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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Indiana new beekeeper

    A good day to all, I am sitting here in midstate Indiana looking out at the frosted garden and planning my bee yard for next spring.
    I am going non chemical and will be using top bar hives, probably 2 to start. Since I am in an urban area I am planing and planting plenty of bee friendly things arround my home although everything I've read says my bees will most likely go elsewhere to forage.
    right now my very first hive,which I am building myself, is sitting in my kitchen with the glue drying(non toxic and waterproof). It's been interesting as I find cutting a staight line is not one of my better skills and I reall need to purchase a couple of bar clamps. on that note sewing thread wrapped arround and pulled tight makes a fair clamp
    I am looking forward to having my bees next year-- just hoping I can find a seller who is using the TBH and has gone non chemical as regressing bees to non chemical use results in frequent die off.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    7,053

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Welcome MM!
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Thank you. Glad to have people to exchange ideas with

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,576

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Welcome to Beesource!

    Quote Originally Posted by muddymom View Post
    I am looking forward to having my bees next year-- just hoping I can find a seller who is using the TBH and has gone non chemical as regressing bees to non chemical use results in frequent die off.
    Its not clear to me why your desired source of bees would need to be using a TBH. Even if you wanted to buy bees with comb already built (a TBH 'nuc'), you will likely have difficulty finding comb to match your TBH dimensions/proportions.

    Most likely, a package (typically 3 lbs of bees plus a queen) will be your best bet for populating your TBH hives. If you can't find "non chemically" raised bees within driving distance from Castle IN, here is one source of "no chemicals" bees for you to consider:

    http://www.arnoldhoneybeeservices.co..._for_sale.html
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    My thought to buying bees from someone using natural comb is that I am interested in them having already converted the cell size from the large size found in todays bee hives back to the smaller cell size that occur naturally.
    I did check out the site you suggested and am having them send me an order form. Russians aren't my first choice but the fact that they are raised without chemicals is a big plus

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,576

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    If you check the Arnold site again, you will find they offer Italians as well as Russians. I agree that Italians are a better choice for a new beekeeper, compared to Russians.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Welcome and congratulations on your start toward beekeeping!

    I started this year and am taking a similar path with two TBH and no chemicals.

    I purchased a package of Italian bees and later re-queened with a New World Carniolan (NWC) and a late summer Buckfast nuc that I did a chop and crop on. The new queen really turned the package hive around (enough that I think they might survive the winter) and the nuc may suprise me. My package bees regressed fairly quick as they started on no comb. The Carniolan bees were faster at putting up stores in September and I think it was because they fly in cooler weather. They were out earlier on cool mornings and on cool days that the Buckfast bees weren't out flying. (Not knocking the Buckfast bees, they are GREAT, they just don't seem to fly as cold but that may be because I got them out of MS and they aren't acclimated to cool temperatures yet.)

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Anderson, Indiana
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Welcome MM. We have an East Central Indiana Bee Association that meets the 2nd Tuesday every month. We also have a all day Bee School in February with over 600 attendees. This might be something that may interest you. Lots of good beekeepers with all different answers...Ha

    Rick

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Boone County, IN, USA
    Posts
    74

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Rich is on to something. There are a lot of great resources near you, especially a new beek. Get connected with the ISBA, hoosierbuzz.freeforums.org, http://hoosierbuzz.com; or the IBA, http://indianabeekeeper.com. Both groups have a host of resources and other beeks who'll help you out.

    Jeff Singletary

    www.rjhoney.com

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Collen. Thanks for the encouragement,can you tell me where yoou got your package from. Also where did you get the NWC queen.
    I would like to have a package of NWC bees as we tend to have cooler temperatures for longer periods of time-zone 5b. a lot of the plants here bloom durring this cool spring weather and bees willing to forage in cooler temps would be an advantage.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Muddymom,

    I ordered the Italian package from a company in Illinois but they subcontracted and I actually got bees from Georgia. They were good to work with but I don't recommended that route. The NWC queen was from Strachan in California and they were great to work with and got the queen to me in short order. The bees love her (large retinue) and that queen has really turned the hive around as far as brood and stores but I have noticed the bees are not as good at keeping the hive clean as my Buckfast bees are. This is my first year and I have a lot to learn but I think after my Buckfast bees acclimate they will do better as treatment free bees than my NWCs due to that trait. My very inexperienced recommendation is to try to find local treatment free bees to start with. If you don't find them, look for a treatment free queen of the type you want and requeen them. There is a big Michigan association that has some bee vendors listed on their website, I will look for the link.

    I did a quick search but didn't find any treatment free bee vendors listed on their website. These aren't treatment free but it looks like Noble Apiaries in California ships Carniolan packages. Strachan (they really were WONDERFUL to work with and the queen is really great) and Olivarez both sell the queens (both in California). Your local bee club might have more info. They also might get together as a group and order packages and queens. The one here did. You might check on their website.
    Last edited by Colleen O.; 11-19-2012 at 07:31 AM. Reason: typo

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Muddymom, you also might want to check out Gold Star Honeybees. That is where I bought my purchased hive from and it looks like they start selling treatment free bee packages in January. I'm not sure if they ship out of state or what type of bees but it would be worth a look. The owner was really responsive and helpful and they have a lot of good info on their website. She makes a version of TBH based on Phil Chandler's design. I think she also has a book out now.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Brown County, IN
    Posts
    2,034

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Hello and Welcome!

    As Rich and Jeff said, getting involved with a local club and the State associations is a great way to find mentors and get connected to other beekeepers:
    http://www.in.gov/dnr/entomolo/files...eper_assoc.pdf

    I also agree with Radar that if you're planning a TBH, your best bet is just to get a package. Whether the seller was "non chemical" or not is of little consequence, since the bees from the package will be nearly all dead in about six weeks, replaced by new bees raised in your non-chemical TBH. I'd recommend ordering a package from Graham's in Morgantown:
    http://www.grahamsbeeworks.com/
    I've bought many packages (and nucs) over the years from them. Roger drives them up from down south, so they don't spend several days being shipped. (As a side note, Roger has experiemented with different TBH designs in conjunction with some military initiatives at Camp Atterbury.) Graham's are also a good source for Indiana-raised, survivor-stock queens.

    Hope we can meet at a bee meeting sometime!
    Indy

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Thank you for the link to graham's site. I will be contacting them about bees

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Am in contact wj th Goldstar. Not sure yet if she is able to ship bees. Its a little far to drive.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    It looks like most packages are out of either the south or California. You might be best served getting a cheap package (or two if you plan on the two hives people recommend to stay queen-right) and buying quality treatment free queens to re-queen them.

    If my bees don't overwinter instead of the package or nuc route I plan to try to lure in a swarm as a replacement next year. A friend of mine had two stop in his yard looking for a home in the past few years so I know a likely spot to put a swarm box.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Collen. Sounds like a good plan capturing swarm if yours don't overwinter. Found a beekeeper outside Indianapolis who will be bringing nucs up this spring.the bees are a mix of several strains, nothing beats hybrid vigor. He has good luck with them says they are resistant.
    Have one hive almost done, debating painting outsides as they are pine.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Would the nuc be a TBH nuc? I did a chop and crop on the Buckfast nuc I got from Mississippi and while it went okay most don't recommend it. Make sure to find out if they are on foundationless, wired wax, or plastic foundation, etc... I'll talk about it with you in more detail if that is the way you decide to go. I took quite a few pics which might be helpful too.

    I painted a flower on my GoldStar hive and then used shellac over it to preserve it. Not my finest work but I was in a hurry and had to use the paints I had on hand. The shellac preseved the wood on that side nicely and in retrospect I should have sprayed the other side too. I plan to paint a different flower on my cedar hive over Christmas. For aesthetics and also to help the bees orient.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Location
    New Castle,Indiana
    Posts
    27

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    If I get a nuc it will be a standard langstrom style witg foundation, he didn't say if wax or plastic. Been watching videos on how to put them on top of the TBH in hopes they will willingly move down. Seems like extra work. He also has a limited number of overwintered nucs but they are out of my price range. We do have a TBH apiary in the area. Next meeting I need to ask about maybe getting some bees from him. Even an empty section of brood comb would help. I worry about bringing southern raised bees up. They have a larger SHB problem down there.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    St. Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    626

    Default Re: Indiana new beekeeper

    Quote Originally Posted by muddymom View Post
    We do have a TBH apiary in the area. Next meeting I need to ask about maybe getting some bees from him. Even an empty section of brood comb would help. I worry about bringing southern raised bees up. They have a larger SHB problem down there.
    Great idea on contacting the TBH apiary.

    You are right to be concerned about bringing pests up with the bees. SHB either found me awful fast or they hitched a ride in my packages. I didn't have wax worms until I brought the nuc home and I know they had them at their apiary. I know some small hive beetles came along with the nuc, I crushed a few hiving it. The Buckfast bees I got are also "Tiger", which are bees that have been bred to combat SHB and deal with their slime better than most. Between them and me I think I got rid of the pests but I also hope our winter is cold enough to kill any that remain (but not the bees please! ) The pests hitching a ride in is another reason catching a swarm sounds like a good idea to me for replacement bees.
    Last edited by Colleen O.; 11-27-2012 at 07:58 AM.

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