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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
(Cleaned-up a bit for you dial-up folks!)

Just a random assortment of pics from last year. Been so busy doing honey and produce and then family that I my posting has gone from lots to almost nothing.

SO today I am playing catch-up reading and posting. :)

I hope everyone had a good year!

First off, Bees In The Corn!

As we finished harvesting I went up to take some final moistiure samples before closing up the bin and running the fan. We had a good year for corn and we are cheating a bit and coning up about a 1000 bushels above capacity to get a better price in a couple weeks. If left there it'll start soaking up moisture post winter. Anyways...this was mid-November and the bees were looking for forage material.







The top of the bin is 40 feet up. Mostly chaff, some kernels, and I would imagine quite a bit of gluten.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
Swarms...swarms and more good swarms!


Forty Foot Extension Ladder and My Dad for Counter Balance


This was a swarm, from the same colony, in almost the same exact location and HEIGHT. Fun! :D


Ground cluster in a bush. I would have guessed it came from the grain facility directly across the street. They have upwards of three to four cut-outs every year. The building is used to store "brewer's grain" which is pretty much nothing but gluten being sent to dog food companies. One big warehouse of simple protein basically.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)

Swarm In The Air which led me to the only trap out I did this year...


This was on one of the University of Cincinnati's parking garages...well right a the front entrance to one, not on the garage proper. :D


Two weeks later. Bees moved in but some where using a smaller upper entrance to the tree that I had missed on the back side.

They had filled up half the frames with Black Locust prior to removal.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Working Out yards and the swarm yard...

SBB are ones I picked up from Dean early last spring. They work well so far. I do not migrate but these guys are in a flood way and I need to be able to move them to high ground IF needed. This location is right next one of our clover/alf-alfa fields and about 12000 acres of soybeans and managed park property that had a massive wildflower bloom this year.



First two swarms were already drawing out and loading the second deep.

This pallet is the same one month later...


Four colonies full. All are back down to double deeps or doubles with a single super depending on weight.

Did enough swarms and test splits this year to add two more pallets to this yard. Behind the hives is wetland and thistle and my gun range.

And this is how I manage these, just throw everything into the Mule...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
I was put into the hospital twice this year because of bee stings. I seem to have developed an unfortunate allergy and have started going to an allergist to tackle the problem when everything else failed.

Fortunately both times happened out of sight of the general public so I have maintained some level of humility. :D

I cannot imagine stopping though.

This is a photo of reactions to various stinging insect venoms. Yellow Jacket and Honey Bees kick my rear right now.


Last year I was stung about 40 or 50 times. This year 20. The 21st sting was the first bad reaction I have ever had.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Bee on my windshield. This is a neat vantage point for a photograp that we do not always get.


Harvested Queen Cells culled from packages placed on undrawn deeps in March.
50% ratio of raising queen from cells when provided with a frame of of workers and food from another colony.



Queen castle...



Over all 65% successful when doing 2 frame splits using frames that had queen cells on them.

Went from 11 colonies to 30. Hope to double to 60 this year.

No treatments other than powder sugar dusting the fall of 2008 and mid season splits this year. I purchase a couple packages as wax drawers and place them out in an outyard. Swarms are brought in to two yards. All but six colonies are from local mutt stock.

Not too sure if it matters. They may all crash this year. Who knows. Between the allergy and goal to keep bees that require no treatments I probably doing stuff others might not.

I was called a total of 97 times this past year for bee removal. 11 were other insects and 10 were swarms. The rest were cut outs, which I have stopped doing till I get a handle on the allergies.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Honey harvest was 80 pounds avg per 30 colonies. I also purchased some from Ron Householder (White) and Dennis Best (Orange Blossom)

Here is a pic from meeting with Orel as he headed down South to Florida.


Screened Bottom Pallets purchased from them in the back of my F350


Here is Ron's father-in-law in Ron's honey house...
 

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WONDERFUL pictures! Thank you! Sure do hope you get a handle on your new sensitivity to bee stings... bummer!
 

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Very nice pictures! It was really nice to look through them on this cold Ohio day.
Thanks for sharing them with us.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
This colony is three years of no treatments. I did splits, swarm recovery, and queen cell harvest. Pollen Patties were put on in March of 2009 to help buildup.

In the end I have six colonies this year from this one.

Picture was taken at the end of April / beginning of May in the middle of the Locust flow.



I may have posted this earlier...

My wife and I have a new addition to our home. :D

Her co-worker got Morgan the little bee outfit, so wwe had o dork it up a bit.

 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Not enough time in the day.

Right now we board 32 horses, raise, harvest, and sell 169 acres of corn and beans, and do the whole organic produce and honey thing. We are expanding into large leafy green production and root crops (potatoes, carrots, onions, and turnips) and hope to double the number of hives we have. I need to start hiring folks soon.

We still saw lumber for neighbors, but its no longer something we have time to properly do as a business, especially when the others are working out so very well. We normally do it in the winter. The mill has always been more my father's thing than mine but it was something we both enjoyed doing together. Right now he is spending the winter recovering from hip surgery he had done right after we got the harvest in. I have two sawmill "jobs" sitting off the ground ready to mill, but we are waiting on him and the customers are fine with that.

Its nice to have though and the mill has paid for itself fifty times over just in what we have sawn for ourselves. It is one more tool on our farm.
 

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I just enjoyed your pics. Thanks for sharing. It helps bring something sunny and wonderful into a Winter afternoon.

Sort of like a kickstart for us anxiously waiting for the arrival of warmer temperatures as we start planning our new year. Again, thanks so much.
 

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Great pics! Thanks for sharing. You mentioned you developed an allergy to stings after your 21st sting this year. I'm just curious about your reaction. Forgive me for sounding ignorant about the topic. I just want to know your experience since I'm beginning to have severe localized reactions myself. Like, balloon hands and such. Thanks.

PS the pic of you holding your "baybee" is absolutely precious.
 
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