About 30 years ago I started a couple of hives from packages to help pollinate my fruit trees and garden. I dabbled with the bees off & on, mostly off, but managed to capture & bring in a few swarms, etc., & at one time had 4 hives which were mostly left to their own devices and not managed. In time three of the hives died off, but one that had 3 10 frame deep hive bodies and a couple of shallow supers on it, just kept going year after year. My business is on the same 75 acres of mountain side, and a couple of years ago a swarm moved into some old supers stored in a shed next to the business where my employees park their vehicles, and I was "urged" to move them, although the bees seemed quite happy.
Since I'm now trying to be "quasi" retired, I decided to break out my old bee suit & smoker & see what the swarm would do if I gave them a little more room & some fresh foundation & last year was able to harvest more honey than we have been able to use plus giving quite a bit away. This year I hope to make a couple of splits & increase my bee yard to 4 hives.
So I guess I'm a 30 year hive owner with about 1 year's worth of experience. Reversed my supers last weekend & things are starting to boom here!
Crocus and daffodils have been blooming for about a week & winter honeysuckle is in full bloom & full of bees!
Hope to learn a lot from you folks! Looking forward to an interesting spring!