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Thread: young newbee

  1. #81
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Tigard, OR
    Posts
    119

    Default Re: young newbee

    and only today did I see my first non-bee critter, and I think it was a wasp (looked like a yellowjacket until I really got good look at the face) and it was just eating a dead bee under the hive, so I let it be.
    Last edited by Barry; 10-21-2013 at 01:09 PM.
    As for me, all I know is that I know nothing...
    - Socrates

  2. #82

    Default Re: young newbee

    Good to hear you enjoying the windows. It surely is a perfect way to learn something about bees.

    Winter is coming and you should begin preparations. I suggest feeding pollen patties and feed small amounts, so they finish the third box, buildup stores and produce fat winter bees.

    Think about and prepare for insulation, wind protection and how to keep them dry. A protected hive, lots of stores and healthy fatty bees is what they need now. Winters can be hard to bees and now is the time for preparations.
    Last edited by Barry; 10-21-2013 at 01:08 PM.

  3. #83
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Central BC, Canada
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: young newbee

    She had a great first season, and is planning on splitting her hive next summer (if it survives winter). She completed a workbook for kids, which was a fantastic resource:

    http://www.otago.ac.nz/genetics/otago038245.pdf

    She also took a beginner beekeeping course throught the local community college, and I sat in with her. Here is a page from her 'notes':

    image.jpg

    We would absolutely recommend working with the smaller Warre hives. It was a great way to focus on the basics of bee behaviour and observation, without the overwhelming equipment/manipulation issues of Langs. Then, you have the choice of keeping it simple or adding in equipment/manipulations as you gain confidence. WINDOWS = LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES. Can't emphasize that enough. Getting tucked away for winter:

    Attachment 7944

    Best of luck heading into winter, fellow northern hemisphere beeks. See you next year!
    Last edited by Barry; 10-21-2013 at 01:07 PM.

  4. #84
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Montgomery Twp, PA
    Posts
    161

    Default Re: young newbee

    Thank you for all the updates! I love reading about what your daughter is learning!! This is my first year as well, and have been involving my young boys (5 & 2) as much as possible. The five year old took some comb to school for show and tell, along with a replica bee toy.
    Last edited by Barry; 10-21-2013 at 01:07 PM.

  5. #85
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Central BC, Canada
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: young newbee

    Second year update:

    It overwintered with just three boxes - two of honey and one empty one, which we thought might work as a cold sink (like we have in the greenhouse). We are wondering if a black painted Warre box, nadired in fall and removed in the spring, would work as a more efficient heat sink during the day/cold sink at night? In April, we were sure we had lost them, but then the population exploded the first week of May. Just in time for the willow catkins opening on May 8. And they were off.

    They survived and are thriving. We didn't treat last fall, or feed this spring. Yesterday, we had to both nadir again and super, so there are now six boxes on this hive. We are excited to see if we get lovely comb honey from the supered box! My husband is having to help with moving things around at this point, because it's getting pretty heavy. I think we will need to both harvest and nadir at least two more boxes in short order. They are building fast.

    Daughter has set up a bait hive nearby with two boxes and a frame of comb she froze last fall. We couldn't find lemongrass oil locally, so we just hung a lemon grass stem near the entrance. We're taking a few short holidays this summer - the bait hive is just a small insurance policy.

    She had fun over winter, making candles, lip balm... and the sacred HONEY STICKS. The heating element on the impulse sealer burned out after a few hundred sticks. She earned enough selling them to buy another one, but we don't know what to get (suggestions?). She found out that honey sticks are essentially lost leader products, but that lip balm has a nice profit margin. She also found out that she hates making candles with a mould. We are going to try mason jar and dipped candles after the next harvest. Creamed honey is also on the agenda, as is honey rock candy.

    She signed on for another self-directed 4H Beekeeping Project. Right now we are building a model Warre hive from cereal boxes. She's going to take that to fair, along with an actual Warre box, honey, all her value-added apiary products (and maybe comb honey?!). An observation hive is still on the distant horizon. Someday.

    She wants to build a top bar hive this fall to put out at a friend's farm. She is fascinated by the idea of running a hive with two queens - and a queen excluder in the middle. I know nothing about this, so it will be our next area of research. Onward ho.

  6. #86
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,849

    Default Re: young newbee

    Wow sounds excellent.

    What is your bee breed, if you know? Apologies if that's already been mentioned but don't want to read the entire thread again looking for it.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  7. #87
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,891

    Default Re: young newbee

    > The heating element on the impulse sealer burned out after a few hundred sticks. She earned enough selling them to buy another one, but we don't know what to get (suggestions?).

    I haven't used a sealer for honey sticks, but a few years ago I occasionally repaired a couple at work. Some sealers have easily replaceable heater strips - and in some cases are sold with replacement/extra heaters as part of the original purchase.

    I'm not recommending any particular seller here, just illustrating the concept:

    http://www.amazon.com/Impulse-Sealer.../dp/B000UVMKO8
    Note the replacement heaters included above.


    Replacement heaters as a separate purchase:

    http://www.amazon.com/Impulse-Sealer...re+replacement
    ultracrepidarian >> noting or pertaining to a person who criticizes, judges, or gives advice outside of his expertise

  8. #88
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Castle Rock, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    269

    Default Re: young newbee

    Is it just me, or...

    Virtually every post, "last edited by Barry" in a matter of seconds (minutes) ( faster than I can read, much less comprehend)

    Adios, muchachos!!!
    After 35 years, I've come to realize that the bees can fix most of my mistakes.

  9. #89
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Greater Hartford area, CT
    Posts
    236

    Default Re: young newbee

    Your project sounds amazing!!! It's wonderful that your daughter wants to do this and that you are so supportive of her. Beekeeping needs lots of young, fresh blood if the bees are going to survive!

    I hear your concerns about portability and non-intervention, and I don't want to dissuade you from a Warre if you have your heart set on that (personally, I plan to build some myself this year). However, since this is a 4H project, I thought I'd bring up a key point about Warre's design and methodology. According to him, the People's Hive should be inspected only twice a year -- in spring and in the fall. However, I think that if you're a new beekeeper, you don't really get to learn much about bees this way. Even if you have observation windows, you get a very limited view of what's going on inside the hive (and not even a spectacular view since the bees usually gunk up the window).

    The best way to learn about bees is to actually watch them up close. If you have a TBH or Lang, you will need to do more frequent inspections, but you'll get to see so much more -- eggs, larvae, bees emerging from their cells, the queen laying eggs, bees chewing down wood... all kinds of neat stuff happens in a hive. However, you won't be able to observe them with binoculars or even through a window that displays just the edge of the comb.

    To be honest, I'm not very familiar with the goals of 4H other than raising livestock, but if you actually want to learn about bees and see the cool things they do, then a different hive might be better for that than a Lang. If honey is the goal, then a Warre is fine.

    One other thing, Al Avitable (co-author of The Beekeeper's Handbook and Emeritus Professor of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UCONN) is a member of my local beekeeping club. We were chit chatting about Warres at the last meeting and he recommended 5 years of beekeeping experience before getting one because they were just more difficult to keep. I think part of the issue is that beeks don't get into the hive enough to know what is normal and abnormal behavior. So if something is wrong, they don't see it.

    Again, I don't want to dissuade you if you really want a Warre. However, I would suggest inspecting it more frequently than you originally intended. Or consider a KTBH or HTBH, which are bulky, but you only have to transport them once (and can be mostly assembled on the spot). Also, you don't actually need to open up the brood nest during inspections for a KTBH/HTBH, so even though they require frequent inspections, they are still a low-interference type of hive. Also, once installed, a horizontal hive is much lighter than dealing with full Warre boxes because you are only dealing with 5-8 lbs at a time. I have a KTBH, and my 12-yr old son is able to do all the inspection tasks by himself (under my supervision, of course). Even my 8-year old is able to handle bars of comb easily. As a beek and a mom, it's an amazing feeling when my boys do an inspection with me and express excitement and awe over what they see.

    In any case, good luck with your project! I hope you keep us updated on your progress!

  10. #90
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Central BC, Canada
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: young newbee

    Oldtimer, they are carniolans (I had to ask the person who gifted them to us). They re-queened themselves sometime early last year, as we found two supersedure cups in the top box towards the end of the season.

    Graham, Thank You! That is the very sealer we bought, but I didn't see the repair kit as a separate item. Totally affordable, and works reasonably well. Now, if we can just be a bit tidier about it...

    Colobee, Barry was very helpful in helping me remove 'identifiers' from this thread. It took patience on his part - and I thank him very much. It was brought to my attention that I shared too much info in describing this project.

    fruitveggirl, YES! We hope to add more hive types in coming years. We selected the Warre because of size, but also because hive manipulations are minimized. She (and I) preferred to gain confidence by observing from a safer measure the first year Already, we are wishing we could just start lifting frames and poking around. Baby steps.
    Last edited by valerieanne; 06-28-2014 at 10:50 PM.

  11. #91
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Location
    Castle Rock, Colorado, USA
    Posts
    269

    Default Re: young newbee

    'Apologies.

    Just another bout of paranoid/manic/depressive/obsessive/compulsive (typical beekeeper ).

    Good luck. You are in good hands here.
    After 35 years, I've come to realize that the bees can fix most of my mistakes.

  12. #92
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Central BC, Canada
    Posts
    26

    Default Re: young newbee

    We were too late with nadiring/supering. They swarmed this morning. Skipped the bait hive and clustered under the eaves of an outbuilding. We moved the bait hive directly under them, as they are out of reach of even our tallest ladder.

    The bulk of the population seems to have stayed with the original hive? We removed the (empty) supered box from the original hive (it is now at five boxes - three full, one 3/4 full, one empty) and took one frame of mixed honey and brood (sans bees) to place in the bait box as extra incentive. Maybe the old comb from last year wasn't enticing enough. The scout bees are all over the bait box now... fingers crossed.

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