loss expectations?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Florida
    Posts
    1,140

    Default loss expectations?

    If I use bees that survived this harsh winter locally to develop treatment free survivors, who many hives should I expect to lose? I started the year with two nuc and am looking to get to 10 hives by the end of the season. The local breeder I got them from has been breeding for many years, but does treat. Winter loses in our area were high.
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Colorado Springs, CO United States
    Posts
    1,379

    Default Re: loss expectations?

    Lots of variables, such as how strong will these 10 hives be in the Fall? I would start with asking the breeder what his average loses were for the past Winters. I would think that would give you an ideal of how many hives you should expect to lose. And then there is that management thing
    Please excuse me, I am now free to go manage & treat ;)
    my ladies the best way I know how.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Kamloops, BC, Canada
    Posts
    1,407

    Default Re: loss expectations?

    From the Sam Comfort video posted recently, there seem to be lots of tf folks in Florida. I would do some sleuthing and see if there is a tf source nearby. But local treated bees are a good second choice. I'm guessing there are lots of ferals in your area so perhaps hanging some swarm traps (now) is a good way to get started and add to your numbers starting out.

    From a Canadian perspective zone 9a isn't that harsh.

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    NW Florida
    Posts
    1,140

    Default Re: loss expectations?

    I can't find a local with treatment free, but there is a central Florida beek that sells them. I'm in the NW and it can take well over 20 hours to drive to the other end of Florida. I know there are a lot of variables that can mess up any prediction. I'm just trying to hedge my bet. The local guy was recently quoted in an article saying we have 35-50% loss on hives per year.

    Not sure I could handle a Canadian winter. I've only been around real snow once. It sometimes gets down to freezing here, but usually only for a week or two. However, this past winter was colder and it lasted longer than usual. Forage in the fall is relatively good and warmer days during the winter the nettles are often still in bloom.
    Beek since 2016: Hardiness Zone 9a: in NW Florida

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