positive number by fall as the new queens will only subtract -4 from my total.

    I guess this number could be a running count from spring to summer to fall to winter and back to spring. The further away from zero one side of the other would be the gauge of how you are doing, self sustaining or not.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Loganville/Greensboro, Georgia, USA
    Posts
    241

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I've been thinking about my question of how many hives would be needed to be self sustaining, and I see the point that it's not about numbers but about management style. I guess many people who only keep one or two hives are probally not interested in making nucs to over winter or otherwise making increase, and are happy to buy replacements as needed. Good thing too, as nuc producers need a market. I am looking foward to the March Bee Culture issue for the nuc article...I just got the January issue today (I haven't subscribed yet and still pick up a copy when I go to TSC for chicken feed). I think where I am is not sustainability but GROWTH! lol

  8. #28

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Working on the upload with no success.
    My website server only allows 2M attachments or smaller.

    In any event, the powerpoint is the background and the visual, the talking is the real teaching.

    I will certainly be doing this Intermediate Bee School again. Further, your own Master Beekeepers or other Bee School instructors can do the same or similar programs - but you are going to have to ask the beekeeper to do the class and then they'll need to coordinate with cooperative extension or whoever they can get to help get the room, take the fees, order the books, etc. Seriously, I simply called up the cooperative extension agent her in Cumberland County, introduced myself and said I'd like to start an Intermediate bee school. We met one time re: curriculum (which I prepared as he doesn't know much about bees) and then I made the syllabus and the extension office commenced to registering students. Publicity via the state association website and the Extension newsletter. Voila, Intermediate Bee School!

    To any who might consider teaching: I taught the second class this past wednesday (after a long accountant's day of work during Year End). I'll admit, I started off feeling tired and less well prepared than I wanted to be. The class was 56 students. Spring Management of Overwintered Colonies, Swarming, Making Nucs and Splits, and Understanding the Queen were the topics. Class = 2 hours.
    I left the class so totally jazzed up, I can't even describe it. I think I saw at least 35 lightbulbs turn on over student's heads. Maybe even all 56.
    Teaching beginner bee school is fun. Teaching intermediate bee school is a total blast.

    I am sure that these students are to me as I am to Mike -
    Positive energy feeds positive energy.

    This is a good thing and we should all work to keep the learning and the growing.

    This is why we have beesource and bee clubs.

    Best to all,
    -E.
    Erin Forbes, EAS Master Beekeeper
    overlandhoney.com

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Lawrence, Kansas, USA
    Posts
    44

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Quote Originally Posted by Maine_Beekeeper View Post

    If someone knows an easy way for me to share a 29MB PDF of a powerpoint presentation, please pm or email me directly and I'll get it right out there.

    -E.
    Try something like: http://www.4shared.com/
    Then share the URL here in the forum.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,373

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    As Erin said, there are problems in sending a powerpoint presentation.

    The files are too large. My presentation "Successful Overwintering of Nucleus Colonies in Vermont" is 183 MB. The PP that accompanies my March "Bee Culture" article is 34 MB.

    Powerpoint is only a crutch used by the presenter. It is more like an outline that a book. There are lots of bullets and photographs to support the presentation, but it's not the presentation itself.

    My presentation comes along with me. I'd be glad to share with you if your association can get me there. It's taken me many years of trial and error to get where I am. It's taken me years of work to get my presentation to where it is. I couldn't send it out without me as backup. You do understand?
    Mike

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    755

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Quote Originally Posted by Maine_Beekeeper View Post
    If someone knows an easy way for me to share a 29MB PDF of a powerpoint presentation, please pm or email me directly and I'll get it right out there.
    Erin- I just shared a 75 MEG power point since I was too sick to teach class on Thursday night and had to get it to someone. What I did was go into one photo in the slide show. I right clicked to get format photo and clicked on compress all photos in show. It turned it into 7 megs... not that that is OK for bee source, but you could email something like that out to folks with high speed. Only other alternative is an ftp (file transfer protocol) site which I am sure David could help you with.
    I would love to see the power point myself....
    karla

  12. #32
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    755

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Quote Originally Posted by Hampton View Post
    I know of beekeepers who have been at it for many many years and still make sure to get their orders for packages in every November. There are a few clubs in my area that are trying. Its a thought.
    Hey "Hampton" we have talked before - I am your up north neighbor. Colonial Beekeepers are moving in this direction as well.
    This year is the first I will not buy any packages and that our club will not buy any packages as a club. Our 25 beginning students will all get 1 nuc that our club members make (with the majority of thsoe being overwintered nucs) and 1 package. This represents 50% less packages than two years ago when all we could offer students were packages. We are really only a very small group doing this- less than 10 of us, but look at the progress we are making? Now we have 2 years of students who are getting exposed to a nuc right at the start.
    Erin and Mike have been good teachers to us, even from such a distance, but talking and sharing our experiences and using this forum have also served an important function.
    karla

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Lincolnton, NC
    Posts
    1,107

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    For those of you from NC, Dave Tarpy of NC Sate Univ. will be having queen rearing & bee breeding workshops across the state this spring. Check it out. It should be great. I plan to do it.


    http://entomology.ncsu.edu/apiculture/BornAndBred.html


    Lawrence

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Hampton, VA, USA
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Hi karla, Colonial Beekeepers went no packages last year. This year we should have double the members making nucs and a few extra making queens. Its a start.

    There will be a Queen Rearing class in Hampton on the
    18th of February. Information on the upcoming classes can be found on the club web site.

    www.colonialbeekeepers.com.

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    755

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Quote Originally Posted by Hampton View Post
    Hi karla, Colonial Beekeepers went no packages last year. This year we should have double the members making nucs and a few extra making queens. Its a start.

    www.colonialbeekeepers.com.
    We are getting there. We will be down to less than 50% packages this year. Northern Shenandoah has had no packages for like 3 years.. and they have 40 students a year! It is great to be in touch.
    karla

  16. #36
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Townsend, TN
    Posts
    206

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I find it interesting that in all of this talk of sutainability no one has said anything about feeding or treating. Raising your own queens is of course part of being sustainable, but your not truly sustainable untill you do it without feeding sugar or treating with chemicals or powderd sugar or anything. I wonder if anyone is doing this? please contact me if you are because that is my end goal, I want a farm in the middle of nowhere so I can provide for myself and my family and only have to drive to the farmers market to sell honey, veggies so I can pay a mortgage and buy gas to drive to the farmers market. I mean thats how things used to be why cant I do it now?

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    755

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Quote Originally Posted by hipbee View Post
    , but your not truly sustainable untill you do it without feeding sugar or treating with chemicals or powderd sugar or anything. I wonder if anyone is doing this?
    I think Guenther Hawk is running a no feed model- but I am not sure where he is at now since retiring from the Pfeiffer Center... somewhere in the midwest. Maybe the biobees contingent knows
    karla

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Hampton, VA, USA
    Posts
    175

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    I don't think feeding bees runs agaist being self sustaining.

    Using powdered sugar for mite control is a good part of IPM.

    Using chemicals is up to the individual.

    The difference would be natural beekeeping and being self sustaining.

  19. #39
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,692

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Hipbee - When you get CCD, you will know the answer to your question. These are not the "good ol' days".


    Roland

  20. #40
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Citrus, FL
    Posts
    14

    Default Re: Self-sustaining beekeeping

    Quote Originally Posted by Hampton View Post
    I don't think feeding bees runs agaist being self sustaining.

    Using powdered sugar for mite control is a good part of IPM.

    Using chemicals is up to the individual.

    The difference would be natural beekeeping and being self sustaining.
    I'd say if you are growing your own sugar, that's self-sustaining.

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