Re: Here is Where I'm At - How Do You Suggest I Move Forward?
This thread has helped me decide what direction to go.
I've been back in bees one year, and have been considering the various ways to manage them. I just hit a home run on lumber. I'm picking up 2,000 2' lengths of 1x6 this weekend for a very good price. I plan to make 5 frame deeps out of all of it. We all bring our talents to the table. What I lack in beek skills can be compensated for by being a carpenter.
I've also found most beeks selling bees around here to be totally lacking in customer skills. Probably one reason Lauri had such good luck selling queens. (Congrats Lauri!) Who wants to do business with a gruff old beek when they can talk to a nice person interested in cheerfully answering questions? The fact is, I am a gruff old beek, but I can still conduct business cheerfully and with sincere interest in my customer's welfare.
I've found setting up and managing nucs fairly easy like MP says.
Raising queens is another story. I'm not sure my eyesight will allow that on any large scale. I see eggs and larva easy enough, but scanning for the queen has become quite a chore with age, just like scanning shelves for a particular part at the hardware store has become much more time consuming.
I'm using Mel's notching technique to make QC's and have found that very easy as well for use in nucs, but finding that queen again to cage her even in a nuc is a challenge.
So my direction will probably be focused on nucs and honey until someone invents a queen detector.