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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Rock Springs, Wyoming
    Posts
    15

    Smile Planning for next year!

    I am new to the beekeeping and hoping to expand from 2 hives to 25 in the Spring. I was able to take one super from one of my hives and a local keeper extracted it for me. I don't plan to buy any equipment for extracting so I will be seeking someone to extract it for me. Does anyone else need this kind of service? If so, how much should I anticipate the cost to be per frame or per shallow super? I was quoted $2.00 per frame by one business.
    Thanks in advance for your responses.
    Katie Williams

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Bedford, Indiana
    Posts
    43

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Have you thought about going foundation-less and doing crush and strain or cutting whole comb or both? It costs you nothing to do the crush and strain method.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    S Hadley, Massachusetts USA
    Posts
    682

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    If you have a county bee club, they often have extractors available to their members.

    The price of $2 a frame might sound affordable but it's $20 a super. So if you have 2 supers per hive and 25 hives....$1000.

    You can buy a extractor for that.
    Last edited by Michael B; 01-03-2014 at 06:13 PM. Reason: Spelling

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,225

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Crush and strain is not a viable option for 25 supers of honey. You will need to rent an extractor this year, and I recommend buy an extractor for next year. Get a bunch of buckets (food grade) as well, you are going to get about 2.5 gallons per shallow super if all goes well, so you are looking at 60 or 70 gallons of honey off 25 hives. This should be in the range of 750 lbs. Probably less to start with until you get them built so they are filling drawn comb, but crush and strain is just not in the picture. You will be drowning in cappings, let alone crushing 250 frames worth of comb and trying to filter it.

    If you are in a good area and have productive bees, you could have twice this much honey at an average of 60 lbs/hive.

    If you are on clover, you could end up with 3000 lbs of honey, and the thought of attempting to do crush and strain with that boggles the mind! Works OK if you don't mind a huge mess and have a hive or two, but dozens? Not.

    Peter

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Rock Springs, Wyoming
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Thanks for your responses.
    Peter,
    We are in Wyoming. We have a lot of alfalfa. Do you find alfalfa to be as productive as clover? They have about 3 cuttings here and cut after blooming.
    Thanks,
    Katie

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Rock Springs, Wyoming
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Thanks Josh for your reply

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Evansville, IN
    Posts
    2,225

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Alfalfa produces large amounts of high sugar nectar, so yes, it's great so long as it blooms long enough. Mention to the farmers that occasionally allowing a field to go to seed late in the year will naturally re-seed it if it's getting thin, as this will save money for the farmer and get you a large honey crop.

    The problem with alfalfa and honey is that it's usually cut just before full bloom on the notion that doing so increases the food value of the alfalfa. Naturally, this deprives the bees of the nectar.

    You will know if you are getting a honey flow off of it though, the supers should fill up fast.

    Peter

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Billerica, MA
    Posts
    298

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Keeping the kitchen sticky-free comes at a price. I saw $1.25 to 1.50/frame when I was looking around. Just ten hives at two supers each is a goodly amount of honey to run through your kitchen.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Charles City, VA
    Posts
    77

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    A member of a bee club here in VA only charges you the wax capings if he is already extracting. His wife uses the wax the other things. Other clubs own an extractor and have extracting weekends where everyone brings everything over and just work till it's all done then everyone helps clean up.

    Try to find a club that has one even if you have to drive a ways to get there esp if you have been quoted $20 per box. A couple of boxes is a bunch of gas money to find one to use for free.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Versailles, France
    Posts
    12

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    I don't want to be pessimistic, but expending from 2 to 25 the second year is unrealistic, most of your colonies will die in winter,
    you'll have to buy ready made populated hive to fullfill your plan.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Rock Springs, Wyoming
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Good point! We in Wyoming and our winters can be pretty rough. I am hoping to piggyback with some other keepers and send them to California for winter polination.
    Thanks for your comments.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Knox, Pa. USA
    Posts
    895

    Default Re: Planning for next year!

    Quote Originally Posted by psfred View Post
    Alfalfa produces large amounts of high sugar nectar, so yes, it's great so long as it blooms long enough. Mention to the farmers that occasionally allowing a field to go to seed late in the year will naturally re-seed it if it's getting thin, as this will save money for the farmer and get you a large honey crop.



    Peter
    You can try telling a farmer that. And Maybe if the guy is young and dumb he will fall for it. However It is false. as any farmer who is worth his salt can tell you Alfalfa is very poor at best when it comes to reseeding itself. In fact broadcasting inoculated seed or even drilling it in does little to improve the stand. You see during the growth process alfalfa produces a chemical that inhibits germination of it own seed. when alfalfa gets too thin to be of value the field mist be sprayed and planted with an alternate crop. In most instances the only alfalfa crops that are of value to honey production are those tended by farmers with poor farming practices, and cut them late, or farmers growing alfalfa for seed production.

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