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I get some useful information from our local beekeeping club. I typically attend meetings a couple of times a year to learn where they have their colonies, and see if they are having issues.

Back before COVID they'd have invited speakers, and I got ALOT OF really really good info from those speakers.

Here on beesource, info is more freely given and there's much less tension.
Yeah, don't get me wrong. There are some bang-up local clubs that are bringing in guys like Palmer and Randy Oliver sometimes. I just don't think that's "the norm" nationwide. I suspect that the quality is vastly different from club-to-club.
 

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My local club has a few younger generation beekeepers like myself who have been very, very successful. This is unusual, because this area typically has like a 40-50% mortality rate for bees, so I do try to attend and pay attention. I pick up some good tidbits.
 

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Howdy,

It's hard to tell what happened, but this has been a pretty bad year for central Texas. My guess is as someone else said, mites took the bees down and then they got robbed out. Of course that is just a guess.

I'm a member of the WCABA that was mentioned and I would definitely recommend you join at least at the begining of next year. They have been doing zoom meetings that you should be able to watch online however this month they are planning to try and resume in person at the Georgetown Library.

Here's my advice though. If you're a member, they do a nuc and queen purchase at the beginning of the year (around April is delivery, so the orders probably have to be in end of Feb).
They had been $150 per Nuc which is a pretty good price for this area, or really any area. So I would recommend that you join and pick up a Nuc or preferably 2 early next year. At the least, buy a nuc and a queen and split it when you get home. Queens were $35 if I remember correctly.

I bought a couple of the Nucs this year because of the price and because they came in wooden Nuc boxes (not bad again for the price). They are some gentle bees that built comb like crazy and produced honey very well despite the horrible year Texas had. I dont even have to smoke these bees. They are Italians (you would think carniolans based on the temperment).

In the mean time definitely check out Bob Binnie's videos on Mites (or really everything he does is great). And get yourself familiar with varroa mites and how to treat for varroa. You will want to learn about this in order to keep your bees healthy going forward.

Once you read about Varroa and treating for them, you can also find information on building a oxcalic acid vaporizer on this forum or purchasing one from someone on here, or myself if thats the route you choose to take.

Good luck!

Blain
 
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