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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Jackson, MO
    Posts
    1,858

    Default Nucs or Packages?

    Some of the locals and I were talking about refilling winter dead-outs. What would you do, buy a package in early April or buy a nuc three weeks later at the end of April? Personally, I like nucs, but one of the prevailing points is both will be at the same point at the end of April, so it seems to boil down to the availability and price. I've also had some packages reject their queen so the nuc has the advantage there.

    Any thoughts and opinions on what you might prefer?

    Grant
    Jackson, MO
    Beekeeping With Twenty-five Hives: https://www.createspace.com/4152725

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Marysville, WA
    Posts
    477

    Default Re: Nucs or Packages?

    Last year I purchased 7 nucs and 5 packages. Hands down the nucs were better off with 6 of the 7 filling some to all of a super above 2 deeps. I had to feed the packages alot to build and fill just the 2 deeps without any surplus honey. They all did well but the nucs were defintily better off. I'm done with packages.
    Beekeeper? Shoot, my bees keep me!
    100 hives in Western Wa State

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Suffolk, VA
    Posts
    2,670

    Default Re: Nucs or Packages?

    For refilling a dead-out then a package may be the way to go, but this presumes that the dead colony didn't have brood disease and you're able to reuse all the old comb and any stores. Packages started on drawn comb really have a big advantage to those starting from foundation. Give them a frame (or 2) of capped brood and they may even make surplus honey. Packages are going for $75 to $85 and nucs are around $125, so you can buy 3 packages for about the same price as 2 nucs. Packages are anything but a sure thing and require more care and feeding, but most experienced beekeepers can manage them without to much issue. Don't get me wrong, I love nucs, particularly locally raised ones, but not every locality has access to the quantity demanded, particularly in April. Of course, there is also the fear many have about importing AHB in package bees, which has led to a near boycotting of packages by many of our local clubs. Is this warranted? Perhaps it is, but I really don't care to debate this issue.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,269

    Default Re: Nucs or Packages?

    ya, if you have equipment to fill, buy packages,
    if your expanding your ops, then buy nucs
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Santa Fe, NM
    Posts
    688

    Default Re: Nucs or Packages?

    with nucs you have an opportunity to evaluate the laying queen. You can also check for mite loads. With packages they throw in the mites for free...
    "Tradition becomes our security, and when the mind is secure it is in decay".....Krishnamurti

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,269

    Default Re: Nucs or Packages?

    I would not say evaluation is quite the opportunity as you may think, perhaps if your buying one or two and where as you get a pick of the lot
    but when ever I bought nucs, or sold them, its very rarely all the hives get inspected.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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