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  1. #21
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    am i safe in assuming that ya'll aren't in a big hurry to shake out all your colonies onto honey super cell?
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  2. #22
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    In my case you're correct in assuming... I have no intention to regress. All I've read on small cell is that it really doesn't work. And I've had great success being treatment free on "large cell".
    Regards,
    Steven
    "If all you have is a hammer, the whole world is a nail." - A.H. Maslow

  3. #23
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    same here steven, thanks for your reply.

    i would have liked for the author to have joined the discussion, but i guess he his unable or unwilling to do so. i really wanted to give the benefit of the doubt...

    i guess i'll wrap up what i have to say about my take on the book.

    first, i feel like the subtitle "Everything the budding beekeeper needs for a healthy, productive hive" is, well, overstated. i could give examples, but i won't out of fairness to the author.

    second, although there are no direct derogatory comments to the effect, a beginner reading this book could not help but come away from it thinking that the last thing in the world they would want to be is a beekeeper who feeds, uses standard size cells, or uses any kind of treatments.

    with regards to no treatments, there is a slippery slope type comment that is similar to the treatment treadmill comment made by the ex-moderator of the tfb forum on this site, discouraging any use whatsoever of any kind of treatment.

    interestingly, i just discovered that mike bush suggests on his site, that one monitor for mites and consider using a noncontaminating treatment if needed during the regression process. in my view, this is the more 'practical' approach, especially for beginners.


    so, while there is a lot of good information in the book, for me, the bias it contains overides the usefulness of it. jmho.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  4. #24
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    1. I have barely been on Beesource in the last several days (I don't think I've posted anything since this thread was started). I'm not really sure what is expected of me here...I'm running a business, recovering from Lyme disease, keeping honey bottled and stocked for our holiday market (that Ramona is doing 7 days a week...from the sat after thanksgiving to the day before new years), keeping our wholesale accounts (30+) stocked, doing my best to assist a grad student who needs emergency samples from the north for a thesis, planning our curriculum for our 6 session beginners bee classes, 3 session advanced topics, 3 lectures and a possible 2 day beekeeping intensive for MIT's interterm, planning our talks for someone else's art project (a giant inflatable skep installation), planning our talks for some local bee clubs, and at least 3-4 other writing projects that i'm working on, building equipment for our bottling facility ...+ about 40 colonies of bees. I refuse to apologize for beesource taking the back burner. I don't have a job or other income. Any time I spend here is time taken away from working.

    It is easy, to ask questions. It is easy to give quick answers. It is time consuming to answer any good question thoroughly....I have several posts in the "what would brother adam do..." thread that I started to work on last week that I have not had time to come back to. Note that the information I have already presented on that thread wrt VSH is not something you will find discussed in any book, in the VSH breeders forum, or anywhere else online. I am very happy that Joe chimed in on that one, as everything else you will hear about VSH (from virtually any source) is that it is the best way to breed for varroa tolerance...yet, I think hardly anyone (including those on the VSH Breeders forum understands the downsides, or even does any kind of proper test for VSH. You get all this from me because I care enough to stick my neck out and to spend valuable time explaining the details that are often otherwise left out.

    2. Oldtimer, my sincere and public apology. I dropped the ball in sending you a book...my fault, my oversight, my responsibility. Thanks for the reminder, I will send one out to you on Monday inscribed with an apology.

    3. The book is very much based on our own experience. At the time of writing, we were using mostly top entrances (with no bottom entrance)....we decided (from our own experience) that there were some issues with management in this kind of setup that were difficult to explain/quantify, so we recommended more standard equipment than we were actually using at the time. We regret (in hindsight) suggesting orchards as being good places for bees. At the time of our writing, we had used HSC extensively, and not ever used the PF series....we had heard about them, but were not willing to recommend something that we hadn't used. We have since used the pf frames quite a bit (we buy them wax coated as any beginner would), and like them very much. We no longer recommend HSC, as the acceptance time and brood density make it a poor second place to the pf frames.

    Outside of the above specific issues, everything we recommend in the book is still what we recommend, and is based on what we are actually doing.

    I don't think there are any other books that explain what bee space actually is (as opposed to giving it a measurement), that talk about the hive as a complex adaptive system, that stress the importance of microbes in the hive. I am very proud of the way we were able to stress the fundamentals while leaving room for the reader to develop their own plan based upon their own needs.

    As far as bias goes...every book has biases. Some will tell you that if you don't treat your bees they will die. Our biases are based upon our own experience, and what we recommend is what we actually do.

    There are plenty of resources to tell you what to treat with and how....many of those resources will tell you how "green" the "soft treatments" are (which is so far from true it is sad to see the claims repeated over and over). If you want to use treatments, you will have no problem finding resources to help you do just that.

    I'm not going to recommend something I don't do. I'm not going to sugar coat (or sugar dust) my opinions....why the heck would anyone want to read a book that tells you how/why to do something the author doesn't do?

    deknow
    Last edited by deknow; 12-08-2012 at 09:33 AM. Reason: formatting

  5. #25
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    wrt to cover subtitle, "Everything the budding beekeeper needs for a healthy, productive hive".

    You have to understand that this is a book published by penguin...the worlds largest book publisher. I don't believe that any other beginning beekeeping book comes from "the publishing industry" (except the dummies book...but the dummies publisher only publishes dummies books, it is not part of a larger publishing group).

    We were hired to write the book, had no say in the title or subtitle...but had almost complete freedom wrt the content of the book. The price we paid for this lack of control? Well, we were paid a reasonable advance for a first book, our book has very good distribution, and is available new from Amazon for under $11. In addition, we had very good people to deal with from conception to final editing (although editing is never perfect). So, I should feel bad that a blurb on the cover of a commercially available product is a bit overstated? Really?

    deknow

  6. #26
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    many thanks dean.

    that explains why i am not hearing much about hsc.

    i thank you for your work and your willingness to contribute freely to the discussion here on beesource. i know there are many here including me that value your input.

    in the end, each of us a personal view on how to approach beekeeping, and i absolutely respect everyone's right to their own approach.

    at this point, my personal approach is somewhere between 'you better treat your bees or they will die', and 'a single use of any treatment sends you down a slippery slope'.

    i am new, and trying to learn. my desire is to always be looking for ways improve my approach, and that is my motivation for raising these questions.

    anyway, i do wish you every success with all your endeavors, the best of health, and a great holiday season and new year.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  7. #27
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    Barry...Why don't you just recommend the Penn State On Line Course, for $189.00 to everyone. HA!!! They won't need to read a book. That should get them started and likely catch up to the other thread. Apparently that one will never die.

    cchoganjr

  8. #28
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    Hey much thanks, I am very much looking forwards to reading this book.

    Was that phrased correctly? You have 40 hives?

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    as everything else you will hear about VSH (from virtually any source) is that it is the best way to breed for varroa tolerance...yet, I think hardly anyone (including those on the VSH Breeders forum understands the downsides, or even does any kind of proper test for VSH. deknow
    I know what you mean. Many breeders freeze brood, see how fast the bees clean it up, and think that is testing for VSH.

    In my country, the VSH breeding program which has been running for 8 years now, DOES test for VSH properly. In the "wild", many hives exhibit some vsh naturally. The way we test, is to pick the caps off 400 cells and examine the contents. Most cells that had a mite move in will contain a mite family. But a few will have no adult mite, but maybe a male egg, and some feaces. This is evidence that the bees detected the mite and removed the capping, letting the mite out, after which the cell was re- sealed. This does not kill the mite, but does interupt her breeding cycle. Using this testing technique, it has been found that the general bee population in my country has a few of the best hives with up to 20% of the cells that a varroa entered, having been uncapped by the bees and the varroa mite let out and her breeding interupted. This is called 20% vsh. The hives with the best vsh % have been selectively bred from over the last 8 years, using II. We now have bees that are as good as 80% vsh. At this level, the researchers were having trouble actually finding enough mites in a hive to be able to do valid research.
    The problem, thus far, is fixing the trait. Seems it's linked to many different genes not just one. They can take an 80% vsh queen, and mate it to an 80% vsh drone, but not all the progeny will be 80% vsh they will be quite a wide range.
    The work has gone into a new phase where there is a 3 year plan to attempt to fix the trait (or that's my understanding of what's happening ATM).
    BTW, proper vsh does not result in patchy brood, that would be hygeine, where bees toss out the larvae. The vsh we are breeding for does not involve removing the larvae, just uncapping them, then re-capping them after the mite moves out.

    8 years ago when this breeding program was set up, the researchers identified several means by which bees resist mites. By doing some maths though, it was considered that trying to select for all of them at once was going to slow the program down considerably. It was 'decided it made sense to just shoot for one trait at a time. VSH was considered the easiest to reliably ID correctly, so that's what they are working on. No concrete plans are in place as to what varroa resistance mechanism to go for next, but the general thoughts are that once vsh is being reliably and usefully distributed around the country, some other mechanism will be targeted, to add to that.

    The first VSH queens have been made available for sale to the public from this program, this year.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  9. #29
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    I feel there are a few more things that have to be said here....pardon me if they come off as defensive.

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg
    i thank you for your work and your willingness to contribute freely to the discussion here on beesource. i know there are many here including me that value your input.

    in the end, each of us a personal view on how to approach beekeeping, and i absolutely respect everyone's right to their own approach.
    That is all well and good...but from my perspective, it is hard to reconcile this with what you have posted.

    Quote Originally Posted by squarepeg View Post
    i would have liked for the author to have joined the discussion, but i guess he his unable or unwilling to do so. i really wanted to give the benefit of the doubt...
    I did nothing deserving of _not_ giving me the benefit of the doubt. You might recall that one of my last posts in the "what would brother adam do" thread, talked about how busy I am. You certainly aren't required to keep track of when I am or am not posting, but if you had clicked on my user name and checked my most recent posts, you would have seen that I haven't posted anywhere on beesource (or any other forum) since this thread started....the above (aparantly not giving me the benefit of the doubt...whatever that means) was posted 4 days after you started the thread. I resent the fact that I have to sound so defensive for not posting in 4 days to a thread you wanted me to participate in.
    first, i feel like the subtitle "Everything the budding beekeeper needs for a healthy, productive hive" is, well, overstated. i could give examples, but i won't out of fairness to the author.
    If you have a legitimate and specific concern(s), I don't see why it would be unfair to the author to air them. I think it is extremely unfair to take an obvious marketing blurb from the cover of the book and say that it doesn't include absolutely everything. I can break an unbreakable comb, and I don't expect that a band called "free beer" is going to serve free beer at the concert.

    I just grabbed a few beekeeping books off the shelf:
    On the back cover of "The Complete Guide to Beekeeping" (Morse), it says, "...Dr. Morse has covered all practical aspects of beekeeping in clear and concise language so that anyone readin ghis book should be well on his way to becoming one of the best beekeepers." _all_ practical aspects? ...really?

    On the back cover of "Hive Management" (Bonney): "Hive Management offers concise, up to date information on the whole range of beekeeping tasks...." _the whole range_?

    On the back cover of "Storey's Guide to Keeping Honey Bees" (Sanford): "Storey's Guide to Keeping Honey Bees Will Guide you through every step of beekeeping,...." _every step_?

    Do you sense a theme here? That a bit of hyperbole on a cover quote is pretty much standard in the book business? That it would be absurd to critique any of these books simply because they didn't live up to promises on the cover of including absolutely everything?

    Pardon me for critiquing your critique here. If there is something you think is missing, by all means say what it is.

    second, although there are no direct derogatory comments to the effect, a beginner reading this book could not help but come away from it thinking that the last thing in the world they would want to be is a beekeeper who feeds, uses standard size cells, or uses any kind of treatments.
    I think you are paying us a compliment with the above.....that our thoughts are expressed clearly in our writing...the goal of any writing with a point...with something to say.


    with regards to no treatments, there is a slippery slope type comment that is similar to the treatment treadmill comment made by the ex-moderator of the tfb forum on this site, discouraging any use whatsoever of any kind of treatment.
    Yes, and I would make the same arguments supporting the "slippery slope" analogy that I have done on beesource. As long as treating remains an option for dealing with issues, treatments will be used to deal with issues. You are not treatment free if you are going to treat when you have a high mite count....because at some point, you will always have a high mite count.
    interestingly, i just discovered that mike bush suggests on his site, that one monitor for mites and consider using a noncontaminating treatment if needed during the regression process. in my view, this is the more 'practical' approach, especially for beginners.
    ...more interestingly is that Mike Bush does not monitor for mites, and isn't using treatments.

    so, while there is a lot of good information in the book, for me, the bias it contains overides the usefulness of it. jmho.
    ...and can you name another book (besides Michael Bush's) that even considers the possibility of keeping bees without treatments? Certainly Conrad's or Chandler's....certainly not any of the more mainstream books. If we can agree that _some people_ are able to keep bees with no treatments...that it is possible to keep bees without treatments, then why are the vast bulk of beekeeping books not expressing their own bias (that your bees will die if you don't use treatments)...even though that bias is demonstrably false? Again, would you really rather read a book where the author writes about practices they don't actually follow? You really think that I should write a book that tells people to and how to treat even though I don't? ....or that only "mainstream beekeeping practices" should be included in any book?

    With all of the above said...there is quite a bit in our book besides treatment free, no feeding and small cell....none of which you have chosen to comment on...except to say that it is all overridden by the authors bias, resulting in a useless (the opposite of useful) book.

    To quote you again:
    in the end, each of us a personal view on how to approach beekeeping, and i absolutely respect everyone's right to their own approach.
    ...but I shouldn't write about it?

    deknow

  10. #30
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    @Dean - of course every book has its biases - and I've no problems with critical readers pointing out those biases. I recently had the task of choosing the book to use for our bee school. Yours was one of the ones I considered, so were Kim Flottom's, Jim Tew's and others. In the end I decided to go with The Beekeeper's Handbook, 4th Edition, as the book I was most comfortable with for teaching. While we won't be teaching to the text, we suggest that students browse certain chapters ahead of each class so they'll have an idea of what we're talking about. And yes we'll point out what I'm choosing to call divergent opinions - Kim's 8 frame mediums for brood chambers for example. We'll talk about IPM and the need to understand what is happening in the colony. I think the best result of our class will be for people to start keeping bees and be very cognizant of what foreign materials they are using in their hives and why - my personal bias is the the less chemicals the better, but live bees have a way of trumping dead bees.

    Small Cell will be presented as another divergent opinion.

    It is what I am comfortable with for presenting to new beekeepers.
    Master Beekeeper (EAS) and Master Gardener (U Maine CE) www.beeberrywoods.com

  11. #31
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    ...but I shouldn't write about it?

    deknow
    I guess the same can be said, but no one should be able to express their view about it? I think you're over reading into a lot of the quotes you used. JMO
    Regards, Barry

  12. #32
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    I guess the same can be said, but no one should be able to express their view about it?
    I welcome views...but squarepeg declined to be specific...the book didn't include "absolutely everything" that was promised on the cover (without naming one thing that was left out), has a bias towards no treatments, no feeding, and small cell, and uses the term "slippery slope". That's all well and good...but also rather superficial and general....there is a lot of information in that book....a lot to disucss.
    I don't want to make squarepeg feel badly...especially because he bought our book ... but I feel that I have been treated unfairly simply because I've been too busy to post for a week or so....in 4 days it went from "one of the better primers" to, essentially "useless". The way his posts evolved certainly don't inspire me to spend time talking thoughtfully about the regression process and HSC...that isn't to say that I won't discuss it, but I'm certainly not feeling inspired to do so right now.
    I am all for critique....but when critique consists of a few generalities tossed around, it isn't very useful to anyone.

    I think you're over reading into a lot of the quotes you used. JMO
    ...perhaps....but I can't help but wonder how our book went from
    it's one of the better primer's i've read, nice job dean and laurie.
    to
    so, while there is a lot of good information in the book, for me, the bias it contains overides the usefulness of it. jmho.
    in 4 days. The only thing that happened over those 4 days is that I didn't post to this thread.

    deknow

  13. #33
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    So I think the take away here is to at least post "hi" every couple days!
    Regards, Barry

  14. #34
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    ...as my commercial landlord is fond of saying when someone (including me) tries to get him to do something he doesn't want to do...
    "I don't work for you!"

    deknow

  15. #35
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    fwiw, we had to cut the appendix of our book out in order to fit everything (we had no say over the length, other than we were able to add a few pages to the total, and replace the appendix with important text). It did, however, get typeset. There are a number of beekeeping books we recommend (Andrew, you will note that the Beekeepers Handbook is one of our favorites, although I haven't seen the newest edition).
    http://beeuntoothers.com/AppendixBee.pdf

    deknow

  16. #36
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    i ready to be specific.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  17. #37
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    but first i would like to apologize for apparantly breaching an unwritten forum etiquitte.

    i didn't realize at the time, that it crosses a line when you post about someone not posting.

    i'm sorry dean.

    i would not have liked that either, and i will give you and everyone else on the forum the common respect from here on in that regard.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  18. #38
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    dean, are you still willing to answer a few questions that i, a beginner, have about your book's methods on starting beekeeping with treatment free small cell bees?
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  19. #39
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    "I don't work for you!"
    Not about me. Someone else was wondering where you were.
    Regards, Barry

  20. #40
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    Default Re: "the complete idiot's...

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    ...as my commercial landlord is fond of saying when someone (including me) tries to get him to do something he doesn't want to do...
    "I don't work for you!"

    deknow
    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    fwiw, we had to cut the appendix of our book out in order to fit everything (we had no say over the length, other than we were able to add a few pages to the total, and replace the appendix with important text). It did, however, get typeset. There are a number of beekeeping books we recommend (Andrew, you will note that the Beekeepers Handbook is one of our favorites, although I haven't seen the newest edition).
    http://beeuntoothers.com/AppendixBee.pdf

    deknow
    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    Not about me. Someone else was wondering where you were.
    thanks for posting that barry. i somehow totally missed seeing dean's posts #34 and #35 earlier today
    .
    dean, my apology to you is sincere, the option to accept it or not belongs to you and you alone.

    am i to infer that 'not working for you' means that you have not intention of following through with the purchasers and readers of your book?

    the first question i asked was very 'specific' it had to do with putting shook out non-regressed bees on hsc. you later answered, "We no longer recommend HSC, as the acceptance time and brood density make it a poor second place to the pf frames."

    so, the information i bought in your book is dated, even though book was only published two years ago.

    i had already scoured your:

    "www.TheCompleteIdiotsGuideToBeekeeping.com
    This is a portal to all manner of information, updates, clarifications,
    videos, and an interactive forum. We hope to see you there!
    Books"

    but i didn't see anything there about you no longer recommending hsc frames. (not a small detail for a beginner not to be updated on). if i missed it somehow, again my apologies. my intial question was my attempt to get you to clarify here on beesource.

    the appendix that got left out is a great list of resources, was i supposed get the change from hsc to pf there somewhere?

    some of the other 'specifics', branched off of starting out with hsc. for example, getting the colony 'droneright' is recommended in the book, but no mention of how that is done using hsc.

    there are yet other 'specifics', but i'm afraid this has turned into a p___ing contest that nobody can win, and i see no future in dragging everyone through that.

    as far as the publisher's role in what was or was not included, and their choice for the subtitle, maybe that's the way it goes in the publishing world, i have no experience with that. for me, i would like to think i would back out of the deal or publish it some other way, rather than put my name to something i didn't agree with.

    all of the positives i mentioned about your book are meant sincerely as well. i too am only human, and i gave the best, honest, and objective review i could.

    no ill will meant from this side dean, sorry for getting on your nerves.

    barry, i've decided to pursue my interest in these matters in the tfb forum, and i ask that you please close this thread.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

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