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  1. #161
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,199

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    I think Guy should start another Thread. This one is worn out. Titled "I thought I would like to be a Commercial Beekeeper".
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  2. #162
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Bloomington In
    Posts
    788

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Guy, bailed on post 99.

  3. #163
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,199

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    All dreamed out?
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  4. #164
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Herrick, SD USA
    Posts
    4,395

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    D
    Quote Originally Posted by WLC View Post
    Jim:

    Remember the 'blue sky' fella?

    .
    "Blue Sky fella" is a commercial beekeeper by anyone's definition. Certainly one of the most successful ones that I know.
    "People will generally accept facts as truth only if the facts agree with what they already believe."- Andy Rooney

  5. #165
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    New York City, NY
    Posts
    4,317

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    I was left with the impression that he didn't have alot of physical assets.

  6. #166
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Athens, WI, USA
    Posts
    33

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    I think Guy should start another Thread. This one is worn out. Titled "I thought I would like to be a Commercial Beekeeper".
    lol thats bout right

  7. #167
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Jasper, Texas, USA
    Posts
    136

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Hello Guy. Hope you're still reading this thread.

    The lowest investment, quickest return on investment, and most reliable market is Queens and queen cells. A few hundred hives can generate a lot of income. Queens are also a way to keep bees and not be mobile.

    Spending a month or 2 over the next 2 springs with a experienced beekeeper should be enough to give you what you need know....at least enough to get started. That's pretty low investment of time also.

    Queens are all about you and your work. Not how much you own.
    Good luck

    ryan

  8. #168
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    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    I heard once about how Randy Oliver sold half of his combs every year by selling half of his hives. Maybe as nucs, I forget. This was on 400 hives. He then split the remainder and was bck to his 400 hives. Seemed like a good idea to me.

    Yes Ryan. Seems like a good idea to me.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  9. #169
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Randolph, NC, USA
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Quote Originally Posted by Markt View Post
    Going from a hobbyist to a sideliner first you'll learn how to keep bees (Which hopefully you already know) and then to break into being a sideliner you'll have to learn to keep bees efficiently. .....

    ..... I'd try some number between 50 and 100 next year if I were you, that'll give you a bit of an idea what I'm talking about. If it works out, double again and try that. I should mention you won't make much honey off of those if you turn 15-20 nucs and a few hives into 50-100 (Like maybe a barrel) but it can be done, you'll even get to buy your very own tote of sugar out of the deal. Just my two cents, best of luck
    I figured I would try and go with around 25-40 hives next year. Maybe only 25, and focus on splitting and queens. I have been reading some books that make me think that this is the best option for me at this moment. I'm just figuring out the logistics at the moment, and going to spend the winter reading, reading, reading. Thanks!

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Personally I think he is looking at it the wrong way. He should figure out what he wants from life and then see if beekeeping can help make it true.
    That is pretty much what I am doing, I have a general idea what I want, and I'm trying to see what the the work thats being cut out for me will look like. But wise statement regardless.

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Navy benefits? I wouldn't want to try to start anything in his shoes. But I guess he has to do something. I wish him all the luck and hard knocks I had. Education is expensive and we all pay for it one way or another.
    Navy benefits leave me covering the bills, and paying for my formal schooling, with a bit extra. Just quit a job because it was interfering with my school, and childcare (loooong story) and I make more going to school so why not do that instead of being stuck at minimum wage and 15 hours a week? It was costing me more in childcare and gas alone than I was making. Now I can focus on school and use my other incomes to build up, also the free time I will have to research this particular venture and literally build hives and such.

    Quote Originally Posted by hpm08161947 View Post
    He lives right in the middle (1 hour drive either way) between two of NC's most successful commercial beekeepers.... both very approachable guys. This is one of his big assets... if he will use it.
    I am looking into it. It was a great suggestion, I didn't mean to seem like I have been blowing it off. I kinda just started skimming once all the hostilities broke out.

    Quote Originally Posted by snl View Post
    The trick in life is finding out what you LOVE to do THEN figuring out a way to make money doing it!
    +1. Do what you love, and the money will come. Has worked for me so far, just seems to be getting a bit harder each time as what I want become more expensive

    Quote Originally Posted by hpm08161947 View Post
    The biggest problem he seems to have is that he is "Immobile". Mobility would seem to be a number one requirement for a Commercial Beekeeper. He is 25 and already tied down.... alas.
    True, true. I give you that. Part of the reason I cannot take the ND job, or I would. I am hoping in 16 years (or less, depending on how the relationship with the mother stabilizes) will open more doors, and hope to be set up by then, and that's what I'm looking into now, by reading, talking to people, and starting controversial threads, apparently.

    Quote Originally Posted by ryan View Post
    Hello Guy. Hope you're still reading this thread.

    The lowest investment, quickest return on investment, and most reliable market is Queens and queen cells. A few hundred hives can generate a lot of income. Queens are also a way to keep bees and not be mobile.

    Spending a month or 2 over the next 2 springs with a experienced beekeeper should be enough to give you what you need know....at least enough to get started. That's pretty low investment of time also.

    Queens are all about you and your work. Not how much you own.
    Good luck

    ryan
    I have been leaning towards that for the last few weeks, and since my books came in the mail, and really cleared out some of the fuzzy areas for me, I intend to focus on that in the coming spring, and only building my own apiary with splits and stuff, developing a positive relationship with the inspector, learning from her, and learning from others as well.

  10. #170
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Midland OR. United States
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    I'm getting on here late and don't have time to reed all the post so some of this could have been covered. Do to the topic I wanted to chime in about my last two day's of trying to become a sideliner. I left my house Wednesday morning for work at 4 am. I got home from work at 3:30 pm. I then drove four more hours to load bees by hand. At 12:30 am I was strapping my load. At 3:30 am I was calling my wife to bring me some tools to work on my alternator and give me a jump start. At 7:30 am I was back on the road still three hours from my destination. At 12:30 pm I had my load empty and started pulling honey suppers. I did get an hour of sleep waiting on my wife though. My advise after this is, if you can't put in a couple of day's like these once in awhile you should look for a different profession as bee keeping doesn't wait until tomorrow.

  11. #171
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Plymouth County, MA, USA
    Posts
    123

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Guy, what are the books you got for queen rearing, if you don't mind my asking? My county has a queen rearing initiative and I think it's a lot of fun. I have it in my head that raising my own queens (just to replace my own over the years) will be one of the more rewarding parts of beekeeping, but I'd love to know more about it.

  12. #172
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Randolph, NC, USA
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Quote Originally Posted by hedges View Post
    Guy, what are the books you got for queen rearing, if you don't mind my asking? My county has a queen rearing initiative .... one of the more rewarding parts of beekeeping, but I'd love to know more about it.
    Of course I don't mind, it also gives others the chance to give their opinion on the book and its applicability and credibility.

    G.M. Doolittle's "Scientific Queen Rearing", It was written in the mid-1800s or near, and is written in a tone like most books written in the victorian era. I also received Increase Essentials, but John Connor Lawrence. I only had a chance to skim two chapters, but I really like it so far. I think it will teach me quite a bit to build off. I also received "bee sex essentials" by Mr. Lawrence as well, but haven't cracked it much, I only showed a few pictures to my son who grabbed it and wanted to point out "bees daddy!" I like that it has glossy pages and colored (thought dated) photographs. To be honest, I kinda like the dated "style" photos. Rustic feel.

    My club mentioned a queen initiative, but I think I was the only one interested in it at the time, everyone thought it was a good idea, but haven't talked any more about doing something with the idea. We will get around to it, I hope to become involved.

  13. #173
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
    Posts
    3,594

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    "Connor" is Larry's last name... Hopefully you will hear him speak about bees someday.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  14. #174
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Randolph, NC, USA
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Quote Originally Posted by BeeCurious View Post
    "Connor" is Larry's last name... Hopefully you will hear him speak about bees someday.
    :facepalm:

    That would be nice, I like his style of writing. You know when you are reading a run down of something, and no matter how many times you've read or heard about it it doesn't seem to stick quite like you would like? His book(s) seem to fix that problem with me.

  15. #175
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    New York City, NY
    Posts
    4,317

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Guy:

    Get your bankroll together, start building already.

    I think that you can do it.

  16. #176
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Randolph, NC, USA
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Quote Originally Posted by WLC View Post
    Guy:

    Get your bankroll together, start building already.

    I think that you can do it.
    Thanks man!

    Right now, I'm reading up as the summer semester winds down, figuring out what I have, what I need, and then developing a plan to get what I need. Looks like I need to learn some woodworking skills lol

  17. #177
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,199

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Accounting skills are more important than woodworking skills, imo. Take a Small Business Class or two. So you'll know what to do when you build your business.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  18. #178
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    New York City, NY
    Posts
    4,317

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    If you haven't already done so, don't forget to apply for credit cards while you're still in school.

    Also, if you haven't already applied for a student loan, and you still have a few more years left for your degree, it might be a way to bootstrap your operation.
    Last edited by WLC; 07-14-2013 at 03:10 PM.

  19. #179
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Randolph, NC, USA
    Posts
    92

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Accounting skills are more important than woodworking skills, imo. Take a Small Business Class or two. So you'll know what to do when you build your business.
    I've taken a few basic ones here and there, more than I care to. I know it is a very important aspect, and it is something I will have to get good at. Thanks.

    Quote Originally Posted by WLC View Post
    If you haven't already done so, don't forget to apply for credit cards while you're still in school.

    Also, if you haven't already applied for a student loan, and you still have a few more years left for your degree, it might be a way to bootstrap your operation.
    This sounds good in theory, but 2013 will be marked as the year I became 100% debt free. My school is paid for, I get scholarships that more than cover tuition, on top of tuition being paid for from the GI bill. So these are part of where the financing is coming from to fund this adventure. I would rather not get right back into the debt loop. If, in a few years, this is doing well, I may look into getting loans and such, but I would really rather not unless necessary. I would rather live meagerly and own everything I own, instead of basically renting it from the bank.

    I have talked to a local carpenter, and we are going in on some wood. Well, I'm going to buy some wood, and he is going to make me however many hives and nuc boxes I need for next year as soon as I decide what wood to use. I also have a very nice beek going to use me for the remainder of the summer so I can learn to graft and raise queens, hands on. So hopefully by next spring I can at least supply myself with queens, or perhaps the following year depending on how well I take it up i suppose. I figured, I can earn good income, with the same investment, if I focus on this aspect too, as it will also be a needed skill throughout my involvement in the hobby.

    Now while I'm learning this, I'm trying to learn how many hives it would take to be capable of producing twenty (at least) mated queens a week. Doubt next year will be the year this happens for me, but we will see. He even offered some of his good queens for me so I'll have good stock to work with.

  20. #180
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,199

    Default Re: I would like to be a commercial beek

    Credit cards to maintain your credit rating.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

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