4 Years. 9 hives. Tx Free. USDA Zone 5b.
My son is a foreman for him. So I have a little idea of how they work but I don't work there or represent them so please take it for what its worth. The California cages that I get from them are 104 to a box. I use three boxes early in march this year for splits. I sent a check for $5100 on September 5th last year after I finished pulling and knew what kind of money I would be getting out of that crop. That was for 300 queens $17 each is the 150+ rate. My check cleared sometime in the middle of February and my first box was delivered on March 5th. The other two boxes were delivered on the next two Wednesdays as I requested. I think that the small orders are filled after the large ones are. I know what you mean about it seeming like they could just knock out all these little ones and save the bickering but then they may have put a longtime commercial customer in a bind that he can't get out of. You got one hive that is queenless for an extra week or 2 or you got a commercial that is missing a week or two from his crop or setting his nucs back that far and putting the complaints on his back. Doc said that he has lost money on small orders because he replaces the queens that the people don't introduce right and he pays the shipping. The profit on one queen must be dismal so sending one replacement at today's shipping rates must eat up the profits for about 10 other orders. If he loses one commercial customer, that loss would eat up the profits from 100 or more little customers. I have seen them packing commercial orders in California and they are all relaxed and having a good time packing 20 or 30 boxes twice a week. Those 20 or 30 boxes would be 2000 or 3000 little orders and every one still needs a package a label and contacting the customer. If 500 of those are fumbled by the post office or the new beekeeper that gets them messes up the install, that's 500 replacements that go into the next weeks work and $10000 on shipping and he gets zip for those. He could say no replacements but with the bickering here, that would be 500 people with torches and pitchforks joining the crowd. I think he did right by cutting it off. My son let me in on their plans and I think everyone will be happy with them. Doc is going to get back to his research and focus on working with breeders and commercials. They will have a whole company in each state that will be smaller but only covering a smaller demographic. The cells that the smaller companies use for their queens will all be from the 3 cell builder places that serve the whole company. I like the idea.
Hughes, are you saying Robert is producing 20 to 30 boxes of a 100 queens twice a week?
Where are these being produced?
"Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself." - Mark Twain
I would like to apologize and ask my forum posts be removed. I was caught up in the Beesourse forums mis information and heated thread and made some statements that I know now, after a few personal messages from Beesourse members, were harsh and not correct.
Many of the folks upset about their late orders had extenuating circumstances on their end that was not disclosed. Not all, but many.
Please accept my apology to all members. Any questions please PM me.
Last edited by Barry; 05-28-2012 at 09:48 AM. Reason: off topic
Yes at one operation in California. They have more than that though. I think they manage 10000 nucs. They co op with other companies so they can be where the spring is to extend their seasons. Following the flow I guess. They don't raise queens in Mississippi. That was his dad. It would suit me to be able to drive over to pick up cells when I need them. But Doc says he won't be selling queens from here.
Mr. Hughes, I understand what you are saying and I did not think that Russells would continue this terribly troubling onsies and twosies market. I cringed every time I read on his forum the whines and the rations of crap being handed out. I fully agree with his decision as I am totally unwilling to ever again undergo the drama of when I will recieve the queens for my business. I in good faith ordered and paid up front a full large price each for ten queens. I wanted them to make splits in early May. In an effort to keep my bees out of the trees I have scrambled and bought queens twice now. I no longer really need these queens paid for last October, but how would I tell someone? No one answers an email or a phone. I understand again the pressure the cascade of calls by frantic orderers of onsies and twosies put on their system. I have intentionall not added to the din. I am just an old dilletante who can afford to let capital rot for a year and go to the expense of overwintering and testing queens---that I won't be able to get again if I like and want them! I am not a serious businessman like you, buying a hundred at a time--who obviously needs better treatment. And has connections.
Now, those folks who ordered woodware last year before Christmas and were still begging for it the end of April, what flood of small people orders caused that?
I am not in any way shape or form wishing Dr. Russell ill in his life or business. I thank him for the knowledge he freely passes out. He almost replaces the wisdom of _______! I just believe that when you make a promise that you keep it or make it right if you can't. I just don't need a lot more of this kind of drama. So I will calmly wait til I get my 15 queens I have on order and be thankful if they don't arrive with the first snow in September. Then I won't be back.
Vance E. Gilbraith
Great Falls Montana
"MoonBeams - Begin Shipping mid-late May (2012)... Weather permitting... (Note: Limited supply)"
You purchased several nucs from Russell last year and drove down to pick them up, you didn't even inspect them before accepting them, got home and found some not to be in good shape. Well it was your obligation to make sure they were what you ordered, but instead you threw a tantrum and blasted Russell to anyone and everyone........
....then you sent him MORE money for MORE bees??????
Doesn't add up......
Jim, why quote me then ignore what I said?
I didn't say rely, I said help.
I didn't say other beeks grew to commercial level relying on Russel queens.
I said I hoped to use Russell genetics to get to commercial level.
I certainly don't plan on using $3 dollar queens from anyone when the going rate is 4 to 6 times that for a quality queen. I've dealt with too many slum landlords over the years.
I might have my sights set on a new Mercedes but you want me to drive a Yugo. No thanks.
I'll keep on driving my old Ford and even older used Mercedes.
Oh and Mike(another NDer) if you read what I said again, I still plan on getting to commercial level with or without Russel genetics.
I can still get to where I want to go by walking.
The only jeapardy I see is getting run over by that guy in the Yugo when his steering breaks. Or he sets a couple truckloads of mite infested hives by my yards.
I think I'm all done here. This is getting to be too much of a downer with no end in sight.
May it only rain after midnight and quit before daylight for you.
Push, Pull, or get Out of the Way
WPG: I stand corrected "helped" not "relied" fair enough. Now please clarify that I was clearly referring to $3 queen cells and not $3 mated queens. We have not only significantly grown our business with them we have supplied many of the best commercial operations with the same stock as well. I didn't realize all of our hard work has resulted in a bunch of Yugo's. If the premise of your argument is that one must spend lots of money to end up with good bees then I most respectfully disagree. Not only are there lots and lots of good breeders out there but I would maintain that good breeding conditions and good beekeeping practices trump any claimed genetic advantages every time anyway.
"Ve are too soon olt und too late schmart."- A nameless German philosopher
1) You HAVE to have good genetics to be successful, bad genetics = bad bees, regardless of anything else (and I'm just being general with that argument, not in ANY way implying that there is only one supplier/strain of good genetics...I'm sure there are hundreds, if not thousands)
2) Good breeding/beekeeping practices DO always trump inferior practices, regardless of genetics...if you ruin your bees, they're ruined...no matter what DNA they had.
3) Yes, anything concrete beats any "claimed" whatever....BUT a "real" genetic advantage, coupled with good practices, will also trump any good practices with less beneficial genetics. Otherwise, we'd have no AHB on this continent, because our breeders would already have magically beaten all the genetic advantages of the AHB with their good breeding practices, so our bees would be equal or superior in every way & there'd have been no reason for the research in Brazil, plus our bees would have out-competed the feral AHBs and kept them from "naturalizing."
In summary, it takes good available genetics, good breeding, AND good beekeeping...something we all already knew I think, so let's all be sure to apply the "common sense check," in addition to the built in "spell check" to our posts before hitting "Post Quick Reply" in a flustered frenzy.
Disagree sorta, good genetics make for good bees. Not saying a moron can buy bees and they'll make, but since I got into bigger nested crossings with hygenics, I havent seen a mite death in two years. Point in hand, Good genetics is at least 50% of the solution.
Robherc: you don't need to use the "duck" icon with me. I thought your post was pretty much on the mark
***************** Notice ***************
To all posting on the subject of Russell, refrain from starting new threads. There are already plenty of threads going on this topic, we don't need anymore! Also, DO NOT cross-post the same message to all the different threads like I just did!!
***************** End Notice ***************
DNA is DNA. An Insect, Mammal or Plant has the same DNA.
How the DNA is arranged and what is expressed down the developmental chain from what the DNA codes for, is what makes the variation.
Back to your regularly scheduled program...
Ummmm... yes, it's all Deoxyribonucleic Acid, all queen/worker bees have 32 chromosomes, and males have 16....BUT your post is still way off its mark. Simply put, if the codes don't match, it's different DNA...otherwise you'd be saying that all 32-page books are the same book, regardless of the words written in them!
Last edited by Barry; 05-29-2012 at 05:44 PM. Reason: remove name calling
lol either there was a misread there, or someone clearly missed sarcasm, followed by fact. winning.
Looks like they have took down their websight!