Mark Berninghausen "To float, upheld, as salt water would hold you, once you dared." Denise Levertov, poet
In NYC, pollen comes first. This year, plenty of clover because of the cool wet summer.
The Beeweavers did well for me.
I've heard very good things about texas bees WLC Do you have them fill a super on the maple early spring from time to time?
ha no maple honey here, I build build build on that early nectar gold
not as long as many on this list
Im self taught, been in it for bout 15 years.
We also ranch a few hundred cattle and crop a few thousand acres of land
ya I manage the bees, but Im not to far away from the rest of the farm as its workload can get extremely overwhelming.
I guess you can consider me a well rounded contributor to the list.
where as your speaking of once per year queen replacements, I speak of one to two year replacements. I dont keep track of my stock but I do replace 50% every year. Anything that hiccups in the spring gets pinched. There is too much riding on our short season. where as my queen would then sit idle for 5 months of the year.
you see what I mean? If you want to see longevity, have them sit motionless in complete darkness in a shed for four to five months of our winter. anything that isnt hardy dies
Winterizing in temp controlled room....yup. How are they bred...Artificially? The growing seasons are about like alasaka, aren' they?
Last edited by Barry; 02-03-2014 at 08:55 AM. Reason: quoting
ha, you have never been to Manitoba in January before, have you...
>>How are they bred...Artificially?<<
are you kidding me?
Are you telling me tlhat no one sells artificially bred queens? I could have sworn seeing bee journal articles about it. Are your lb averages coming out of the q4hs?
Just like finding orders of other queens on the right or wrong day depending on what cranky old woman answers the phone or not. Everything is a go until you mention where you want certain orders shipped, which are blacklisted for postal delivery(not by the post office but by the business not wanting to deal with certain regions where the po customer service is unreliable). I've had the same troubles with certain post offices through the city trying to mail off buckets of honey and having disgruntled knuckleheads hollering at me that I can't bring 5 gallon buckets to into the post office, and trying to bag me hazmat feeds because granulated honey is a liquid. You learn ways around it, so I can't blame some of the places for being particular. It's the bs factor of having break off numbers of hives that get x'd out of orders because at certain times of the year big outfits don't deal with certain types of orders unless they feel like it...Other times getting a queen bee from some places comes with an earfull of great knowledge from the same breeder. Getting queen bees is like chasing nectar flows, and watching what flower opens.
Cherry picking on package bee orders is always a fun one to get around. Young fuzzy bees or old bees...anybody can tell which is which with a good eye. I had a major supplier try send abunch of 2 lb packages(italians) home with me when I ordered/payed for 3's and had the receipts. 3's with carni queens... I went to the middle of the stack where all the young fuzzy shake bees/carnis were and went home with what I payed for. I haven't been back since.
I could toss names around but it wouldn't make for good business relationships in the future. It makes sense that some businesses move overseas, to other countries, etc..and that certain beekeepers send their stuff across the border to avoid american big ag practices/and u.s. government corn-friendly regs. Those guys know who they are that don't want to deal with 250-300 package orders, or even have the common courtesy of returning a phone call.
Some suppliers out in california/breeders send pure junk up to certain areas of the u.s.... Thousands of packages and queen bees later.
Last edited by grumpybeeman; 02-01-2014 at 11:36 PM.
Are you under the impression that all almonds pollinators have burnt out queen that are genetically bred for pollinating almonds and nothing more? Thousands of hives come from Idaho, Montana, and Dakotas that produce clover honey all summer long. These bees are never shaken into packages. Most of these hives never get requeened, yet these 20k operations make 2/3 of their income off of honey. Lack of forage is a bigger problem. I know plenty of large California queen breeders who send their bees to Montana for sweet clover honey and then select breeders that produced over 200lb honey. Olivarez, Park Burris queens, and Parks queens just to name a few.
Thousands, that's the key word. Big breeders give big buyers good bees. The rest of us get junk... surprise surprise. lack of forrage I agree with. Big multi thousand colony operations get the cherry picked colonies, and the best queens first come first served. That's a no brainer. HOWEVER, you guys that are lucky enough to be isolated in mountain areas, islands, etc don't get effected by the big ag and other factors...as bad. Catch 22.
Theres alot of people getting screwed over with bad bees, and short deals...But no one will address that because it's bad for business.
Really good bees used to be sent up here to Wi....Some people still have good ones so I hear(up north). If I were in the business of selling package bees and queens I'd send large amounts to select areas in the country(mountain, isolated, etc)...And I'd make sure whoever bought my bees would talk a good story about how great they are. Theres nothing wrong with yard selection, migration, etc... But watch closely....Once you start having queens that last 7-8 months...It will only get worse whether you like it or not....Then when a better business opportunity comes along to start up a new package bee sales location, migratory beekeeper with thousands of hives, or new area untested for hive yards...Certain breeders down in california will send you a load of doo doo and you'll be in a mess. I've seen this with several several thousand packages being sent to wisconsin from CERTAIN breeders in california. I choose not to name specific people, and would rather let people learn for themselves based on observation.
Take 2 packages of bees...One with old bees mostly...And the occasional shake with lots of young fuzzy bees...and see which one does better by far.
Last edited by grumpybeeman; 02-02-2014 at 12:19 AM.
Grumpy, man up and name some names. Or are you scared of taking some heat?
Grumpy, with all due respect, you are the one making accusations about events that happened to you. Please name names so that others can provide their input. Up to this point we don't know specifically who you are talking. There may be others here that have a different experience with these same people.
You can name names, but it's just a big smoke screen that will get put out in response to naming problem sources, on how it's something else other than bad bees. The problem with bee die-offs is that people don't call things for what they are. Bad genetics from select breeding and garbage in california. Bad weather in california/drought? Watch regardless of how bad the breeding issues are...Orders will be shipped like usual to a fresh troop of unknowing souls.
Last edited by Barry; 02-03-2014 at 08:55 AM. Reason: quoting