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  1. #641
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    If you are willing and able to go treatment free then go ahead and do it and tell us how it works out. Brash and bold talk is cheap. Walk the walk, don't just talk the talk. Show us the way.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  2. #642
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    Jan 2003
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    Manitoba Canada
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    I should also add that we do use Dee's honey to feed our bees if/when we feed them (we had a barrel of honey damaged in shipment, and was able to convince the insurance company to let us keep it for bee feed rather than them tossing it into a dumpster)...we also have scraps and such from every barrel...so, not just one batch has been fed to our bees.

    We have never had a case of AFB. The state apiarist knows that we do this, has inspected our bees, and sees no problem...his conclusion is that the honey is "clean"...whatever that means.

    deknow
    its a known fact, that if the operation has AFB problem present in its hives, spores will show up in the extracted product.

    Thats a bold move deknow, why risk your hives? I wouldnt do that regardless whos honey it is,
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  3. #643
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    Jul 2006
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    New Zealand was smarter about antibiotics than the US (they didn't allow them), so there may be some cultural differances at play...but in the US (someone back me up here), 1-2% is fairly normal in a large operation that does treat with antibiotics and does burn infected hives.
    No one here would consider what Dee has as a "problem".

    deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  4. #644
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    dennison MN
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    106

    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    im not trying to fight here. im just saying what he said. keep and open mind. ill let you know in 30 years. he said he does not buy bees he does not buy queens, anymore, and his out fit is a continuous living organism. so that is my model and plan for the future. self sustaining. and bees that live and thrive with no treatments. i believe him. why cant you.

  5. #645
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Who says I don't? I was talking to you. You haven't yet put your money where your mouth is.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  6. #646
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    dennison MN
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    106

    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    you know how farmers cant raise their own seed anymore. well maybe we should feel really lucky we can still raise and select our queens. how scary would it be if monsanto sold us our queens.

  7. #647
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    Manitoba Canada
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post

    Hi, my name is Mark and I have AFB.
    ha ha haha ha

    no, I was referring to talking about someone else's AFB , TABOO! Stray from the topic! Back to the mites!
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  8. #648
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    Jul 2006
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    I think AFB is more endemic than people realize.

    In one study, 77% of colonies without clinical symptoms were found to contain spores.
    http://pub.epsilon.slu.se/1053/1/Avhandling.pdf

    I don't think isolation or eradication is a solution.

    deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  9. #649
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by mnbeekeeper View Post
    you know how farmers cant raise their own seed anymore. well maybe we should feel really lucky we can still raise and select our queens. how scary would it be if monsanto sold us our queens.
    do you know any farmers? by the sounds of it, not
    we keep over 2000 acres worth of seed every year, cleaned from our best crop,
    we cant how ever breed from seed that has been developed as Hybrids, for the many reason we all know about, AND because I signed a paper saying that I would not rip off another business tech,
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  10. #650
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by mnbeekeeper View Post
    im not trying to fight here. im just saying what he said. keep and open mind. ill let you know in 30 years. he said he does not buy bees he does not buy queens, anymore, and his out fit is a continuous living organism. so that is my model and plan for the future. self sustaining. and bees that live and thrive with no treatments. i believe him. why cant you.
    That sounds great! I believe, I believe,
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  11. #651
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    What I have been trying to get at from starting within the center point of this topic was what outside influences on these treatment free operations is allowing these treatment free operation to survive? Not all treatment free operations follow the same management , there are the common threads which tie each operation together, but on their own they do not provide success,

    So Dee manages much differently than Chris, because Dee is stationary and in a desert and Chris is migratory and a pollinator. Looking at each op, what outside factors in their management program influence their results?
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  12. #652
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    Jul 2006
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    If you make a list of priorities, and being "treatment free" is down below all of your other priorities, you will never get to it...no matter what your approach.

    There will always be something to treat for in the short term.

    deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  13. #653
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    ...there are no nearby beekeepers to infest her, and I'd hazard a guess there are almost no feral hives.
    Not true for most (if not all) of her yards. There are migratory commercials in the area, well within flying distance.
    There are plenty of feral hives in the area as well.

    There is no reason at all why she could not wipe her AFB out in 2 years and be done with it.
    ...see above.

    An argument against that is she may want her bees to be immune. But bees have been living in balance with AFB for millennia, and have not overcome it.
    So it is doubtful that in one human lifetime we could expect our bees to evolve resistance. I can hardly think of an easier outfit to clean up than Dees she has every advantage.
    It's worth noting that Dee has the advantages she has because she didn't do what every expert told her she had to do.



    deknow
    Last edited by JohnK and Sheri; 04-01-2013 at 10:32 AM.
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  14. #654
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    Manitoba Canada
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    I currently use nucs as a strategy in my operation to sustain my numbers, nucs exploit an advantage to keeping ahead of the mite cycle, I believe its practice that treatment free are using,.? Except Dee, which is puzzling me. How can an operation sustain or build back heavy losses with walk away splits.
    The difference might be she beekeeps in a desert type environment, which Im not familiar with. About how many times would she take a split off a hive through out the year? For my operation it is no more than one, then into the honey flow. That is why I build up nucs during the spring.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  15. #655
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by deknow View Post
    ...how many posts were in this thread before anyone would even acknowledge that there _were_ treatment free commercial beekeepers. Perhaps it would have helped if I had named some specifically before the 5th post in the thread.
    Open minded indeed.

    deknow
    Perhaps not as open minded as you might wish us to be and not immediately all embracing. But, I for one, am willing to see what others have done and decide for myself what course of action I am willing to take.

    I still maintain that 3 or 4 beekeepers out of thousands does not constitute a critical mass. Especially when definitions of what commercial means have been stretched.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  16. #656
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Especially when definitions of what commercial means have been stretched.
    thinking the same thing,
    like Sherri mentioned a while back, a lot of new guys will jump on board to treatment free without having a management plan in place. Just stopping the treatment is one of the steps, how to get those bees to respond to their environment favorably with the presence of the pests is the rest of the story. I want to hear the rest of the story ! Paul Harvey give us the rest of the story! ( may he RIP )
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  17. #657
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    May 2009
    Location
    Anderson County, Texas
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    1,254

    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    I still maintain that 3 or 4 beekeepers out of thousands does not constitute a critical mass.
    That critical mass that you refer to might also be characterized as following the herd instinct, and not all of us want to be involved in that.

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Especially when definitions of what commercial means have been stretched.
    And if you keep contracting that definition only a few of you will be left therein. I guess that is one way to prove treatment free doesn't work for 'commercial beekeepers'. I am out of here, I have splits to make.

    Danny
    "I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country." Nathan Hale, 1776

  18. #658
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    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    45,368

    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    > At what point do you become a treatment free beekeeper?

    When you stop treating.

    >Do you have to not treat from day one?

    You have to pick when day one occurs, but sooner or later, if you're going to be treatment free, you need to stop treating.

    > I believe Mike Bush used to treat.

    I'm not sure I would characterize it as "used to treat" I got desperate enough when Varroa killed them all and everyone was saying it was impossible to keep them alive without treating for Varroa and I had found NO ONE who said it was possible. So for a few years I tried some things for Varroa until I discovered Dee and regression.

    > At what point after he stopped did he become "treatment free"? As soon as he didn't use treatments.

    I guess that depends on the purpose of using the term. From the point of view of honey, I think it's that there are no chemical inputs that would end up in the honey, but from the point of view of having a stable, balanced, healthy ecosystem in the hive, that may take a few years to stabilize.

    >I dont know what personal information is being asked, being a commercial beekeeping forum, the comments on maintaining a solvent operation is a real thing.

    How about medical information, or speculation on other people's profits and productivity. I understand that profit and productivity are important, but I don't think most people want everyone else to know how much money they do or do not make.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  19. #659
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    Jul 2006
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    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    thinking the same thing,
    like Sherri mentioned a while back, a lot of new guys will jump on board to treatment free without having a management plan in place. Just stopping the treatment is one of the steps, how to get those bees to respond to their environment favorably with the presence of the pests is the rest of the story. I want to hear the rest of the story ! Paul Harvey give us the rest of the story! ( may he RIP )
    I'm guessing that defs for "commercial beekeepers" will follow the "who is driving at a safe speed" rule. Anyone "smaller" than me isn't commercial...anyone bigger than mr is "too big".

    So, what is the unstretched definition of "commercial" so we can be careful not to stretch it?

    I would venture a guess that there are more new 'conventional commercial beekeepers' that fail because of false illusions than there are new "treatment free commercial beekeepers" that even try. Why isn't this a larger concern to this group?

    Mike Palmer's wife works...probably a job that provides health insurance and significant income. Does that disqualify him from the "commercial club"?

    This reminds me a bit of the art world....on the street level, anyone that gets a good gig and is making a good living is a "sellout" to those that don't. I don't think there is anything to be ashamed of for diversifying one's resources....and it's not a "badge of honor" to be so far in debt that every decision needs to be run by the banker.

    In some circles (like sane people) figuring out how to be able to afford to do what one wants to do is considered "smart".

    deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  20. #660
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
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    5,778

    Default Re: Treatment Free Commercial Beekeepers?

    >>I understand that profit and productivity are important, but I don't think most people want everyone else to know how much money they do or do not make.

    Its the crutch of the whole conversation,
    general terms of course
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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