Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 54
  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    As I enter my first late-fall as a hobbyist keeper of bees I decided to look back at what I've observed as I try to learn as much as I can. And what I've seen can be quite ugly. I have seen conventional beekeepers bashing the treatment free communities; accusing them of being animal abusers and unscientific clueless hippies. I have seen the TF beekeepers accusing conventional beekeepers of poisoning bees and honey with mite treatments and encouraging the survival of a weakened gene pool.

    I say, enough! I don't think it's a stretch to say that most beekeepers care about the well being of their stock. Whether they are TF or not. It's good to have different views, but some of the name calling and finger pointing that comes out of some of these posts is just unnecessary.

    I spent a year doing research before investing in my first hives. I've learned from books, hands on with local beekeepers, and gone through online resources and forums like these. I've met with beekeepers who used treatment and those who don't. I, personally, have made an educated decision to practice TF methods but I still highly respect the methods my peers who do treat. My peers who treat are also respectful of my decision not to and still offer their support where it does not conflict with my own methods. I would like to see more of that in the online community.

    As we enter 2017, I can only hope we can stop blaming each other and instead appreciate the different approaches and understand that we all care about and want the best for our bees.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Germany, BW
    Posts
    946

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    I learned civilized behavior from squarepeg and Michael Bush.

    And when its too much I shut down the PC.
    Listen to good advice, then.... make your own decision. fusion_power
    www.vivabiene.de

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Yes, civility is a must in many aspects of life. It's unfortunate that this was my first impression of the beekeeping world. I am in my 30's and a product of the internet world but I yearn for a time when I could learn beekeeping (or other things for that matter) without a barrage of conflicting information. Yes, it's great that we have so much research (and anecdotes) right at our fingertips. But I think this is nearing a tipping point where, like you said SiWolKe, we "shut down the PC".

    Again, it's unfortunate because I like the idea of the beesource community as a place of supporting beekeeping methods. Not degrading them.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Germany, BW
    Posts
    946

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Well, grantsbees, you must know that 2 years ago I was such a tf enthusiast I was not able to accept other opinions.
    My mistake was to use all forums here.

    Now Im moderator of my own forum, where tf and treating beekeepers work together with the aim to go tf.
    Some of them will never stop treating their production hives but will try to go tf at a separate bee yard, which to me is a great success.

    The world`s trend is to "Trump" our discussions ( sorry you american people, we will be uncivilized next year, too, with the AFD).

    If you want to be treated in a more civilized way, look for the right community and be an example yourself.
    Listen to good advice, then.... make your own decision. fusion_power
    www.vivabiene.de

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Germany, BW
    Posts
    946

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Still, im a hothead, very determined, and have my attitude and opinions.
    Nothing to be ashamed about!
    Some tf beekeepers are not very happy with me!

    Look at the bright side, GB
    Listen to good advice, then.... make your own decision. fusion_power
    www.vivabiene.de

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    There is a fine line between preaching and bashing. I'm all for a little preaching as long as the message focuses on the positive.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    Hamilton, Alabama
    Posts
    2,598

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    All messages are not positive and all are not negative. There has to be some balance to what is said. I have not treated for mites in any way since the end of 2004. This is my 12th full year of no treatments.

    I had more problems this year with hive beetles than ever before. I found out that there are resistance mechanisms for hive beetles and have a couple of queens with very good resistance to breed from.

    I saw more wax moths this year than I have ever seen before. A beekeeper in the area must have let his bees collapse. There were hundreds of thousands of them in this area. My bees were successful at fending them off.

    This area experienced a fall drought worse
    than I've ever seen before including 1988 which was the previous worst. My bees responded by cutting cluster size to the smallest I've seen for winter. Most of them have a very tight cluster that is about softball size or a tad larger. This is worrisome, but I am confident the bees know what they are doing and will come out next spring in good shape.

    There is a reason the TF forum is heavily moderated and has specific rules to protect those who post.

    One beekeeper made a point of posting that he didn't want my treatment free bees within 7 miles of his treated colonies. I replied that he was roughly 700 miles from where I live and that was about far enough to keep his mite bombs away from my treatment free bees with their low to very low mite load. There is a lot of truth to this statement. Treated bees develop high mite loads in the fall and can cause mite loads on treatment free bees to increase rapidly through horizontal transfer. I am fortunate to live in an area where most beekeepers are treatment free.
    NW Alabama, 47 years, 22 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Quote Originally Posted by Fusion_power View Post
    One beekeeper made a point of posting that he didn't want my treatment free bees within 7 miles of his treated colonies. I replied that he was roughly 700 miles from where I live and that was about far enough to keep his mite bombs away from my treatment free bees with their low to very low mite load.
    I would say that is on the milder side of what I have seen. Something like that I could almost laugh off. It's when people start saying that what you are doing is bad husbandry, animal abuse, based on no significant evidence and that makes you a terrible beekeeper. Or better yet, don't even consider yourself a beekeeper.

    Stuff like that is just counter productive.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    5,154

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    For me, I don't see why people take such a dogmatic approach either way. The main thing I've learned is that you need to see what your area and bees can tolerate and then start making adjustments from there. I guess for me, TF is something you work towards, something you achieve along the way of learning about bees, their diseases, and how to manage them properly. You don't just get some bees, decide you're a TF beekeeper then proceed to ignore or deny the existence of varroa then blame the demise of your hive on wax moth, GMO's, CCD, neonics, but in no way was it related to varroa because you never noticed any mite issues in spring and summer.....

    That being said, I think I'll set up a sticky if Barry lets me on my little project of finding some resistance and stabilizing it in a breeding population of bees to produce somewhat stable F1's that are truly mite resistant on a genetic level in an area with very high pressure and density of commercially managed bees.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Who gives a rip. Be what you want to be. I dont have a problem with TF RESPONSIBLE beekeepers.
    I was however asked to come look at some bees in trouble with a new beekeeper that were started from packages. I did an alcohol wash. Full of mites. I told him I could swing by and hit them with OAV for a quick knockdown and for him to order some Apivar. You would have thought I told him to set fire to the hive. "He was a TF beekeeper". Organic was another word he threw around.
    I tried to help him understand that his methods were not working. That where he bought the packages from were probably bees that had been treated. That he should get with someone that was being treatment free for several years and start with those bees. Even then where he is located he is surrounded by other beekeepers doing who knows what.
    This man was willing to let the hive die rather than put in a chemical. And should we call him a beekeeper? I call him a bee killer.
    I offered to reimburse him for those bees and take them off his hands if he would go find a real TF mentor. Not a chance he was going to let me treat those bees by purchasing them. "if I sold them to you, you would just treat them".
    I am glad for the TF beekeepers out there that are practical. I dont like buying chemical. I would love to not have the expense in chemical and labor. However, I have too much invested to take a chance at this time.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Hillbillybees, What exactly was he expecting you to do?

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Yuba County, California, USA
    Posts
    5,816

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Quote Originally Posted by grantsbees View Post
    As I enter my first late-fall as a hobbyist keeper of bees I decided to look back at what I've observed as I try to learn as much as I can. And what I've seen can be quite ugly. I have seen conventional beekeepers bashing the treatment free communities; accusing them of being animal abusers and unscientific clueless hippies. I have seen the TF beekeepers accusing conventional beekeepers of poisoning bees and honey with mite treatments and encouraging the survival of a weakened gene pool.

    I say, enough! I don't think it's a stretch to say that most beekeepers care about the well being of their stock. Whether they are TF or not. It's good to have different views, but some of the name calling and finger pointing that comes out of some of these posts is just unnecessary.

    I spent a year doing research before investing in my first hives. I've learned from books, hands on with local beekeepers, and gone through online resources and forums like these. I've met with beekeepers who used treatment and those who don't. I, personally, have made an educated decision to practice TF methods but I still highly respect the methods my peers who do treat. My peers who treat are also respectful of my decision not to and still offer their support where it does not conflict with my own methods. I would like to see more of that in the online community.

    As we enter 2017, I can only hope we can stop blaming each other and instead appreciate the different approaches and understand that we all care about and want the best for our bees.
    This post to start this thread is nothing more than a stick to stir up a pot of discontent, the very discontent you say you abhor. So why did you post it? Nothing to share as far as your beekeeping management and success (or failure), no questions asked about beekeeping practices, no answers given for those who may be seeking answers. You are one of the very posters that cause the dissent and discontent.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    west central Arkansas
    Posts
    1,005

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    I think some of what you see involves the pitfalls of online communication. There are times when forms of non-verbal communication could completely change the tone of a conversation. There are also people who find themselves suddenly emboldened when the conversation doesn't require sitting in front of a fellow human being and treating them as such.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    6,704

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    If it is for the sake of discussion then I don't see anything wrong with this post. Whether or not it is
    a tf operation is only our preference. It depends on how much stress a beekeeper can take when
    seeing the bees infested with the mites and DWVs on each new hatch cycle. I did a little bee experiment
    this season by making a mite bomb on purpose. Now all the big fat winter bees are thriving with minimal
    mites 1-2 per inspection. Luckily, the mite bomb hive is still surviving with 1-8 mites per inspection. Still I
    will let this experiment continue until the Spring time to see the result. It is a good feeling to see many
    big fat healthy winter bees thriving again. The mites will be here to stay for sure. If they don't originate from
    my hives then they will pick up from outside somewhere. The only way is to manage them so that you will have
    some bees to keep, hopefully. This coming year will be my best year ever yet now that the mites are finally under control.
    As long as you still have bees then you are still a beekeeper!
    Don't mix foreign bees into a virgin hive. She might get balled 100% of the time! When will you ever learn, huh?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Quote Originally Posted by RayMarler View Post
    This post to start this thread is nothing more than a stick to stir up a pot of discontent, the very discontent you say you abhor. So why did you post it? Nothing to share as far as your beekeeping management and success (or failure), no questions asked about beekeeping practices, no answers given for those who may be seeking answers. You are one of the very posters that cause the dissent and discontent.
    oh please!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    The point I'm trying to make is that it's extremely difficult for new beekeepers to choose treatment free or not when they are performing research on forums where the views are so extreme in both preferences that it puts the newbee in the position of "I'm a terrible beekeeper if I choose x". I would think both schools of thought want to welcome more new beekeepers into the field to learn about these amazing creatures and maybe even go into the honeybee product business.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Champaign, Illinois
    Posts
    2,189

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Part of being a beekeeper is dealing with other beekeepers and "picking their brains". Careful tho because they eventually want to pick yours.
    It's easy to wear your methodology on your shoulder after you've had some success. Have been guilty of that too.
    The bees have a way of humbling a beekeeper though.

    The main thing is to have fun messin' with bugs imo. If people don't like how you raise your bugs then...

    And then there are the honey buyers. It did not take me long to realize that me going to club meetings and spilling my guts on my management practices might somehow affect sales. One day another beekeeper wanted some honey. After that one picked my brain for 90 minutes+ over a $5 honey sale my whole yack yack about bees ended.

    Some people want to believe that honeybees are zero maintenance free-range wild things so I let them.
    Internet credibility is an oxymoron

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    7,838

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    grant, i believe ray's point was that arguing about arguing is still arguing, and i tend to agree.

    those looking for a tf kumbaya experience may want to consider sol's forum or facebook page where dissenting views are not allowed.

    from my perspective the tone and quality of exchange is much improved compared to when i first joined the forum. from what i have heard from some of the longer timers it was even worse before that. shoot, there hasn't been a deleted post in the tf subforum for over 100 days.

    seriously, the number of squeaky wheels on either side of the approach has dwindled down to less than a handful. the discussions have become more centered on ground truthing and are less driven by trying to win converts to this way or that.

    with respect to a newbee trying to formulate an approach based on the diverse experiences shared here from all sorts of beekeepers scattered across the four corners of the globe, i say heaven help them.

    i have consistently put forth that the best thing for a beginner to do is to seek out and ascertain what is going on with the experienced beekeepers in their own neck of the woods, at least to glean a jumping in point from which to deviate from if so inclined.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  19. #19
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Worcester, MA
    Posts
    185

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    Well said squarepeg. I've read your posts and you are always thorough and even toned. I'm definitely not shunning dissenting views. I thought I covered that earlier

    You may be, and I hope you are, right that the tone has become more tolerant. I appreciate everyone's input today. Kumbaya!

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Morro Bay, California, USA
    Posts
    2,035

    Default Re: Accepting each others beekeeping methods: my first year perspective

    I believe everyone should perform their own experiments. Set up a TF yard and a conventional one, and observe the differences.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •