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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

Well, I finally got my bees and installed them yesterday.. BTW, if you want to see how to do everything wrong and get stung in the process, check out the youtube video my buddy put together of the whole affair.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sfpXM8Lv4ro

the queen is still in her cage and I will remove the cork on thursday..

On to the questions- I live in Eastern Washington state (Colfax) and am planning on using two 10 frame deep brood boxes.. When I installed the package, I only used one.. Should I have added both? If not, when should I install the second one?

How long before they start collecting pollen and nectar? I only ask because I just installed the package yesterday and today, a gigantic cherry tree not thirty feet away came into bloom..But as of 6:00 pm this evening, there were no honeybees on it..

Can i feed my bees organic pollen (like I have seen on ebay) in lieu of pollen patties?

Also, I am using foundationless frames but I added two frames with foundation when I installed the package, which I placed toward the middle of the box with the queen cage rubber banded on one, just to give the bees a ladder to the queen.. Is this acceptable?

Thanks guys
Chris
 

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Hey all...

On to the questions- I live in Eastern Washington state (Colfax) and am planning on using two 10 frame deep brood boxes.. When I installed the package, I only used one.. Should I have added both? If not, when should I install the second one?
... No, just installing into the one box is correct. This is not a hive yet, just a package, and they can not defend one box of combs yet, much less 2 boxes. Add the second box after they have 80% of the first box drawn and filled and covered with bees.

How long before they start collecting pollen and nectar? I only ask because I just installed the package yesterday and today, a gigantic cherry tree not thirty feet away came into bloom..But as of 6:00 pm this evening, there were no honeybees on it..
... They will start immediately on the nectar, and very shortly thereafter for the pollen, as the queen starts laying. Blooms don't all have nectar at the same time of day. The time when they were foraging your cherry tree was probably the time you were not watching?

Can i feed my bees organic pollen (like I have seen on ebay) in lieu of pollen patties?
... If you like, I see no reason why you couldn't.

Also, I am using foundationless frames but I added two frames with foundation when I installed the package, which I placed toward the middle of the box with the queen cage rubber banded on one, just to give the bees a ladder to the queen.. Is this acceptable?
... Yes, quite acceptable. They do better with a ladder.

Thanks guys
Chris
I don't know if you are now or not, but a feeder of sugar water will help them get started much better and faster. I'd say it is much more needed than the pollen myself, as they need the nectar or sugar water to draw wax. Pollen is needed to raise brood. They need to draw wax before they can raise brood. Keeping sugar water feeder on until they have one full solid box built can be a very good head start for a package.
 

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Also, I sure wouldn't wait until Thursday to remove the cork in the queen cage. I recommend removing the cork from the candy end, now. Let the bees start removing the candy to release the queen in a few days. She should be busy laying eggs as soon as possible, hopefully before Thursday.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I have installed a feeder... I read in my book "The Backyard Beekeper" that I should wait 5 days before I remove the cork.. If the bees appear to be non-aggressive toward the queen at that point, then I should remove the cork. If they are still aggressive, wait a few more days.. I have also read in another bee book, that I should remove the cork within 2--3 days.. So I figured I would wait until Wed (Installed on Sunday)...
 

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The video is sooooo funny (Love the way you recorded it). But... it made my confidence level drop significantly. LOL! I'm definitely wearing gloves for this one. Where is the scared and running away emoticon?
 

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I have installed a feeder... I read in my book "The Backyard Beekeper" that I should wait 5 days before I remove the cork.. If the bees appear to be non-aggressive toward the queen at that point, then I should remove the cork. If they are still aggressive, wait a few more days.. I have also read in another bee book, that I should remove the cork within 2--3 days.. So I figured I would wait until Wed (Installed on Sunday)...
If your queen cage looked anything like mine, there are two corks--one on the candy end & the other on the opposite end. The whole purpose of the cork(s) is to prevent the package bees from getting into the candy & queen too quickly. My queen had been in the package for about 48 hours before I hived them, and there was a nice cluster of workers when I pulled her out, but I still didn't quite trust them yet. So I pulled out both corks, left the candy end alone and squished a mini marshmallow into the other end.

I would MUCH rather have them let the queen out than me, since I don't want her flying away while I've got the top open. This is the first time I've messed with a queen cage, but from everything I've read/heard/been taught at beginner beekeeping classes, you need to remove that cork so the bees can get to the candy.

I'm thinking that advice (5 days then test) was more applicable to re-queening rather than installing a queen that's actually traveled with the package. They should have at least started on getting acquainted while in transit.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well, I took your advice and went out and released the queen tonight (It's been three full days).. Crossing my fingers! Thanks!
 

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The cork on the candy end should be removed when you put the package in the hive then check Queen in 3 to 4 days if at that time the quen has not been released I would wait maybe 1 more day then remove the cork on the other end and release the Queen myself.
 
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