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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Sandy Ridge,NC
    Posts
    110

    Default Selling nucs and queens with mites

    I have been beekeeping for awhile now. Over the years I have purchased queens from breeder all over the USA. I have a good mix of bees Italian, Russian, Cordovan and Carniolan. I have good bees they always produce honey and I loose very few to no hives a year. I have sold nucs to a few local beekeepers and given them queens. Everyone seems to like them, but I have mites. My bees seem to live with them, I have never treated them for mites and I rarely loose a hive. My concern is that a beekeeper may infest there yard with mites from my nucs. I was wanting to sell about 30 to 40 nucs this spring and queens. I have never treated my nucs but would you treat them before you sale them?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,383

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    It depends, some people dont want bees that have been treated at all. Even bees or packages that are "miteless" will pick up mites from other colonies or even in the field. Its totally up to you, but my thinking now is to treat my main colonies and atleast knock the mite numbers down substantially before making splits. Brood breaks will also slow the mites in nuc colonies.

    My mind has changed a lot since I started bee keeping, I went from treatment free to treating with Oxalic Acid vapor, atleast I will as soon as my vaporizer comes in!! I lost my first hive this year to mites which opened my eyes!! And it was a very strong double deep 10 framer.

    Personally I wouldnt treat your nucs, I would leave that up to the new owner, its their decision and part of animal husbandry to take care of their bees as they see fit.
    Coyote Creek Bees

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Baytown, TX., USA.
    Posts
    651

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    I would just print out the statement you just wrote above and make sure every buyer reads it prior to the sale, maybe even put it on the bill of sale. Probably would kill a few sales but Bweaver has a similar statement on their web site and they sell a lot of bees. Honeybeegenetics does the same as do others. I think M. Bush does the same. Check it out, print it out, sleep well!
    Julysun elevation 23 feet. 4 Hives, 2 years.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,887

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Quote Originally Posted by ashb82 View Post
    I have never treated my nucs but would you treat them before you sale them?
    You need to change your perception, not your mite [non]treatment method. Some customers will pay extra to get bees that are survivors without being treated. Look around! Here's one that advertises no treatment:

    http://www.arnoldhoneybeeservices.co..._for_sale.html

    Italian: Bred from resistant survivor stock. No chemicals used for ten years. Relatively gentle and calm. Strong disposition to brood rearing which provides a large population for nectar collection and continues even during nectar slowdowns, resulting in high stored food consumption during the inactive winter months. Overwinters well, builds up quickly in spring. Sometimes exhibits robbing behavior.
    ultracrepidarian >> noting or pertaining to a person who criticizes, judges, or gives advice outside of his expertise

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Jefferson County, WA, USA
    Posts
    132

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Why would you start treating when you have not had a problem with mites? It sounds like your mangement practices are successful. I would sell them untreated. Let others treat if they choose.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,368

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    you can never tell about a queen's nor nuc's mite resistance until the colony proves itself.

    i will be selling bees that have never been treated, but i will make sure that all buyers knows this doesn't guarantee anything.

    i will also want to satisfy myself that they know how to check for mites and have some method for preventing collapse.

    i don't care if they treat or not, but i'll make sure that the bees are sold to someone competent, or someone at least committed to becoming competent.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Sandy Ridge,NC
    Posts
    110

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites


    Quote Originally Posted by monrovi View Post
    Why would you start treating when you have not had a problem with mites? It sounds like your mangement practices are successful. I would sell them untreated. Let others treat if they choose.
    I sold some to a older guy that kind of made a big deal that the nucs I sold him had mites, and he told some of the guys in his bee club. At the time he made a big deal out of it and I did not know how to handle the situation. But he called me over the holiday wanting to no if I was going to sell any nucs or queens. I ask him about the bees he purchased from me, he says he was very impressed with them.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,383

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    [QUOTE=ashb82;880566 But he called me over the holiday wanting to no if I was going to sell any nucs or queens. I ask him about the bees he purchased from me, he says he was very impressed with them.[/QUOTE]

    I would not sell to this guy ever again!! He is slandering your name around the bee club yet wants more nucs from you? I would tell him I will give him a special deal, $200 per nuc for him. I would also tell him how I dont appreciate him bad mouthing my bees, you know, the ones that he is impressed with, and leave it at that. I would also tell him to appollogize and stand up infront of the bee meeting and say how impressed he is with your bees.
    Coyote Creek Bees

  9. #9

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    I sell nucs every spring in Ohio and they are not treated. Some people don't want bees that have been treated. When beekeepers pick their nucs up I explain to them that mites are a problem in every bee hive in the country, it is something they need to monitor throughout the year and these bees have not been treated. It is up to them to decide to treat or not treat and what product to use.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    2,918

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Some things, including mites. I figure if i don't buy my bees with them they will have them eventually. I am either prepared to deal with them or I am not. If the seller knew they had mites I woudl want them to tell me though.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,572

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    It is not slander (or libel) if the statements are true.....you want to blacklist someone for telling the truth? Who do time want to cater to...customers who lie?

    Deknow

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    2,918

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Who says what the customer said is truth? The guy evidently had no idea what to do about mites. An indication he did not know very well what he was doing with bees.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Location
    Stafford, Virginia
    Posts
    289

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Selling Nuc's is one of the most difficult aspect of beekeeping IMO. It seems every customer, especially those new to beekeeping, has a pre-conceived notion of what they should look like. When the reality does not live up to thier expectations, they vent to anyone who will listen. You never hear about the great job you did, but you hear about that one which wasn't up to thier expectations.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
    Posts
    3,572

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    I can only go by what I'm told. The op said he has mites. The customer claimed the bees had mites.
    I didn't read anything that indicated the customers level of experience, or if he "knew how to handle" mites.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,368

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    happy new year dean.

    do you have an estimate as to what level of mite infestation your treatment free colonies are able to tolerate?
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Saskatchewan, Canada
    Posts
    282

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Just advertise them as treatment free. When the customer comes to pick them up let them know there is a mite count and if they want them treated charge them extra for it.
    Keep selling nucs to the guy who complained, he might just turn around and be your best free advertizing around

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Lottsburg, Virginia USA
    Posts
    132

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Guys right now I am not sure whether I am raising bee's or raising mites, over the last two years I brought in 4 GA packages and if I knew then what I know now I would of treated them with formic acid to knock down any mites they were carrying before hiving them I would also have treated the nuc's I brought in and also the local frames of bee's I started with. I have no doubt that the might problem I have is from the bee's I imported to my area. After saying that I am doing as much as I can to requeen my hives with so called varoa resistant stock, but the proof of varoa resistance or tolerance will be in the outcome down the road.
    Johno

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    4,368

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    johno, how are your hives doing at this time?
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Lottsburg, Virginia USA
    Posts
    132

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    Squarepeg, out of my 24 hives I have lost 1 I never expected to lose, a carni hive that overwintered last year with a baseball sized cluster and I did not think they would have problems this year but they froze to death around capped brood and some eggs. A GA package where they were remoing capped brood and were full of mites looks a bit weak and there is another hive that failed to requeen on a number of occasions, they raise 3 queens from given cells but seem to have lost 2 on mating flights or something so I am not sure of that one. I see sighns ofDWV around some of the other hives but time will tell if I am going to lose any more. I am overwintering 3 nuc's as replacements and they are doing good even drawing a little comb. Most have good stores a few low on stores are getting fondant and pollen patties although on days thy can fly they are bringing in yellow pollen, I see we have some dandelion flowers around the area, that is about where I am at the moment just waiting for the end of February.
    Johno

  20. #20
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Livermore, CA
    Posts
    1,383

    Default Re: Selling nucs and queens with mites

    I have to assume that most nucs have mites in them, wether I chose to treat them or let things run their course is up to me. But to assume that there isnt ONE mite in a nuc these days is obsurd isnt it?? Correct me if I am wrong?

    And the flag that raised my attention is how the person complaining told others in the club that his bees were junk basically...............yet wants to buy more bees off the OP because they were excellent producers?? Isnt that Slandering, making a false statement? When I start selling nucs I am going to have pamphlets printed up that reiterate the things I will tell the customer. I am going to disclose that I treat to control mites, of course I will do this on the phone so the customer can decide before making a commitment to buy the bees.
    Coyote Creek Bees

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