Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free - Page 5
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  1. #81
    Join Date
    May 2016
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    Madison, AL
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    82

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    Thanks gww. How long have you been a keeper of Bees?

    Silwolke lack of drawn comb is also a limitation I am currently experiencing as I have just started. It's a close second right behind a lack of queens. Both of which I hope to improve next season. Do ing what I can while trying not to negatively impact the long term.

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  3. #82
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
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    4,033

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Jovian
    I am starting my third summer.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  4. #83
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Green Ridge, Missouri
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    76

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Ok - now I will throw another wrench in the mix. MDA splitter or OTS method of queen rearing talks about specifically splitting after June for the purpose of rearing nucs, giving brood breaks for varroa etc. I am a strong proponent of having a young queen in the hive who is going to lay well. What better way to get that than to raise them.....I think you have months left to make splits. Some worry they wont have enough to make it and so on......Please tell me - will two or three queens laying eggs lay more than a single queen. Yes, you might not get the honey in the main flow, numbers might be down for a month and so on. But, split now or next month and in two months you will have all sorts of young brood for any possible aug/sept flow. And you know what - say they do terrible and don't build up. It only takes a bit to combine them......and you have all that drawn comb and resources and have given a brood break. You can do much more with 5 small queen right hives over a single big queen right hive......a single queen is only going to lay that amount - more queens equals more brood equals more workforce. Just another idea......

  5. #84
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    10,170

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    a poster asks:

    What does this look like - the drones returning with evidence of having mated? I thought they died after mating.
    yes, they do die after mating.

    but some will make it back to the hive(s) and crawl around on the ground out in front before they die.

    if you pick those up, turn them upside down, and happen to see a thick liquid oozing out where their penis used to be you can be sure they were successful at having mated.
    journaling the growth of a (mite) treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  6. #85
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
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    4,033

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Hickory
    But mel is only making bees to sale. The young queens are not going to lay a lot of eggs if there are not bees to cover those eggs and if there is not a lot of food coming in. I am not saying it won't work but wonder how much feeding is going to be involved. The only guy I know that has bees has the postition that big hives have a better chance at wintering and michael palmer likes making queens on a flow to have well fed queens. There are probibly a hundred ways to skin a cat and picking one is part of it and doing all the things inolved with that pick is going to make it work better.
    I have not had the guts to make late splits yet but will be interrested in how it goes. I did read some threads on here where a guy made 18 (and other numbers) and lost them all over winter. Even mel says you might lose 75 percent and still be ahead if bees is what you want to make.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  7. #86
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
    Posts
    3,831

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Late splits need drawn comb and lots of feeding to be successful. But otherwise, they will do fine until the queen shuts down for winter. July is the Richmond area's best month for summer walkaway splits. After that, you need a queen. After the end of August, you are wasting time and resources.
    Last edited by JWPalmer; 05-15-2018 at 07:37 PM. Reason: Location info
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  8. #87
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    Rosebud Missouri
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    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Jw
    Are you in growing zone 7 or 8? Hickory is probibly like me in zone 5B.
    Not questioning the advice but just curious cause I looked a map and could not tell for sure.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  9. #88
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Madison, AL
    Posts
    82

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Hickory , you make some good arguments and I agree with much of what you said. With that though this is my first year with bees practically speaking as such I don't want to push my luck and would rather prepare a better long term base. Yes I would believe more hives with queens makes more useful resources but that's what I don't have really is queens and yes I can do splits for them to raise more but as SP (who is very close to my location) pointed out by the time that happens and brood is raised our flow is well over. Now Im not opposed to feeding to help the bees through but a personal choice of mine is that I help the bees stay in sync with the local environment and not get them dependent or out of sync. Yes a one time thing isn't likely to do that but once you start down that road... Anyway as I said once I have more experience and can actually accurately judge a flow myself, find a queen bee in a big hive in under 30 minutes etc I will probably try a few late splits. My motto here is don't harm what I already have but I ain't gonna look a gift horse in the mouth either.

    JW I have the same question as gww dies above as I am trying to compare the timelines you state to how your flows are so that I can adjust them to what we have here.

  10. #89
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    Apr 2017
    Location
    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Hey guys, I am in zone 7a. By Easter when I made my first splits, night were mostly above 40, which is my target temp. Richmond does not have a fall flow like most of the country, by July, we are done for the year and feeding is necessary if you harvest the honey. My bees last year went broodless in October so I am planning for that this year.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  11. #90
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    May 2016
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    Madison, AL
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    Very nice JW. I am also in a 7a area. If what I have read and put together pans out for the flow most years our main spring flow is done by June and we have a minor fall flow around October. As expected as it may or may not be It is interesting how the flows can differ within the same zone.

  12. #91
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    Apr 2017
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    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Almost our entire flow comes from flowering trees, predominantly the tulip poplar and black locust. We don't have a significant goldenrod or astor bloom so the bees are forced to look pretty hard for enough to survive come fall. I think they foraged soybeans last year but that only lasted about two weeks.

    The tulip poplars have just started here within the past week so we are in prime time for the next month.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  13. #92
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    Jul 2017
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    NW Florida
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    1,141

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    jw I would have thought you have more there. I'm surprised you don't have goldenrod.
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

  14. #93
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    Apr 2017
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    Aylett, Virginia
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    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    I made a trip to Toledo last fall and was astounded by the vast seas of yellow flowers I saw on the drive up. I had no idea what all this talk about a goldenrod flow was until then. There is some here of course, but you can see them as individual plants growing on the roadsides. Kind of like comparing a sandbox to the beach.
    Thankfully, the bees are smarter than I am. They are doing well, in spite of my efforts to help them.

  15. #94
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    Feb 2015
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    Rosebud Missouri
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    4,033

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Jw
    Except for the temps early, Your flows sound a lot like my local flows. I do not see much golden rod around me but 12 miles away at mom and dads there are tons of it. I do have what they call old hairy field astors or frost astors and a ton of queen anns lace in july august that most bees might turn thier nose up to but mine hit. They just kill the frost astors but I see no gain in the actual hives and first year (about 1st of oct) I gave three gal sugar water in fall and second year two gal each. You would think the growing zone would change the time line more.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  16. #95
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    Decatur / Cullman, also. 35603
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    770

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Nick !!! How's the bees coming along? Great I hope. I'll be coming to Huntsville on the 1st. Of month. Dr. Appt. At 1 p.m. if ya around ,let's get togather.. talk bees ect..

  17. #96
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Madison, AL
    Posts
    82

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Hey its been a while life got busy. heres what happened.

    Hive 1: couple weeks ago looked for the laying queen. unfortunately did not see one. So even though it was late I gave them another frame of young larvae and eggs to try again from Hive 2. When I checked on them a few days later they didn't even attempt to make any queens cells with the new frame. I haven't had time to do a through inspection to see if I missed something. Hope to be able to do that this weekend. If there is no laying queen I will merge this colony with Hive 2.

    Hive 2 has propsered well and has a couple supers of honey atm. I hope to harvest some this coming weekend.

    Hive 3 has done fantastic and has filled all the bars in their hive (25 bars in the hive). I even managed to harvest 2 bars of capped honey for 7.5 lbs of Honey and 1lb 10 oz of unprocessed wax.

    Hive 4 and 5 which were the packages from wolf creek have been building up well but only have about 8 bars built up. I will likely need to feed them to ensure they get through the winter. As the flow is still going here they haven't taken the feed really well yet. I did try to correct some wayward comb on a couple bars in 4 and the comb ended up ripping off. I fixed it as best as I could but I will remove that comb once the remaining brood emerge.

    Hive 6 not populated

    Hive 7: this was the caught swarm. all 25 bars were completely filled out and all had brood. However about 2 weeks ago something happened to the queen and I found a couple capped queen cells on 2 bars with no eggs or young larvae in my inspection last week. With the problems I had with requeening and how full this hive is I took one of the bars and one bar of mostly stores and placed it in a nuc (Hive 8). and left the other bar with queen cells in this hive. I did this to improve my chances of getting a mated queen.

    Hive 8: the newly made nuc was starting to get robbed out the day after I made it so I put on a robber screen on.

    Hoping I can save at least one of the 2 queenless hives.

    Rich Sorry won't be available to meet up with you on the 1st already got a plans around then.

  18. #97
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
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    Decatur / Cullman, also. 35603
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    770

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    It's all good Nick. Hope ya got things handled there with the bees, and other. Keep us posted... Richard

  19. #98
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Madison, AL
    Posts
    82

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    It's been a fairly interesting week. I caught a fairly late swarm. The trap host just saw it a couple days ago but they had built quite a bit of comb more than 5 deeps Worth so they had been their for a week or two.

    Good news on hive one it now has a laying queen. Whose pattern looked good.

    Not so good on the earlier swarm hive that lost their queen. As there still is no laying queen. I am giving it another week to see if she just hadn't started laying.

    The two packages are continuing to grow. As well Even though I have had to start feeding as the flow has ended here and they are still on the smaller side.

    Speaking of flow I have been able to pull about 50 lbs of honey plus wax. A far cry from where would like to be but not to bad given its my first year of really having bees.

  20. #99
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Florida
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    1,141

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    That is good for what you are working with. I probably will be lucky to get that since I have been splitting constantly.
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

  21. #100
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    Decatur / Cullman, also. 35603
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    770

    Default Re: Beginning Beekeeping Treatment Free

    Sounds like you are doing well there Nick!!!! I have had a queen issue myself. I think I got it corrected... my queen cells in package hive 1 should hatch out this week. I'll know next weekend. I had like 5 or 6 cells in that hive, and made a few splits from other cells. I left the 5 there, so somebody will have to win the fight??? The first year is a real challenge, but I'm pleased. We should get to gather and look over each other's hives, and setups sometime in near future. I'd really like to see your top bar hives. I like the idea of it, and thinking of one or 2 next year. I'd like to do it with med. Frames instead of bars. Mabye bars and frames, so they can interchange? What do they call that,??? A longstroth??? Lol, not sure here.

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