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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    16

    Default 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Hello All,

    Last year was my first year in Honey Bees. This year im thinking of jumping in with 50 hives this year. The hives will cost me $150/hive
    What other things are gonna cost me money, I'd like to make a realistic budget plan prior to buying the 50.

    Obviously Boxes and frames
    Sugar and feeding pails-spring and fall
    Pollen patties
    Terramycin for AFB
    Fumagilin for Nosema
    Apivar for Varroa
    Barrels to fill( will recover deposit once shipped to local Co-op)
    Shipping costs/fuel
    Extractor ( I own a new 4 frame extractor but look to share with a local friend this year, hope to raise enough cash this year to purchase one next year)

    What am I missing? I appreciate your knowledge and help.
    Thanks, Jason

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Oak Harbor, WA
    Posts
    303

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    The Bees? (or are they included with the hives?)

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    LOL, good pooint rniles, but yes the bees are included in the price with a queen.
    The boxes are singles.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Litchfield, CT, USA
    Posts
    430

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Are you doing this full time? Part time might be a bit much for 1 person. Your call.

    If you hired help that would add to cost and all that might go along with that.

    Are you going to raise your own queens once you are up and running? If not you may need to consider a cost for queen replacement.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Sacramento, CA, USA
    Posts
    2,764

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Frames, boxes, and foundation if you're using that are the main concerns. You will probably want some spare tops and bottom boards just in case something happens as well. I would also look into more extracting costs. You will need buckets, strainers, clean up supplies, and something to hold all your frames and wax cappings etc... Good luck with a 4 frame extractor too, I would seriously look into something bigger.

    What's your set up going to be? You have a permanent yard for them and won't need to move them? I don't see anything about a truck or trailer unless you already have one or aren't planning to move them much or in big groups. I would put a budget aside for queen/package purchases as well and 10-20 nuc boxes to keep your numbers up.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Monroe County, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    171

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    I agree with JRG13. If you are planning 50 hives and have a 4-frame extractor, you're never going to finish. You won't have to worry about it so much this year if you are just starting these hives, but you may want to consider at least an 18-frame extractor with motor. That will run you about USD$1000. If you get at least 2 full supers of 8 frames per hive....that's 800 frames. Whew! You'll definitely need help with that.

    I haven't experienced, but have read about your winters up there in the Great White North. I would budget for a 40-70% loss. Plan for the worst...hope for the best.
    Last edited by MaydayMalone; 02-27-2013 at 12:04 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Shelbyville,Indiana,USA
    Posts
    166

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    the budget also depends on if you plan on buying everything or building what you can yourself.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Jacksonville, Florida
    Posts
    1,637

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    I'm with the other guys, you are going to need invest in some extracting equipment. If you are planning on going that big at one time you may want to get a little more or bigger extractor than you think you need. If most of your hives make it through winter you could easily have 75-100 hives the next year. So buy extracting equipment that will serve you for several years before you have to upgrade is a good idea. Your probably gonna want a clarifier, and pump to go along with the new extractor too. And eventually an uncapper and wax spinner.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Very good insight, thanks all

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
    Posts
    1,308

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    I do not see any mention of your time. It is the greatest asset you have, so you have to put the greatest value on it. Unlike money you cannot borrow it or buy it (unlike a movie you may have seen). The bean counters refer to it as opportunity costs.

    I see no mention for a truck or trailer. With 50 hives , it can be done with a car and trailer. You make no mention of bee wraps. 4-5 years ago they were $80 for a 4 pack. You probably need a minimum of 3 boxes per hive ($35 or so with frames asesembled and dipped, fom Lewis Enterprises) Excluder if you run them as singles.

    Weed eater, elcetric fencers to keep the bears out (maybe /maybe not)

    $150/single is very reasonnable dpending though on wether you get them may15 at say7-9 frames per box ordo you get them july 1 at that price and strength? Makes a huge difference.

    Just on boxes and bees, budget $300 per hive.
    You will need at least another $100/ hive of inputs, labour excluded
    Then yo sell your honey and hopefully the cheque is timely and is good.

    All the best in your endeavour.

    Jean-Marc

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    longton, kansas USA
    Posts
    596

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    why soo big soo fast ?
    i get the sense we are alot alike. last year was my first full year with a couple hives and i fell in love with them over the of season this last year. and not to mention the thought of the possible career in beekeeping full time. its very romantic....so i obsessed about it. saved my nickels and dedicated myself to investing in it. but, im lucky to have bought out a 3rd generation beekeepers last hives and other equipment to get me started. we also became good friends. the most important thing he has tought me is to keep my foot on the break pedal. remember that bees are an animal.u are dealing with science,biology and tons of other things you must LEARN and you will fail at. he also tought me the only way to be successful at it is to do as much as possible in house. any of the career beekeepers you will learn from have woodshops. building areas and equipment. because you will go through soooo much inventory its not even explainable! boxes,frames,wax,queen rearing station,tools,processing equipment....ahhhhh its nuts man ! soo he slowed me down. this year we are all in with beekeeping but not the way you may think. we ordered 10 nucs for the season which will give us 12 solid hives for the year. we will split accordingly and work them kind of hard for a first year but not exhaust them. hopefully going into winter with around 36-40 hives. but, 12 this year is not un workable as still new beeks (wife and I). very importantly we are renovating our 2 car garage into a solid wood shop and honey house. complete with some great used equipment. radial arm saw,table saw,air guns/stapler, and clamps etc. i think it is very important to take steps man. ive also learned that by owning a very popular music studio/venue outside of L.A. for quite a few years. the moment i got ever zealous and got ahead of myself it spun downward. and the economy helped too hahaha. i dont mean to write a book but im sure any successful beek here o beesource would have my back on my points. make sure you are building a well rounded and full circle business that you can manage without it controlling you. and most of all...for gods sake dont jump soo big and nd up hating it ! we do this because we choose to. why do we choose to ? because we love it. when the business crashed my wife and i threw everything to the wind,walked away and moved to the midwest and are revitalizing an old far. we have no idea what we are doing and are broke 90% of the time but we wouldnt have it any other way at this point in our lives. heck...i have alot of the recording equipment i kept from liquidation...on ebay rt now as we speak ! http://myworld.ebay.com/tommysgoods i kept that equipment with plans to start a nice little studio i could make some money at and do it on our own terms. but after living with the bees...i cant think of anything else i would rather grow old doing....than helping produce on of the worlds and gods finest and overlooked miracles. HONEY !

    sorry for being long winded... but i felt my story was necessary at this time on your goals.

    Blessings,

    Tommy
    Elk River Honey Farm

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,840

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Quote Originally Posted by MaydayMalone View Post
    read about your winters up there in the Great White North. I would budget for a 40-70% loss. Plan for the worst...hope for the best.
    hmmmmm
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2005
    Location
    FRASER VALLEY, BRITISH COLUMBIA
    Posts
    1,308

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Yup with that kind of loss, best to plan another career. Anybody northor south that has a 40% loss can maybe swallow it one time and hopefullu be back to where they were 2 or 3 years later. 2 years in a row and you are in big trouble. A third yea year like that and you are probably finished.

    Jean-Marc

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Ian, 10-20% sound more reasonable here in MB?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,840

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    ya, I love the 10% winters. My high water mark was 35%
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Green,Wisconsin,USA
    Posts
    107

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Gee, not to rain on your parade or anything...But in one year you really haven't experienced a fraction of what can and will go wrong. You're about to shell out a ton of cash without really scratching the surface of the beekeeping experience. I'd suggest you grow gradually before you get yourself into a massive fire sale situation.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    longton, kansas USA
    Posts
    596

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Quote Originally Posted by smith View Post
    Gee, not to rain on your parade or anything...But in one year you really haven't experienced a fraction of what can and will go wrong. You're about to shell out a ton of cash without really scratching the surface of the beekeeping experience. I'd suggest you grow gradually before you get yourself into a massive fire sale situation.
    by george i think smith just hit the nail on the head !!!!!!!!!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
    Posts
    16

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    Thanks Tommy, smith I hear ya. Will have to re consider my numbers. I understand it aint all roses!
    Thanks everyone, much appreciated.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Oshawa, Ontario
    Posts
    200

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    You might want to wtch the attached thread.
    Using his methods, you could start with a few nucs and build your herd over time, gaining experience along the way.


    http://vimeo.com/23178333

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,840

    Default Re: 2013 Bee Budget.......can I have your input please

    common bit of advice I give starting out beekeepers around here is to buy bees to start, then build your expansion.

    the easy part is the bees, the hard part is everything else,
    first off you need at least 3 drawn supers per hive, $30-$45/ super , that is expensive.

    build your bees by making nucs, learn how to make a double nuc hive and pull honey from them. You will be able to build your nucs, and pay for all your costs of building them with the honey they will produce you. Your stock expansion will cost you nothing but time. The you can focus your attention on building your equipment base
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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