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Thread: certified bees

  1. #1
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    Jun 2013
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    Amherst Virginia USA
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    Default certified bees

    I started with a nuc in May purchased from an man about an hour away ay the cost of $130...his bees are inspected by some inspection office that inspects bees (ok Im clueless as to who or why this is done.
    I have a guy that's 15 minutes away from me that sells nucs for $90...they are not inspected and he gets swarms from where ever and everywhere.
    Is it worth the extra money and drive for the "inspected" bees?
    Thanks
    Wendy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
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    Cumberland Va.
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    671

    Default Re: certified bees

    If you are pleased with the product and they are producing, Why change. Unless you are going to try and start 50 hives, then the expense may come into play. I figure if you are just keeping a few hives, by the time you figure what you have invested in woodenware, whats the extra 40 for a proven product, Just my opinion......G

  3. #3
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Wendy.......try one of his nucs.....
    http://OxaVap.com
    Your source for Oxalic Acid Vaporizers

  4. #4
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    Jun 2013
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    Amherst Virginia USA
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    Default Re: certified bees

    I am leaning toward buying again from the first man I purchased for because I am satisfied and Im concerned about getting Africanized bees with the local guy getting swarms from anywhere. The bees I have are supposed to be mite resistant and are breed by the man I buy them from.I was just curious what the certification means and is it important?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Usually "certified bees" are recently inspected by a State inspector for disease(s). In your location Africanized bees are not an issue. Is certification important? Yes & no. It just means his hives were recently inspected and found disease free. It does not mean that the nuc he is selling you is State inspected and disease free. Myself.....I'd buy the $90 nuc. You'll prob need that guy again for advice and having bought from him....
    http://OxaVap.com
    Your source for Oxalic Acid Vaporizers

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
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    Fort Walton Beach, Florida
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    Default Re: certified bees

    My best hive this spring came from a local nuc that cost me 90 bucks.

    I paid a lot more for other nucs and packages that haven't done as well.

    When hives are inspected, as far as I know, all they're checking for is disease and pests, not productivity. I might ask the "certified" guy what makes his bees better than uncertified.

    There are some treatment free beekeepers who attribute their success to the acquisition of swarms. The cheaper nuc might turn out to be the better nuc. The genetics of those feral bees might be better suited to your area and conditions.

    But I'm a beginner, so I could be completely wrong.

  7. #7
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    Jun 2012
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    Bloomfield,KY
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    Default Re: certified bees

    wengeasley, there is no reason to be concerned about Africanized bees in your area, they haven't made it that far north. The certification insures that you're not buying diseased hives. If you know what to look for as far as diseases are concerned then the bees from the guy catching swarms should be fine. It's sort of like the difference between a registered dog and one that isn't. Just because the bees aren't "pedigreed", it doesn't mean they aren't any good. Some of my best producing hives are from swarms and cutouts. Although I might add we have a guy in our area that catches swarms then sells those swarms in nucs, by doing this he can't really tell you whether they are hygienic or if they are from good honey producing stock. Personally I would try a nuc from him but that is just my opinion. You at least know that the bees he has did well enough to produce a swarm. Also if your laws are the same as KY to sell bees you are required to be inspected.
    Last edited by Sharpbees; 07-14-2013 at 07:33 PM.
    "Of all God's creatures, only the honeybee improves its environment and preys on no other species."--Haydon Brown

  8. #8
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    Default Re: certified bees

    One is following the law, http://www.vdacs.virginia.gov/plant&pest/apiary.shtml
    "The Virginia Bee Law regulates the movement of honey bees into the state, the sale of bees, queens, used bee equipment; and provides a means for dispatching bee disease reservoirs.

    Virginia utilizes a Uniform Inspection Certificate approved by the Apiary Inspectors of America for interstate movement of colonies.

    Virginia also participates in the Mid-Atlantic States Agreement which specifies inspection requirements for bee diseases and pests and allows for partial (random) inspection of apiaries that meet certain disease-free criteria."
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  9. #9
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    May 2012
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    Rowan County NC
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    Default Re: certified bees

    The only difference in NC is the law. You are supposed to be "state inspected" before being allowed to sell bees.
    "You have to put down the ducky if you wanna play the Saxophone!" Mr .Hoot

  10. #10
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Whether this is relavent or not, when Apiary Inspectors "certify" the Health of a beekeepers beehives or nucs they don't look at all of them. They can't, there isn't enough time and aren't enough Inspectors. They only inspect a percentage of the hives, 10% here in NY.

    Just thought you might like to know.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  11. #11
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Another aspect to consider is if either of the suppliers is available for support - A higher price may mean that the supplier knows what to expect from new beekeepers and is prepared to help them as much as he can. I was talking with a commercial beekeeper yesterday who plans to offer nucs next spring for $100 - $25 less than most other suppliers. The nuc provider we used this year delivered nucs with Apivar strips installed and TeraPro. The provider was doing his part to make sure that new beekeepers wouldn't have problems with the nucs. So not so good for those wanting to go with soft or no treatments, but otherwise very much oriented to the new beekeeper. An extra $25 worth of medication and advice? Maybe you won't need that next year.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Wendy, if you are new to this I would go with the cheapest bees you can get. Nothing is guaranteed no matter how much you pay for bees.
    I am also wondering why you aren't splitting the bees you have to make increases.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  13. #13
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Nothing is gauranteed? Both suppliers should be willing to stand behind their product just like any other supplier or seller of anything should. It's their obligation to make good any nuc they sell, w/in reason of course.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  14. #14
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    Default Re: certified bees

    The matter of support is a good thing to consider, but it might not have much to do with price. I got my first nuc from a guy in my local club, and he was very supportive, despite the good price. He took my wife and me around his yard, opened several of his hives to give us an idea of what that was like, and told me that if I was unhappy with the nuc, I could have my money back. He was always available for help. He's retired and only does this as a hobby, though he has about 20 hives. He was also completely upfront, and told me that no colonies here in FL are going to be free of small hive beetles and mites, which I'm sure is true. But the queen has been a brood-making monster and although I have seen one beetle, the hive has grown so ferociously that I haven't had any problems. I've made two splits from that hive, which I started in late March-- one that is starting to boom itself, and one for a BeeWeaver queen I ordered. I've taken several frames of great honey from that hive too.

    Anyway, I guess my point is that a friendly local person might be a better bet for support than a bigger supplier out of town.

  15. #15
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    Jun 2013
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    Amherst Virginia USA
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Acebird...I posted on another thread about doing a split..which I feel I should wait till spring but I plan on 4 hives which puts me buying 2 nucs next spring. I prefer a gentle better bee but I know that's hard to say unless I have some from each guy. Both have been great about support...even the local one which I have not purchased from at this point. He even can to my house and let me come to his to look at his bees...however he seems so flighty himself Im not sure Im comfortable doing all my business with him only.I don't have bees just for the honey (or money) my first priority is the environment and honey I get will be a bonus. I may end up with nucs from both just to see ...

  16. #16
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Quote Originally Posted by wengeasley View Post
    Acebird...I posted on another thread about doing a split..which I feel I should wait till spring but I plan on 4 hives which puts me buying 2 nucs next spring.
    I saw it after I made the post. Waiting until spring is a good idea even for buying a nuc.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  17. #17
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Whether this is relavent or not, when Apiary Inspectors "certify" the Health of a beekeepers beehives or nucs they don't look at all of them. They can't, there isn't enough time and aren't enough Inspectors. They only inspect a percentage of the hives, 10% here in NY.

    Just thought you might like to know.
    Depends on where your at.... Here in IL EVERY nuc is inspected before its moved. and a certificate is mailed to the customer and the beekeeper.....

  18. #18
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    Default Re: certified bees

    You must either have a lot of Inspectors and a big Budget or not very many nucs sold or quite a few sold uninspected. Good for you if it actually happens that way.
    Mark Berninghausen "That which works, persists."

  19. #19
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Quote Originally Posted by gmcharlie View Post
    Depends on where your at.... Here in IL EVERY nuc is inspected before its moved. and a certificate is mailed to the customer and the beekeeper.....
    Just out of curiosity can you post what that certification looks like. I got to believe that if every nuc sold was physically inspected by a government employee it would jump the cost of each nuc 25-50 dollars. Everyone who has ever been involved in a quality control (assurance) program knows that you can't inspect quality into a product.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  20. #20
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    Default Re: certified bees

    Heck i have no clue how to post it?? I can't even get pics to load... Just a simple form with the customers and my name and inspection.. its called "permit to move"

    Keep in mind in IL if I had to guess less than 20% are registered... and Nucs are a VERY small portion.....

    Our inspector is a sweetheart.. annoying because she thinks everything looks like foulbrood, but a really nice girl who inspects EVERY hive which is a full days work....... every nuc is easy as I sell less than 50 a year.

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