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  1. #41
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    Before the invention of movable frames, honey was most often harvested by destroying the colony. Where do you think beekeepers got their replacement bees?
    From driven bees if they had any sense. And from feral swarms, and from people selling bees probably.

    I don't think your proposition is rooted in fact. Show me why I'm wrong.

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    Any way, you could check out what Eva Crane has to say about swarm beekeeping, and also what she says about driven bees. Driving bees was not a particularly reliable way of preserving a colony, because bees were reluctant to leave brood, and without movable frames, it was far more difficult to relocate brood combs.
    What Manley writes seems to me to disprove that. Skilled driving, as I understand it, achieves just that - the complete colony, queen and all marching out into a new skep, ready to start building again. Perhaps you leave a little comb in to help the get established.

    Could you summarise the parts you think are relevant and supply page numbers or search strings?

    Mike (UK)
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  2. #42
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by beekuk View Post
    And this one killing the brood over sulfur pits.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M788T26WIlY
    Can you summarise what's happening there for us Pete?

    Mike (UK)
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  3. #43
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Can you summarise it, preferably providing times for key parts, and tell us what you think we should take from the reference?

    Just citing book and film names and urls without close references to page numbers means we have to wade through the entiure thing to find out what it is you want to show us. That's obviously not practical.

    Mike (UK)
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  4. #44
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    Just citing book and film names and urls without close references to page numbers means we have to wade through the entiure thing to find out what it is you want to show us. That's obviously not practical.
    Gee, Mike, if you have bothered to even click on the Google Book link that Ray provided, you would see that the link takes you directly to the page which Ray thought was relevant, and even highlights the appropriate terms for you.



    That isn't a special feature that Ray dreamed up, its just the way Google Book links work AFAIK.
    Graham
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  5. #45
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    Can you summarise what's happening there for us Pete?
    I am sure you have already done that, Mike...they are harvesting the honey and killing the brood after shaking/bumping/driving out the bees, much like Manley described as druv bees, packages, to restock more skeps, and also sell on surplus bees to other beekeepers.

  6. #46
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Mike,

    .....consequently to get at their honey, the necessity for destroying the Bees follows,and the suffocating fumes of brimstone at length bring these worthies to the ground to the unwelcome pit in which they are buried, and are, alas, no more! a few minutes close the existence of thousands that had laboured for their ungrateful masters; and their once happy domicile becomes a scene of murder, of plunder, and of devastation, which is a disgrace to Bee-masters,
    page 51, Humanity to honey bees, or, Practical directions for the management of honey bees upon an improved and humane plan, by which the lives of bees may be preserved, and abundance of honey of a superior quality may be obtained by Thomas Nutt

    http://bees.library.cornell.edu/cach...t.content.html

    The old literature is full of references to killing bees, even Manley (who you're using as an example here) wrote, in 'Honey Farming' page 16.

    Every village had two or three skeppists, and most of them would let you have the bees that were to be 'taken up' rather than kill them.
    remember, here we're talking about the early twentieth century and still, there's a remnant of the historical practice being followed.
    Last edited by Rolande; 03-22-2014 at 04:45 AM.

  7. #47
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    Just citing book and film names and urls without close references to page numbers means we have to wade through the entiure thing to find out what it is you want to show us. That's obviously not practical.

    Mike (UK)
    It is practical. There are no pages it's a video. It takes 12 minutes. Watch it.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  8. #48
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by beekuk View Post
    ..they are harvesting the honey and killing the brood after shaking/bumping/driving out the bees, much like Manley described as druv bees, packages, to restock more skeps, and also sell on surplus bees to other beekeepers.
    So the driven bees are saved, the brood is killed. At least in some cases.

    Is the brood killed and preserved - so that it doesn't all go mouldly while awaiting further processing?

    Can we go back to the beginning now, Ray and ask just what it is you are saying about bees and swarminess and raising resistance, and historical practices?

    Are beekeepers relying on feral swarms each spring to supply new bees, or overwintering them after harvesting, or a bit of both?

    I'm imagining that skep beekeeping involves having (generally not large) skeps filled to capacity, which will provoke swarming every time. I'm not sure how that equates to Ray's assertion that 'swarminess is desirable' for skeppists, and was therefore bred in (is that what you were saying Ray?)

    We talked a bit quite recently about what seems to be a lately evolved strategy in ferals involving summer brood breaks, simply by the queen shutting down. That would have a bearing on this topic too?

    As I say, can you recap and restate your ideas Ray?

    Mike (UK)
    Last edited by mike bispham; 03-22-2014 at 03:56 AM.
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  9. #49
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by Rader Sidetrack View Post
    the link takes you directly to the page which Ray thought was relevant, and even highlights the appropriate terms for you.
    [...] the way Google Book links work AFAIK.
    Ah, well its all new to me. It didn't work like that when I looked at a link to Manley Roland had sent from another thread. I had to fetch my copy, find a search string and do a search to find it.
    Anti-husbandry: Medication + Reproduction = Continuing Sickness
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  10. #50
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    I'm imagining that skep beekeeping involves having (generally not large) skeps filled to capacity, which will provoke swarming every time. I'm not sure how that equates to Ray's assertion that 'swarminess is desirable' for skeppists, and was therefore bred in (is that what you were saying Ray?)

    Mike (UK)
    Watching the link I provided will assist your understanding. You ask these questions, a link is provided to help explain it, but looking at it is "obviously not practical" for you? Others have watched it so you may as well catch up.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  11. #51
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    Ah, well its all new to me. It didn't work like that when I looked at a link to Manley Roland had sent from another thread. I had to fetch my copy, find a search string and do a search to find it.
    That's because I was lazy and made no effort to link directly to any specific text as it was your reference which you thought important enough to mention, so your place to show exactly which bits you were referring to. I was just giving a heads-up as to where to find it on-line (although the link to the Honey Farming pdf is already here on beesource).
    Last edited by Rolande; 03-22-2014 at 04:56 AM.

  12. #52
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    Watching the link I provided will assist your understanding.
    Ok, I've watched it. Its interesting. How does it bear on the business of raising bees that cope with disease on their own?

    Mike
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  13. #53
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    If you try to take away one of their innate coping tactics, you're making trouble for yourself, and them.
    In general terms I'll agree with that. But I think the case for thinking that swarming is necessary for mite management is weak to non-existent.

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    We can talk about the long history of animal husbandry, but with bees,it wasn't so long ago that beekeepers had to destroy a colony to harvest honey.
    I think we've seen that wasn't always so. The movie we've seen shows 1 in 3 colonies being kept and an effort made to find the queens in the harvested ones. That is to preserve the colony, to maintain numbers for next year.

    I realize that is only one sort of practice but it makes sense to think it was ever thus. No farmer is going to destroy all his stock and have to start again next year from scratch. It just doens't make sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    Swarminess was considered a virtue, because swarming was the way beekeepers made increase.
    No. Productivity is the key virtue. Farmers set out to maximise yield. And they keep stock in whatever manner makes that easist. Having skeps that are vacated every 5 minutes won't cut it. In the operation we've seen they don't need to make increase - they're keeping all the queens, and they'll have collected a number of swarms over the summer. And they'll know how to make increase anytime they want with a few shaken bees and a bit of comb.

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    You ignore that history when you attempt to prevent swarms, either natural or artificial.
    Apart from your interpretation of history being dodgy, as I've said, giving bees room so they don't swarm often is selection-neutral Ray. I don't think you've made your case.

    Mike (UK)
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  14. #54
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    No farmer is going to destroy all his stock and have to start again next year from scratch. It just doens't make sense.
    I beg to differ.

    There are plenty of farmers that grow [corn for instance] that buy their seed, plant, grow, harvest and do not keep seed corn for next year. They just buy more seed next year.

    There are farmers in the US that specialize in 'finishing' cattle. They buy young animals, do not breed them, but grow them to finish weight and sent them off to the abattoir. Repeat.

    A similar process regularly happens with chicken farms in the US.

    And then we have commercial beekeepers that do the same thing. There are those that don't over winter their bees [they are shaken out] and just buy more next spring. At least one of those beekeepers posts regularly on Beesource.

    It makes economic sense.
    Graham
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  15. #55
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    Ok, I've watched it. Its interesting. How does it bear on the business of raising bees that cope with disease on their own?

    Mike
    Hmm you must have lost it. It was to help you through the rather strange comments you had made about "swarminess" (your word ).
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  16. #56
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by Rader Sidetrack View Post
    There are plenty of farmers that grow [corn for instance] that buy their seed, plant, grow, harvest and do not keep seed corn for next year. They just buy more seed next year.
    Yes, of course.

    Is there any evidence of historical skep practices where all the bees are killed, with earlier swarms replacing them - as Ray's account goes? That would (I'd have thought) been the only setting in which it became desirable to have swarmy bees.

    Mike (UK)
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  17. #57
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by Oldtimer View Post
    It was to help you through the rather strange comments you had made about "swarminess" (your word ).
    Which ones would those be?

    I'm still waiting to hear: what bearing on the business of raising 'bees that can cope with disease themselves' does this have?

    (BTW Google gets nearly 40,000 results for 'swarminess'. I don't think I made it up, and if I did I'm not ashamed.)
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  18. #58
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by rhaldridge View Post
    Before the invention of movable frames, honey was most often harvested by destroying the colony. Where do you think beekeepers got their replacement bees?
    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    I realize that is only one sort of practice but it makes sense to think it was ever thus. No farmer is going to destroy all his stock and have to start again next year from scratch. It just doens't make sense.
    Quote Originally Posted by Rader Sidetrack View Post
    And then we have commercial beekeepers that do the same thing. There are those that don't over winter their bees [they are shaken out] and just buy more next spring. At least one of those beekeepers posts regularly on Beesource.

    It makes economic sense.
    This is a rather interesting progression in thought.

    At one time, beekeepers did destroy their bees(crop) but then the movable frame came to be and no longer was it necessary to destroy the bees in order to harvest the honey. Now we have some who "destroy" the bees and start over with bees every year. It might make economic sense, as long as everything goes right. It seems a bit like placing all your eggs in one basket. If your supplier ends up having problems, you end up having problems.
    Regards, Barry

  19. #59
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by mike bispham View Post
    Yes, of course.

    Is there any evidence of historical skep practices where all the bees are killed, with earlier swarms replacing them - as Ray's account goes? That would (I'd have thought) been the only setting in which it became desirable to have swarmy bees.

    Mike (UK)
    I'm not sure that's what he claimed, maybe I'm reading his posts wrong, however the fact that he backed up his comments with the Eva Crane link suggests to me that he's actually done some research on this subject.

    Here's one statement from one of his earlier posts:

    We can talk about the long history of animal husbandry, but with bees,it wasn't so long ago that beekeepers had to destroy a colony to harvest honey. Swarminess was considered a virtue, because swarming was the way beekeepers made increase. You ignore that history when you attempt to prevent swarms, either natural or artificial.
    No mention of all stocks being killed.

    You used the fact that Manley took to driving bees in his early years to support your claim that bees were driven, not killed, despite his own reference to skeppists killing bees that I quoted earlier.

    As for the German videos where the bees are driven, sure, they're great to watch. I for one find them very interesting but lets not forget that they're relatively recent 1970's/80's(?) so may not be fully representative of older methods; just because they were using skeps doesn't mean that all technical development had stopped at some point in the past.

  20. #60
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    Default Re: Clarifying 'Treatment Free'

    Quote Originally Posted by Barry View Post
    This is a rather interesting progression in thought.
    At one time, beekeepers did destroy their bees(crop) but then the movable frame came to be and no longer was it necessary to destroy the bees in order to harvest the honey. Now we have some who "destroy" the bees and start over with bees every year. It might make economic sense, as long as everything goes right. It seems a bit like placing all your eggs in one basket. If your supplier ends up having problems, you end up having problems.
    Before skeps, the ancients used ceramic tube hives. They could harvest honey from the back of the tube without having to disturb the broodnest area in the front of the tube.

    I think that many TF beekeepers operating independently may face a 'supplier' problem if things go wrong because they have to go back to step one.

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