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  1. Re: Not entirely sure what else I can do to prevent winter losses.

    It's been a while, but I'll toss in my two cents:

    I always feed a protein patty, usually half a pound, under dry or damp sugar in the winter. Also, if I don't see adequate pollen going into the...
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    Re: CIS 2 Dead Hives

    Three possibilities here:

    Mites, first and foremost. Did you treat at all? I find a formic or oxalic acid treatment in late August/early September works really well. You need bees raised...
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    Re: What are the best paint for a new hive?

    The best paint is the one that sticks forever and weathers none at all, but that's just dreaming...

    What I do is put on a liberal coat of boiled linseed oil, follow that will oil base primer, then...
  4. Thread: Old frames

    by psfred
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    Re: Old frames

    Just make sure you put the old black comb where you want the queen to work, as the bees will use it first no matter where you put it. That's how I ended up with my new package building up on the...
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    Re: Cylindrical comb

    That looks like the cutout I did (with significant help!) in September. Not a flat piece of comb in it, what a mess.

    The fact that I was 25 ft in the air on a JLG forty feet out on the boom...
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    Re: Humidity in Winter Hives. Has anyone tried...

    I suspect bees in the wild, using a hollow cavity without upper ventilation, collect water condensed in the outer parts of the comb and off the bottom of the cavity. While they "make" more water...
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    Re: Bees clustering on the top board question.

    Pretty much normal. Some of my bees down here in Southern Indiana cluster in the bottom of the hive, some in the top, and some eat all the sugar I put on and fill the feeder rim space with drones in...
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    Re: Possible to Save these abandoned hives?

    You will need to get the frames out of the old hives and into new boxes. This is going to be a huge pain, given that the hives have been un-touched for so long.

    I would get or make a set of...
  9. Re: Forgot to install frames in the upper box, now what?

    I would do a cut-out. I've found the running four or five (or six) lengths of frame wire along the outside of a deep frame works pretty well -- all on one side. Lay the prepared frame down with the...
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    Re: Wackest Hive I've ever had

    Looks like it would be difficult to get in and out of the bottom entrance.

    If you have eggs and larvae, I'd leave them to it, unless you thing they need a bigger entrance.

    I would also check...
  11. Thread: Swarms in July?

    by psfred
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    Swarms in July?

    Yesterday I had the second swarm appear in my back yard -- appears to be from my hives. Checked them last weekend, one hive had a couple queen cells in a hole in the comb, figured them for a...
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    Re: What to expect after one month

    You should have the second round of brood being laid by a month. Takes a week or so usually for them to settle down and get to work raising brood, so in four weeks the first laid eggs should be...
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    Re: Question re split using double screen board

    Better to do the split before you have queen cells, as they are likely to swarm with or without them after they are made.

    The idea of a double screen split board (also known as a Snelgrove board)...
  14. Thread: Butt joint

    by psfred
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    Re: Butt joint

    Butt joints will work fairly well -- my grandpa used them for a long time.

    However, proper box joints glued with Titebond III or equivalent should last essentially forever if kept painted (and...
  15. Thread: Holes in Supers

    by psfred
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    Re: Holes in Supers

    Some of my hives are using both upper and lower entrances, others just the lower one.

    Easy to use a notched inner cover and let them decide.

    Peter
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    Re: It's been an interesting weekend....

    And I just collected a swarm in the rain -- more fun than ever!

    Peter
  17. Thread: Newbie Help!

    by psfred
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    Re: Newbie Help!

    Medium or deep (and ten or eight frame) is a personal decision. Remember that a deep full of honey and brood can weigh 90 lbs, and a deep full of honey can weigh over 100. My neighbor changed to...
  18. Thread: Cutout frames.

    by psfred
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    Cutout frames.

    After doing a couple cut-outs with empty frames and rubber bands and making a huge mess with a bazillion angry bees, I "invented" some frames for doing cutouts. Probably anything but a new idea, but...
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    It's been an interesting weekend....

    More fun that I really wanted in the bee yard this weekend, starting with missing a swarm by about 10 minutes on Friday, a couple hundred yards from my buddy who lost both his hives this spring...
  20. Thread: re-using combs

    by psfred
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    Re: re-using combs

    White specks are diagnostic for serious mite problems.

    There are a lot of reasons a hive can fail in the winter, but the two biggest ones these days are mite vectored viral diseases that cause...
  21. Thread: Gentle Bees

    by psfred
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    Re: Gentle Bees

    Lol, don't try that with a couple of my hives! Mean girls. Not horrible, but they will be banging off your veil by the time you get the inner cover off, smoke or not.

    That said, aggressive bees...
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    Re: How did you react to your first stings?

    i swelled up something fierce the first few times I remember getting stung, but that was 50 or more years ago.

    Got my first sting this year today while looking for a queen, lots of angry bees...
  23. Good news now that I finally made it out to check bees

    Finally managed to get to all my hives today. I broke my ankle on Dec 29th, and after surgery a week later and six weeks on crutches, I've gotten to the point I can actually walk on it unaided and...
  24. Thread: Building boxes

    by psfred
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    Re: Building boxes

    Glue and nails. Boxes are too expensive and too time consuming to make poor ones (also use only box joints, rabbets and but joints fail here pretty fast).

    No, it is not possible to take a good...
  25. Thread: Bees are gone

    by psfred
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    Re: Bees are gone

    Lol, very likely you had no bees long ago, and have been feeding the local "feral" hives. I would guess a newbie mistake of not feeding enough in the fall, or not treating for mites, or not feeding...
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