Honeybees and Beekeeping

Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: scalabro On: Sat Aug 15, 2015 5:08 pm

Calling all bee freaks :shock:

Looking forward to having some busy bees in my back yard. A friend told me of a guy who was nice enough to install this setup in my back yard at no cost. He does all the work/upkeep, and I get some free honey!

I know nothing of bees/aviaries except that hopefully my apples, pears and peaches will be more productive going forward. Also we are hoping backyard honey will help my daughters allergies come spring.

Four hives will be installed tomorrow I think and I'll post some more pics when the little guys get here.

All advice appreciated :D

Cheers,
Scott
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scalabro
 
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: KLook On: Sat Aug 15, 2015 8:50 pm

I don't know what advice I could offer. It is a great thing that someone will set up hives for you, he must need the space and you have a good spot. Your production should increase, that is why they rent them out after all, and just enjoy the amazing little societies they are. I also hope the honey helps with the allergies.

Kevin
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: lowfog01 On: Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:40 am

scalabro wrote:Calling all bee freaks :shock:

Looking forward to having some busy bees in my back yard. A friend told me of a guy who was nice enough to install this setup in my back yard at no cost. He does all the work/upkeep, and I get some free honey!


You just described the business plan of the boys I'm mentoring. They have spent the last 2 years building the number of hives they have - they are up to 5 now. Currently all the hives are at one location. In the Spring they will split the existing hives as a swarm control measure and place the new hives at various houses throughout Springfield in exchange for a portion of the honey.

Any money the boys make from selling honey and bees will go to college and church missions. Further, they now have a skill that is highly marketable. Summer jobs at the larger apiaries pay a lot.

Beekeeping is certainly working out for them. Lisa
lowfog01
 
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: lzaharis On: Sun Aug 16, 2015 10:10 am

OK,

now the subject of lawn mowers and colony placement comes to the front.

I would like to purchase one of the twin hive plastic beehives from the folks in England through the US distributor http://www.omlet.us as they have had great luck with them and seem to be much less work and apparently do not have to be wrapped as they are injection molded with an air gap to insulate the hives.

These hives are kept off the ground with wrap around metal legs that can be secured with cement blocks to hold them down against high winds or held in place with bent rebar as one way to prevent tipovers I imagine.

I have cattle panels that I can use to surround them to protect them from larger animals and perhaps racoons as well.

I would want to place a weed barrrier under them but reflecting heat or absorbing the heat and then having it radiate up at the hive is a concern.

I am also concerned about deep snows and whether leaving the hive at the back of the property is an issue as I want to protect the hive in any weather extremes AND still be able to provide Cane Sugar water for food.

Saying that, the Old Farmers Almanac came out with its 2015-16 weather prognostication yesterday on the news reports and it certainly looks good for burning the black rocks.

I will be getting involved with the Cornell University Cooperative Extension Bee Program here too so I will be better prepared.

Even though I have lifetime immunity to honey bee stings I will still be using a bee suit. My having been being swarmed by white face hornets in the eastern drought of 2006-8 and almost crossing the void to the Pearly Gates was an experience-400 allergy injections later I found I only had immunity to honey bee venom SO I carry 2-4 epi pens on my person due to this issue.

Thanks much,

Leon
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: KLook On: Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:01 pm

My having been being swarmed by white face hornets in the eastern drought of 2006-8 and almost crossing the void to the Pearly Gates was an experience-400 allergy injections later I found I only had immunity to honey bee venom


Damn it my friend! That must have been extremely painful! Those SOB's really hurt! I found limited success wintering bees over in NE Maine, but things have changed with equipment. The Extension will be an awesome resource.
I am thinking about building some custom hives after watching some online video's and such. Something that uses regular frames but configures them differently and adds insulation. I don't need it so much in SE Tenn. but I like to make things like that anyways.

Kevin
KLook
 
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: lzaharis On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 7:01 am

KLook wrote:
My having been being swarmed by white face hornets in the eastern drought of 2006-8 and almost crossing the void to the Pearly Gates was an experience-400 allergy injections later I found I only had immunity to honey bee venom


Damn it my friend! That must have been extremely painful! Those SOB's really hurt! I found limited success wintering bees over in NE Maine, but things have changed with equipment. The Extension will be an awesome resource.
I am thinking about building some custom hives after watching some online video's and such. Something that uses regular frames but configures them differently and adds insulation. I don't need it so much in SE Tenn. but I like to make things like that anyways.


=========================================================================================

I was convinced that the beehives from Omelet were the way
to go the minute I saw them. They are high enough off the
ground skunks cannot get to them andd they use the standard
frames for what its worth.
lzaharis
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Keystoker KAA-4-1 dual fuel boiler
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: scalabro On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 7:56 am

Thanks for the link Leon. That British hive system certainly looks well thought out, at least to a laymen like me!

Also, when I looked at the chicken coup system it makes me want to have hens :D

The bees were dilivered after dark last night.....
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scalabro
 
Baseburners & Antiques: 2 Crawford 40's, PP Stewart No. 14, Abendroth Bros "Record 40"
Coal Size/Type: Stove / Anthracite.
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: lowfog01 On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:26 am

Cool. I have to smile. DK always says you can tell how successful a beekeeper is by the paint on his boxes. By implication, a beekeeper, me for example , with fresh, matching paint on the boxes is less successful at producing honey and has more to time to paint. I don't know about all beekeepers but there maybe a smidgen of truth in my case. :)
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: lowfog01 On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 8:32 am

lzaharis wrote:OK,

now the subject of lawn mowers and colony placement comes to the front.

Leon


Wow, it’s great that you are getting bee hives.

A lot of beekeepers put mulch around their beehives to keep the weeds and grass out. But if the area around your beehives needs mowing, mow it. Just don’t pass directly in front of the hive. Work from the side. As a rule you shouldn’t walk within 10 feet of the front of the hive. That’s the bee’s flight path. After 10 feet the bees are 20 ft up and gone. You can reduce that 10 ft clearance by planting a tall hedge or putting a fence up in front of the hive.

As for the site of your apiary, I’d get a basic beekeeping book like the “Backyard Beekeeper.” They spend a lot of time talking about the best locations for beehives.

I have to say I had never heard of “BeeHaus.” I did a quick internet search but didn’t find much beyond what the company said. That concerns me; for that much money I’d like to hear more of what actual owners have to say about them.

It will be interesting to see how they work out. Take care, Lisa
lowfog01
 
Hand Fed Coal Stove: Mark II & Mark I
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: McGiever On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 11:58 am

Google would never find this, but these Bee Haus user can help in the experience dept. :)

http://club.omlet.co.uk/forum/viewforum ... f834c4a2d5
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 3:31 pm

I thought qbout this a few years ago but d3 ided against it. We have a large male black bear in the neighborhood who is relatively well behaved. Never heard of him bothering trash cans or anything else but I think the honey would be to much for him to resist.
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: McGiever On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:05 pm

Bears can be dealt with. As in the pictures above there is an electric fence w/ a solar charger.
Now you don't want the bear to crash into and through the fence unknowingly...you actually want to get him educated really quick to stay away.
Once the bee fence is set up wind a uncooked strip of bacon around a nose high fence strand and then energize the fence.
He'll soon smell the bacon while in the area and come to investigate it and then will sniff and then wrap his tongue around the bacon and live wire to get the treat...let's just say he'll not be coming back to the bee yard soon. :)
McGiever
 
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: coaledsweat On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:17 pm

I'm not wasting any bacon on a bear! :)
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: KLook On: Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:26 pm

As a guy that started beekeeping because of bears in the region that has the most bears East of the Mississippi, I can say that your results will vary with that method. I should have taken pictures over the years of the damage bears can do to anything they desire. Fence of no fence. The only method i have seen that was bullet proof, short of a bullet, was the Cherryfield Foods lowboy trailer that were set up with welded on pipes and then wrapped in heavy chain link fencing. The bears could bend em but not break em. Impressive creatures.

Kevin
KLook
 
Stoker Coal Boiler: Harman VF 3000
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Re: Honeybees and Beekeeping

PostBy: lowfog01 On: Sat Sep 05, 2015 5:40 pm

Hi everyone,

I have an update on the bees. My experiment to control the Varroa Mites without chemicals is a success.

Before I visited my mom last week, I put the queens from my top bars in queen catcher clips; think hair clips the workers can get in but the queen can't get out. I wedged the clips in the honey comb between the top bars. The goal was to stop the queen from laying eggs while still having her pheromones in the hive. The presence of her pheromones stopped the workers from raising a new queen. I know I should have pictures but my hands were sticky.

The break in the bee's brood cycle creates a break in the mites brood cycle, too, as they have no capped bee larva to hide behind to lay eggs and mature. At the end of the 24 days the only mites in the hive are those clinging to the backs of the bees. These mites are groomed off by the bees and drop through the screened bottom of the hive. The number of mites are significantly reduced.

When I got home from Mom's I went through the hives, comb by comb and "puffed" powder sugar on each one, lightly coating the bees. This increased the bee's natural grooming habits and knocked even more mites off. I went from 8 or 9 mites per 1 cup of bees to 1. This is very good. Then I released the queens.

Taking this action now, in late summer, will allow the queens to resume laying and build up the hive's strength for the upcoming winter. These new, healthier bees will be the winter bees that "will raise the bees born in the spring." They will insure the survival of the hive. Cool, huh?

Having accomplished this there is nothing else to do with the bees until the temperature drops to below 45*. Then I'll put the hives away for the winter and let the girls do what they do.

It was a good year for my bees. I only got a couple of gallons of honey this year but that's due to the Top Bar hives. I have just enough for family and friends. It's been interesting.

Take care, Lisa
lowfog01
 
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