44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).
I live in the middle of a city, and in a relatively financially challenged part of the city. (The advantage is that I live on 3 acres near 25 acres of woods in the middle of town at an affordable cost.) The only chemical sprayed in any quantity is 2-4d, which the City itself sprays for weed control on a very large right-of-way in a flood plain by my house. I doubt there are any neonics sprayed at all in the area where my bees fly.
The big crashes Roland predicts never happen.
I predicted that in 20 years, due to the high cost of sterilization equipment, only commercial beekeepers will be treatment free.
Seeing as how 20 years has not passed, and I made no claims on the speed of the bees demise(it could be slow), exactly how is my claim not fulfilled?
Mike, if you are unsure of the well being of your bees being next to a crop that you know will be sprayed why wouldn't you move them to a safe place?
Well, all those boxes that had honey are now on the hives in my home yard. So those of you that are concerned about disease will get to watch my entire operation crash before my eyes and I won't have a clue!
Now no hive has fewer than 4 boxes on it which is something I've been wanting to do for a long time. I have enough to get them up to five (seven mediums) but didn't want to add too many boxes at once.
So those are the main reasons I don't want to move them.
Beekeeping can be tough, though, due to our dry climate. We have two local sayings which help paint a picture of agricultural life in Colorado: 1) whiskey is for drinking, water is for fighting; and, 2) in Colorado, water flows uphill to money.
Regarding beekeeping, in my limited experience, spring typically brings a strong flow, followed by a long summer dearth with a small and sometimes non-existent fall flow. Hives that build up fast in late winter and early spring to take strong advantage of the spring flow tend to do best. Also, positioning hives within foraging range of irrigated lands to offset the dry summer can be helpful, but irrigated land in Colorado is not necessarily easy to find.
Last edited by shinbone; 02-25-2014 at 10:28 AM.
(3rd year, 12 hives, Zone 5b, 5400 ft, 15.8" annual rainfall)
I do believe in extra cold winters and that cold can kill bees not adapted for it.