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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I've been reading on the forum for a while now, but decided to register so that I could post questions and learn as I get started on my beekeeping journey.

This will actually be year number 2 for me. My dad and I started a hive last year, but alas, when we did our winter inspection we found dead bees. We had originally got a nuc from a Tim Mcfarline (Mcfarline Apiaries in Benson, Vermont) because he is treatment free, but we got a summer nuc and feel as though it was a little too late in the season. We wish we had gotten two nucs so that we would have had something to compare to, but you live and you learn.

So for this year, we put a deposit on 2 nucs from a Fred Merriam and will be picking them up in early May. We actually just finished assembling some frames this morning. We have two (8 frame) Langstroth hives ready to go. We also purchased a Warre top bar hive as well, but that is something we want to pursue after we get more experience and are able to successfully "over-winter" our bees. We are trying to do everything treatment free, and are hesitant to use the "treated" wax when assembling our foundation.

Last year we attended Betterbee's annual field day at the Washington County New York fair grounds and had the privilege of listening to Michael Palmer's lecture and found out right away how much of an expert he really is. So much so, that I actually try to view and read his posts on this forum haha.

Anyways, I'm excited to have joined the forum, and can't wait for May to get here. This winter has been too long -- I do realize I'm in Vermont, but this winter has dragged on a little too long for my liking. Heck, people are still collecting sap around my area!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Just wanted to give an update. My dad and I picked up our nucs last night from Fred Merriam in Braintree, Vermont, and made the one and a half hour return trip -- arriving home just at sunset. We were supposed to pick them up last Saturday night (5/3), however Fred needed to get an inspection done by the Department of Agriculture before he could sell them.

Fast forward to late this morning, my dad and I suited up and transferred the nucs into their new homes. Our first impression was just how docile the bees seemed when transferring. We didn't use any smoke, but it didn't seem like it would have made a difference.

After letting them get settled for a couple hours, we went down and observed them, and much to our surprise, they were already bringing in lots of pollen. It looked like they had orange Tic Tacs on their legs. We live in southern Vermont, and the dandelions are just now starting to pop up. Everything is late blooming this year. Leaves are just starting to pop on the trees.

The extended weather forecast calls for lots of rain, so we are thinking about making some syrup up. Would that be a good thing to do? When we transferred the nuc frames into the hives, we already had installed some frames from a hive that didn't make it last year, which were full of pollen/nectar. That is why we are hesitant to make the syrup. Any feedback on that would be appreciated.

Anyways, the bees seem to be happy, as are we. Here are some photos of our apiary. You can see the nuc boxes that we left on the stand just to let any remaining bees find their new home. We will be removing them tonight. Also, the middle yellow hive is currently empty. We pick up a 3rd nuc from Tim Mcfarline in Benson, Vermont this coming Saturday (5/17). We also hired Yogi The Bear to watch over our bees. Will let you know how he makes out! photo_1.jpg photo_3.jpg photo_4.jpg
 

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What a nice set-up you have there! I am in Unity NH, so guess we are kind of neighbors! I will look forward to following your progress throughout the year. I had 4 nucs last spring who didn't make it through the winter. I believe I set them to low at the bottom of the hill causing moisture and lack of proper ventilation. Getting 2 nucs in a few weeks to start over again. Any real bear problems or is the fence prophylactic?
Dale
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hi Dale, thanks for the comment. We've actually spotted bears within 50 feet of this spot on our game camera! However, the Parmak 30-mile solar fence charger seems to keep them at bay. Hopefully our new "employee" Yogi, will not be courting any dates while on the job. haha I will be sure to post updates throughout the year. Will also be interested in following your progress as well!

Alright, well off to check on the girls as we speak.
 
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