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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Alameda Count, CA
    Posts
    3

    Default New From SF Bay Area

    I am wondering if it is too late in the year now to start a new hive in our good climate.
    Am reading a few differing opinions.
    thanks
    These are backyard bees in a top frame I have not yet purchased.
    Joe2

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Los Altos, CA
    Posts
    121

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    No, I just did a cutout today of a swarm that moved in two wks ago and they have capped honey already. Seems like an exellent yr for us in terms of nectar flow.
    One have produced 80 pounds already with another super almost fully capped.

    Let me know if you'd like some bees.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,793

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    >backyard bees in a top frame???

    Top Bar hive?
    Frame hive?
    Package?
    Full hive?
    Part of a frame hive?
    Part of a Topbar hive?
    You should probably feed them this late.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Alameda Count, CA
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    Thank you for the replies. I could use some good local info. I am leaning towards purchasing the Top Bar Hive with legs. It has a window that can be opened on the side of observation. I would love to look inside myself, and children who visit also. BUT, in reading it seems like it could be too small, too fast as there is no way to place a super on top?
    Is there a big division between Top Bar and Frame Hive opinions/camps?
    I would love some bees if I can get this decision made. I really want to help support the bee population. I garden and am just now seeing more honey bees after several years of sketchy attendance.
    Does the hive really need to be a far distance from the house? I have a few good spots in my mind but they may be 20-40 feet from home with low traffic.
    Glad to have found you! JOE2

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,077

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    Hi Joe,
    Last year I started a swarm in a nuc, in September. They overwintered just fine.
    For a top bar hive you'd need a package of bees, which you can't get this time of year. Or a swarm, but prime swarm season is over. Because if you bought a nuc hive the frames wouldn't fit in you're top bar hive. There will still be swarms just not as many as earlier. Check in with the alameda county beekeepers assoc. Let them know you're looking for a swarm.
    Dan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    6,765

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    Welcome Joe! Top bar and Langstroth beekeepers are like snow skiiers and snow boarders. There are a few of us that enjoy both, but most think they are the only ones in their right minds. I find the Langstroth much easier to manage and less expensive as I cut my own of both. Bees are kept in both worldwide. The top bar has a longer history with archeological finds back thousands of years. I have seen the same design in use in the same Middle East countries they were originally discovered in.
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Location
    San Mateo, CA
    Posts
    4,793

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    Quote Originally Posted by KQ6AR View Post
    Hi Joe,
    Last year I started a swarm in a nuc, in September. They overwintered just fine.
    Fed? Not fed? feeded? needed? How big of a swarm?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Concord, CA
    Posts
    4,077

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    Hi OD,
    Just gave them a frame of honey from another hive. Also a few drawn frames . It was the beginning of Sep.
    Not a big swarm maybe cantaloupe size. It was in my backyard so probably from one of my hives. If so the parent hive was able to raise a successful queen at that time of year. Because all 7 of our hives made it through winter OK.
    Dan

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Location
    Alameda Count, CA
    Posts
    3

    Default Re: New From SF Bay Area

    Thank you all for the fast advice.
    America's Beekeeper, I hope a newbie question is ok. I was considering the Top Bar because it appears to be easier and cheaper but your experience says otherwise. I am most interested in that response, as it just looks like a lot less equipment is needed for TopBar. Stop me if I am wrong?
    JOE2

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