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I looked up their locations.
Both places are reasonably remote (not the same as isolated, but still good).
For sure, NOT suburbs run over by massive and unregulated bee trafficking.
That alone is a huge factor.

Troy Hall comes from Plainfield, NH:
Plainfield is a town in Sullivan County, New Hampshire, United States. At the 2010 census, the town had a total population of 2,364. The town is home to the Helen Woodruff Smith Bird Sanctuary and Annie Duncan State Forest.
Cory Stevens comes from Bloomfield, MO (right next to Crowley's Ridge Conservation Area, Bloomfield, MO 63825)
Stevens Bee Company
21483 County Rd 237
Bloomfield, MO 63825
 

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Gave it a listen.
Nothing really new.
Location is the key - to reiterate.

If they did what they do at my place, they'd be getting about 100% losses too now and then.
If I did what I already do at their place, I'd be getting 50% losses too (and would be totally satisfied with the TF ways as working me).

Reasonably remote place with TF favorable nuances <> bee-trafficking hub.
And yet, nothing in this regard was pointed out (as if this is a non-factor).
I'd call this video misleading that way.

PS: the guy from MO mentioned the bees from Arkansas as desirable;
I had bees from Arkansas - they got diluted to nothing in my backyard in about 3-4 years
 

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Agreed, but someone has to start somewhere. 100% losses like we get don't allow for any improvement obviously. Stress a population a little at a time and maybe some good will come of it. I am waiting for some results for Randy Oliver's bees. They sound good while under his care, but what happens when the bees are raised by someone else in a different location?
 

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They sound good while under his care, but what happens when the bees are raised by someone else in a different location?
Ideally the bees for our location should be raised at our location.
And this is where we struggle.
I am not ready to run 50 units per season so that I could afford loosing 45-48 of them and still continue.
Too much time to invest at the moment.
Running too few units makes too little of a dent against the local bee-traffickers - so that does not help either.

PS: I like this new term that came to me - the bee-traffickers. :)
 

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they did what they do at my place, they'd be getting about 100% losses too now and then.
Well they aren't going to run a commercial honey operation in a suburban backyard, so there is that

If I did what I already do at their place, I'd be getting 50% losses too (and would be satisfied).
I don't think so.. they didn't go chasing almond bees swarms.. they bought VSH breeders, and then did their own selection program, they graft, cory has a strong testing and II program, etc
they work very hard at their bees and still take those losses. What you do is by design low input beekeeping, I would suspect your losses would be a good deal higher then theirs, outher wize they are working way to hard..

"bee trafficking" isn't the problem, mite bomb from failing hives (treated or untreated) along with high hive dencinstys can be
but your choosing to keep bees were you are keeping them, you could source a more aguratual area and get away from the 2 hives on every block suburbs
.. I know for me even a few miles can make a big impact

That being said, you live in a ruff state for bees, hobbyist losses for treating beekeepers is over 50%
winter of 19-20 TF keepers took 88% losses, 18-19 was 68%, 17-18 was 82%, so you losses are right in stride with your state averages

100% losses like we get don't allow for any improvement obviously
yep, at some point you may have to settle for small steps and pick what is better based on objective metrics... but that assumes you control your genetics , I have covered the fallacy of splitting the 50% that lives improves you stock... bare bone you got to graft, and likely its going to take more then that

Ideally the bees for our location should be raised at our location.
And this is where we struggle
while I agree to a point(and market my queens to that effect)... we can't discount the success Canadian beekeepers are having overwintering NZ packages and HI queens........
packages from the other side of the pond do look different, lol
r/Beekeeping - Welcoming some New Zealand bees into Canada.

 

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Ideally the bees for our location should be raised at our location.
That's the mantra we hear all the time, but, in practice it doesn't bear out.

An inexperienced beekeeper listens to the drivel online about such things, buys bees from somebody local who has be propogating them for 20+ years, has not brought in stock in that time, good hardy 'local stock', they die due to neglect, then the newbie whines about getting crap bees.

In the same year, I get 10 packages of New Zealand bees in March, tend them properly, and in the fall I have 15 healthy colonies headed into the winter after harvesting a honey crop from those crappy import bees.

I think far to many folks blame the bees for PPBK, it's an easy cop out, the online echo chamber constantly re-inforces that cop out. Bees die, go online and complain about bees the echo chamber about 'crap bees, gotta have local bees' starts re-inforceing the thought that 'If I could just get local magic bees, life would be nirvanna'.

I have 30 colonies out back, every one of the originated either as an imported package, or splits from those packages. I have colonies in 10 frame doubles, 10 frame singles, 5 frame doubles and mating nucs, all doing well in mid December.

If this 'local bees' mantra was so true, how come all of my bees are looking really good at this time of the year, but, the folks just 500 meters up the road have deadouts ? They started with those mythical 'local bees', and 2 years in a row have had the same result, dead by December.
 

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packages from the other side of the pond do look different, lol
Those are the Aritaki packages in the photo you posted. The Kintail packages from NZ look a bit more traditional. They are made out of cardboard with plastic screen, feed can with gel in the center. FYI, they do well, even if you hive them in the snow. This photo is from March 8 hiving packages in the snow.

61536
 

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Well they aren't going to run a commercial honey operation in a suburban backyard, so there is that

I don't think so.. they didn't go chasing almond bees swarms.. they bought VSH breeders, and then did their own selection program,
Well, clearly, "my place" is NOT only my own backyard.
I got about 10-20 square miles where my bees are scattered.
So, there is that
:)

Like I said many times - I started initially by importing bees from Arkansas (mentioned in the video, btw).
Last winter I lost the last bees of that line (that would have been the 3 winters for them - did not happen). Will see how my current "breeder queen" from a local breeder winters - I like what I see so far.
So, there is that.

Of course, I chase the swarms too - because you never know what you gonna get.
We have the imported Russian hybrids in the vicinity (I might have gotten one swarm last summer, in fact).
So, there is that.
 

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"bee trafficking" isn't the problem, mite bomb from failing hives (treated or untreated) along with high hive dencinstys can be
but your choosing to keep bees were you are keeping them
No secret - I have 7 yards (not just the backyard).
Yes, I am choosing my locations - that is my program.
And still not much I can do with my little scale. Just completely run over.

But the "bee trafficking" is a real problem across the entire area of mine.
I predict our local "trafficker" will spam re-send their annual email in just few weeks from now.
It goes like this (pasting):

The first load is March 19th. Those that want on that load need to have drawn comb, best to have honey frames and aren't faint hearted. The loads will start coming every few days after that. It is going to happen fast.
If you want Russians call me right away. Limited supply. On a great note, many winter survivals this year. So far this has been one of the best over-wintered survival rates in years.
And so it goes - the "almond bees" and all sorts of other stuff, even "Russians".
Last year they dumped some "Buckfast".
(the sources are always confidential; we asked where the "Russian" came from - the "trafficker" just exploded on us for asking).
Impatient people jump on these - because "buy now OR there will be no more bees left".
Almost no one wants to wait until June for our local sellers.
 

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my take is you catch swarms from the same bees your complaining about, bring them home and let them collapse from mites damanging the chances of any good stock you may have had...
And then point the finger at others for your problems.
Your impact is the same as any of the other people buying from the traffickers,.
Sure your getting them 2nd hand and free, but your puting the same DNA in to the DCAs as the people who bought that queen last year from a trafficker.
And still not much I can do with my little scale. Just completely run over.
run over by what exactly?
The same genetics your keeping in most of your hives?
or their mite pressure from poor control just like your creating yourself by not dealing with high loads?
IIRR you have yet to have a queen hit 2 years (the point most would start evaluating her as a breeder).. so its not like your losing traits to outcrossing, they just haven't had what it takes to do a full build up and over winter, so what your neighbor keeps isn't a problem, it may be in the future, but your not there yet..So your problems lie elsewhere
 
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my take is you catch swarms from the same bees your complaining about, bring them home and let them collapse from mites damanging the chances of any good stock you may have had...
And then point the finger at others for your problems.
I think that's a pretty good summary. But this thread is showing us a new tidbit out of that kind of 'program', now it includes calling folks names when blaming them for neglected bees that die off.
 

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it includes calling folks names when blaming them for neglected bees that die off.
Kinda of comes with the territory when trying to make a point about (perceived or real) negative behaviors... I have called hands off beekeepers "bee havers" and those that run OAV off label "vape heads". I won't begrudge him " traffickers"
 

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Kinda of comes with the territory when trying to make a point about (perceived or real) negative behaviors... I have called hands off beekeepers "bee havers" and those that run OAV off label "vape heads". I won't begrudge him " traffickers"

'Bee haver' is a term long established in the beekeeping community to describe the 'hands off' approach, it's been around much longer than I have. It is not necessarily a dergatory term.

Calling somebody a 'Trafficker' is a new derogatory slur intended to imply somebody is dealing with illicit drugs. In fact what you likely have is a small business person trying to eke a modest income by reselling a product that is a common product and has been used within the industry for decades. This kind of online slur campaign has hurt many small folks over time, folks with a personal grudge go online and start a slur campaign to drive business away from honest folks doing an honest job.

It has been my experience over time, when folks resort to calling names, it's because they have no other data with which to try make a point, and it's a sure sign they have been defeated by logic, so will resort to bluster to try 'win' the discussion.

Greg's bees die from PPBK. It is that simple.
 

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Agreed, but someone has to start somewhere. 100% losses like we get don't allow for any improvement obviously. Stress a population a little at a time and maybe some good will come of it. I am waiting for some results for Randy Oliver's bees. They sound good while under his care, but what happens when the bees are raised by someone else in a different location?
They get subjected to new viruses and die unless their dealing with same type viruses they have been handling..there's also a difference in coming through winter "surviving" and only 2 poorly covered frames, not ready for production... and coming out so strong their dripping off the frames ready to skim nuc from an put into honey production..Some may indeed come out strong, not usually.. some may survive... Wait until there huge where they can finally brood up 8-9 frames solid and see how they do... It's quite different usually...
 

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Well this is the treatment free forum and the idea I think is to allow TF keeps to showcase their efforts. In some cases the takeaway message will be that it is not very rewarding. I think I was just starting to follow along when Oldtimer was relating his tribulations with the bees and bee gurus of the time. That was one story that formed my direction.

I am sure that much can be accomplished by informed, methodical and controlled culling and selection but my takeaway was that it is too hard to maintain to justify the effort. It seems it is a bit like riding a bicycle; if you slow down or quit pedalling you fall over. That is just my personal cost benefit analysis and many others get their reward from taking on the challenge. The prospect of the inevitabley higher losses was personally a game killer.

The fellow I bought my bees from apparently has a selection process that results in dependable bees in regards to disposition, production, and winter survival. I will be happy if I can be selective enough to maintain their qualities. Google Earth seems to suggest I am just about sitting on a poster card drone congregation site.

Gregs situation, with so much outside influence, might indeed make trait maintenance next to impossible. There has to be a more productive selection process than colony collapse. In fact so often the most productive hives crash the hardest from mites.

Certainly we are not all on the same trip!
 

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It is not necessarily a derogatory term.
it is when I use it 😝

Greg's bees die from PPBK. It is that simple.
kinda/sort of maybe?
swarms are free, they serve his purpose and he gets a big enuff harvest to meet his goals . When packages were cheap many of your countrymen simply shook out there bees at the end of the season and let them starve to death as that met thier goals.. Aside form the mite bombs impacting his neighbors I see little difference .
That said I agree they die as a direct result of his management program and blame should not be placed on others for his losses

It has been my experience over time, when folks resort to calling names, it's because they have no other data with which to try make a point
Or they want to tug at emotions (marketing)
There is a common theme in TF to blame the "treaters" for their lack of sucess.. While having lots of hives that have poorly controlled mites around you (TF and undertreated) can often mean TF stocks (and even treated ones) can't flourish, that's no different then saying your Feed Free and your bees keep starving every other year were you keep them... You have 2 realistic choices.. Move to better forage or feed when you have bad nectar years. You could blame over grazing (as in the case in many urban areas) do to the beekeepers around you but your just at fault as they are

Like wize you can't blame your lack of breeding success on those around you.. Breeding bees takes a lot of hard work....a large population to select form, Good metrics to screen for level of trait expression, heavy propagation of selected breeders to get maximum variety to select the next round from , mating control, etc. These things don't change regardless of what your selecting for and if you don't satisfy the requirements you're not going to make progress, and that's your fault for not providing what's needed. The fantasy sold by the gurus of having a few hives and splitting what lives and making any progress is just that, a fantasy. Sure there are areas with a background of resistance and your stock will be more like the background and get better without crosing, but that's not the case for most areas.

even with the 1st step... grafting/queen rearing I often hear "I can't because" and then a long list of excuses... the realty is if they are motivated and educated even someone starting with a package could be queen rearing by mid summer.
Same with a higher level of genetic control... you CAN Instrumental Inseminate if you CHOSE to... You CAN set up a moonlight mating progam if you CHOSE to..
but people chose not not, just like they chose not to graft.

When someone says they can't control their genetics "because", the 1st question I ask is are they grafting, almost all the time the answer is a firm no...
If your not grafting, your not even trying
The strongest tool that a beekeeper has for controlling colony genetics is the grafting needle-Dee Lusby
 

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Cory has another interesting discussion up today with Mr. Dann Purvis who formally managed Purvis Brothers Bees. It is a long and meandering discussion but there is some really interesting stuff in there about resistance breeding and some of Dann's unorthodox approaches- particularly starting at about the 1:04 mark on:
 

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while I agree to a point(and market my queens to that effect)... we can't discount the success Canadian beekeepers are having overwintering NZ packages and HI queens........
packages from the other side of the pond do look different, lol

NZ bees are fine until they bring in the "next" Mite the ,, trophlayla not sure the spelling.

As far as folks success or failure, IMO the 3 most important things:
location to other bees mites Virus spores
location to clean floral sources, and clean water healthy food inputs
location Away from pesticides/pollution less poison's the better

Since bees lived successfully for more than 100,000 years with out mans influence, the rest of "beekeeping" is minutia, meant for the betterment of the hive owner, or keeping where the bees would not be, deserts, north, etc.

BTW I am not minimizing the minutia, I have waded in deep and love it. But stirring emotion over it, is really picking the white stuff out of the chicken droppings......

my true hope is that we do not destroy the honey bee by saving it, or claiming to try to save it.

Why would most folks go ra ra over stopping "invasive species" then bring in something from a long ways away and think it is normal?

GG
 
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