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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,176

    Default are your bees ready for winter?

    Sure have heard alot of strange weather reports over this last year, from Texas 100 year drought to North Dakota floods.How are your bees shaping up & are you doing anything special to them after this odd year?
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,376

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    So far so good, but February is a long ways off. The mite levels are about the lowest and hive populations the highest that I have seen this time of year in quite some time. The last mite treatment we gave them was a year ago, go figure.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Faulkner Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    1,697

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Getting there. Mites are low, bees look good. Like Jim says, long way off..for us...April. Using mite wipes for the first time to do a v mite clean up. And since i have had trachea issues before, doing a clean up on that too.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Menomonee Falls, Wis.
    Posts
    2,698

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Not looking bad so far. No frost, bees still bring in pollen, and queens still laying as of a week ago, but it has rained since then, grrrrrr...

    Crazy Roland

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Staunton VA
    Posts
    150

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    i told them too, and they said ok were ready

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2003
    Location
    Lakeland FL
    Posts
    846

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Bees have been looking great this summer my mite counts are a bit high i treated last week; and the honey flow that just started here should give me a clean round of bees to hit the winter with.
    Mite counts in my bees are the highest iv seen in a few years. Dont know the reason for this maybe my bees have been brooding so much this year, my populations have been huge all year.
    Nick

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Polk County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    252

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    One weird year for sure. My area was hit with 5 different tornadoes in one day and we just recovered from 12 inches of rain in one day after suffering the whole month of August without any. My bees seem to be doing real well on the Goldenrod/Aster flow. I have a few supers full of it already waiting to be capped. The SHB populations were also incredibly low the whole year too but Im not complaining.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Selby, SD, USA
    Posts
    217

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    still pulling honey. hope to start shipping bees to TX by the 1st or 2nd week in Nov.
    Greg Stahlman; Stahlman Apiaries Inc.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Brandon, MS USA
    Posts
    1,585

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    As predicted, the early warmth this spring brought on tremendous storms in the south and caused a lot of damage... and in turn, we had a late start after regrouping, but an especially long season... goldenrod is just opening, aster has been blooming for about a week and a half, and I foresee this flow lasting until late October... the late summer rains have even brought back enough clover to create another flow in some of our yards where the summer heat had scorched the ground bare... we are already above average on honey production and have been splitting and setting up nucs all month... plenty of food to go around, should be an excellent buildup next spring...

    I am spreading things out even farther now, so hopefully we won't have to fight the storms so badly next spring... in the process, I have a lot of empty yards in orchards (apples, peaches, pecans, etc)... if anyone needs some southern locations to winter in, let me know...

    Shb have not been a problem this year, but we ran traps and deterrents all season... haven't lost any hives or splits and they are in their down time now...

    Mites have been extremely low all season, haven't had to treat anything so far, even with heavy brood rearing... may be that they are not fond of the shb deterrent either...

    Nucs to overwinter are doing great and I am trying out a few different styles of boxes to test their wintering abilities... fingers crossed...

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    dadeville, alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,163

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Had a little more problem with the hive beetle. Crop was just a normal crop-no complaints. Hives are strong with some still bearded out. All meds have been applied earlier in August. Bees are working the following-Goldenrod, asters, Spanish needles, New York Ironweed, Smokebush, and our wild type bradford pear that is in the area by the gazzillions of trees has been tricked by the drought so it is blooming again. So the bees will do well and I have left a super on for some surplus to finish out one last load to Sioux. Bees should come out of the winter in good shape for nuc production. TED
    ALABAMA BEE COMPANY-A member of the Sioux Honey association -*Sweetening a golden tommorrow*

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,384

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Well, I'll be glad when 2011 is history! This has been a difficult year all around. Started with deep snows in winter. Then we got flooded with rain and snow melt. Lake Champlain reached its all time height above seal lever...103.8'. Flood stage is 100'. The spring was wettest on record...5+ inches over average for both April and May. Couldn't drive into some yards until June. Had to carry in supers, etc. It finally stopped raining in mid-June and never rained again until August. With the high temps, everything dried out fast. Ground got so dry that it developed wide cracks in the soil.

    Honeyflow started well, and Honeysuckle and Sumac looked great. Promise of Clover with the moisture in the ground...and good bloom. Nothing happened. We took off supers in late August and got a half a crop. Goldenrod flolw started right on time on August 15. Smelled strong and I was looking forward to heavy hives well stocked for winter. Not! Irene came on the 28th and ended the flow for good. Now I have many yards that need serious feeding. Winter is almost here in Vermont and feeding temps are quickly going by.

    I sure would like to see an average, regular old year, with average temps, rainfall, honeyflow...I'm sick to death of our weather being the wettest-driest, coldest-hottest, deepest-least, etc, etc.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    strum, wi.; eustis,, fl.
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Weather not too awfully abnormal here in Wisconsin. Hard to say what a normal crop is here as the last five years or so just haven't been up to par. Too many non-producers knocking the average down. Thankful for the strong price for honey. I think it was only 10 years ago that the price was 65 cents. My little 70 lb average this year wouldn't have been worth much.
    The three things that have changed in my operation the past couple of years are:
    1) this fall have hit them with oxalic twice
    2) I double up all the dead outs as I come across them during the summer instead of taking just singles south. With just the least bit of effort seem to be able to get bomber doubles by first week in February on a consistent basis. Split them at that time to make up deadouts and still make some citrus from both units.
    3) made some third week in August splits that have turned out fine.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,376

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Bill: Pretty sure most folks on here would be happy to have your "little" 70 lb. average. If the National Honey report is any indication, nationwide the average usually ends up around 60 lbs. Wisconsin had 60 in 2009 and 68 in 2010 so with those numbers in mind you did pretty well. Wish I was as far along in treatments as you. I hear ya Greg, we have another couple of weeks of extracting ahead of us yet, 3 months of this starts to wear you down.
    One little observation about weather and averages. I think too often people confuse average with normal. Averages are simply that.....averages, Taking all the extremes and doing the simple math shouldnt lead one to expect that in weather or honey crops that there is some base line that one can reasonably expect. Too often its feast or famine, I can remember old timers talking about this crazy weather when I was a kid. My conclusion is that the chances of getting a "normal" year are really abnormally small.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Panola County, TX USA
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    70 lb. average is what we got here as well. Bees are looking great.

    Hey Jim how is that possible that you dont treat for mites?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Panola County, TX USA
    Posts
    117

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    o yeah and today is sept 30th, finished pulling honey yesterday and today is the last day of extracting.

    we have never been done this early but it feels **** good







    Homestead Apiaries Inc.
    Southeastern MN
    o yeah and East Texas

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    South Dakota
    Posts
    73

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Got about 2 weeks here too of pulling honey .The forcast looks perfect for yard work next week in the 80s so hope to gets lots done.I have shipped out a couple loads of leased bees. My bees are strong and heavy for a change and low mite count ,knock on wood

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Oregon City, Oregon
    Posts
    988

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Keith Jarrett View Post
    are you doing anything special to them after this odd year?
    Are you trying to sell something..???
    Honeydew

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Amador County, Calif
    Posts
    3,176

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by HONEYDEW View Post
    Are you trying to sell something..???
    Now HoneyDew... lol would I do something like that?? lol
    No, but on that note I had bees this spring in TX in a drought than shipped them to ND to a flood. I'm with MP I would settle for a normal year.

    P.S the sub is selling very well thanks. just ask JBJ or Beebz in your neck of the woods.
    NUTRA-BEE feed supplements

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Grand Rapids, Ohio
    Posts
    862

    Wink Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Still trying to get the last of the honey off before they eat it all. Made enough to try again next year.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,376

    Default Re: are your bees ready for winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by benstung View Post

    Hey Jim how is that possible that you dont treat for mites?
    #1 We kind of hit the reset button by killing all of our old queens in March when we are nucing
    #2 We do treat for mites in the fall and usually in the spring except this year because we just werent seeing many. We are just getting done now with thymol treatments, we will probably follow up with oxalic, have to see how the numbers look in a few weeks
    #3 We treat as needed, this year maybe we just got lucky, I'm not about to claim that I have cracked the code on Varroa management or that it was anything out of the ordinary that we did.

    So I am assuming its just the year but hopefully its a trend only time will tell.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

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