Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Guilford, CT, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude

    So...took a break from beekeeping in 2018, because basically I sucked at it. All my bees either took off (swarmed) or died. Eventually the hornets moved in and that was the last straw. I threw in the towel, cleaned my boxes and frames up and stored them away. Prior to the start of this year, I was planning my next foray into beekeeping until I decided that it wasn't the right time. The good news is that I did not have the opportunity to kill yet another package from Georgia. More good news is that my vegetable garden flourished and was not eaten by rabbits.,

    Fast forward to right now.
    Here's my plan...
    (2) deep nucs from Betterbee in April 2019, which I will transition to mediums over time.
    All mediums is the plan going forward, mostly because it's simpler and it works....maybe not for everyone, I fully understand.
    Top entrance in case we get snow in 2019.
    No treatment is a nice idea, but I don't think I want to invest my time and money into this deal just to see a bunch of mites screw it up.
    Plus...there are plenty of totally acceptable and organic treatments. Yes, I fully understand that treatment at it's core is not natural or organic....so I may re-think that approach.
    For now...that's what I'm thinking.

    Let me know your thoughts.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Covington County, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    1,509

    Default Re: Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude

    Quote Originally Posted by George Page View Post
    Yes, I fully understand that treatment at it's core is not natural or organic....so I may re-think that approach.
    Keeping bees in a box is not natural. Introducing invasive pests from the other side of the world is likewise not natural. Good luck with your new bees. Treat them.

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Shickshinny, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    1,577

    Default Re: Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude

    I looked around and found a bee supplier that would make up medium nucs for me as long as they new well in advance it makes one less thing to worry about in trying to change deeps back to mediums and you won't end up with extra deep frames you can't use the box's are easy to cut down but frames are a real pain , good luck hope it works out for you

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    KC, MO, USA
    Posts
    4,646

    Default Re: Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude

    Look for a source of bees in your local area.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    West Jordan, UT, USA
    Posts
    1,118

    Default Re: Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude

    Any local beekeepers that sell nucs or packages will start advertising in local papers (check online version) or on craigslist in late winter or early spring. Buy local for best locally performing stock.
    Until you know how to keep bees alive it is an expensive uphill battle going treatment free. You need to know how to select and breed resistant stock, and how to keep it resistant.
    Organic acids, such as formic acid and oxalic acid, are the way to go, IMO.
    Never ask a barber it he thinks you need a haircut.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Location
    Verona, NJ, USA
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: Saga of a beekeeper and starting over in 2019 with a positive attitude

    Instead of buying two deep nucs, just buy one package and spend the $ you would have spent on the other package building a few swarm traps (the 40 liter size using the plans on horizontal hive dot com) and buying Swarm Commander, in particular the lure that looks like an air freshener. Read Tom Seely's article on swarm trap placement, and put your traps out by 4/1 so the bees have a chance to check them out. If you are fortunate you will end up with a couple local swarms, already on medium frames, since that is what you'll put in the trap. The swarm commander solid lure is the real deal, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised. Invest in a good oxalic acid vaporizer (oxa vap) and a mask, and some formic acid strips like MAQS. This will give you the best chance for success and after you've built up to 6-8 hives, you can try going treatment free if you like. Stay positive and good luck!

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