da rat scenerio again

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by riverrat, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    You started out with 3 hives 3 years ago as a newbee. Things was good honey was selling. Everything you did turned to gold with the bees. Honey gold that is. The fever hit you and you was hooked. Fast forward now its 3 years later your addiction has taken over your life you now have just shy of 100 hives and enough equipment to go to 150 laying around. you have bee yards spread around 2 counties with each out yard having only 5 hives since honey production averages is low in your area and 5 is about all a yard will suport. your working a full time job that requires overtime often. you leave work at 4 in the afternoon and dont get home from working the bees until dark. weekends are an all day working bees. you pick up swarms and do cutouts to help make even more money. the flow is winding down but you cant pull the honey all at once because of small hive beatle. your tired your wore out your trapped and cant get away. How you going to control the monster that you created. How can you get more efficient in managing your operation so your wife will once again realize she has a husband after all. While far fetched I have seen this scenario many times in reality. usually the person gets burned out and gets out of bees. I read once the average person who takes up bees will be out of them within 3 years when they figure out the work involved. So lets keep that from being an option. what changes would you make to keep the hives your wife and your sanity.
     
  2. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm New Member

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    My thought's are, when you get to 100 hives you are getting close to a full time job. (i'm 72 yrs. old and semi retired :roll: ) You have to make a choice between your 40hr. job, or full time beekeeping.This would be a no brainer for me,a study income or a maybe income. (unless you have deep pockets to get started). For me i would keep my study job cut back on my hives, and keep my wife and kids. :thumbsup: Jack
     

  3. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Diversity, diversity, diversity.

    I would place 25 hives in each of two yards, one being at home. Then I would begin raising queens and bees in those two yards. That would cut my honey yards down to 10 and my honey yield in half. I would then purchase a freezer and freeze each super of honey and seal in plastic until I could extract it all at once. I would use family help with hive building and extracting, bottling, making family time and fun out of it.

    That would give me honey income in good years, and bee sales income in bad years, when everyone is replacing lost hives.

    Better to not have all chickens in one basket.
     
  4. milapostol

    milapostol New Member

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    I would also sell some hives to a more manageable number, especially if I'm not enjoying it anymore.

    You can always get more bees, but you can't always get a wife and family.
     
  5. Bsweet

    Bsweet Member

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    Is there a problem with the wife? is she with you on this or is she just putting up with it? The answer there is the key as I see it. If she ain't into it then cut back on the bees/stop removeals. If she is into it ask her to do the extraction as you pull the supers, maybe let her do some of the yard checks for you.Set down and talk to her and get a game plan one way or the other.
     
  6. Bsweet

    Bsweet Member

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    Consolidate your yards,split up the yards with low production among better ones, try one or two more hives in the better yards, travel time is money.Harvest by the frame rather than by the supper, don't wait for 9 capped frames pull the 4 or 5 capped and drop in drawn in their place,spread out your harvest, don't try and do it all at once.Reevaluate your route, advoid backtracking try to set it up so you travel in a loop. If you have to harvest all at once check into renting a cold room at a processing plant to hold your suppers in until you can extract, a weeks rental should help out.
     
  7. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    I freeze my supers in a chest freezer for 24 to 48 hours, remove them, and seal them in a plastic trash bag. Then store them in a warm area until extracting time. I want them warm when they go in the extractor. The freezing kills the shb, wax moths, and other undesirables. The sealing in plastic keeps new ones out.
     
  8. charmd2

    charmd2 New Member

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    Hmmmm.. my poor wifey should um.. go cook me something and clean up after them darn kids.. well you asked. And if I were to replace Dustin with a wife I bet all he!! Would break loose around here. Unless she cooked and cleaned then maybe we would keep her. Lol..

    On a more serious note, I would question why "I" chose to get so large in short amount of time. Either I have a serious hoarding issue or I really had no clue 100 hives were harder to manage than 3. If the first is the issue the poor bees will eventually fall into a pitiful condition and die.

    Hopefully the second would be the case. If reasonably I was spending way to much time away from home I would evaluate time stratagies. Could I work more effeciently? Could I find better out yards capable of supporting 50 at a time? Could I con wife and kids into assisting with funner tasks? Should I find an assistant?vv

    If none of those are applicable then I would advertise on craigslist and unload some of the hives down to a more managable number. (I would also suggest wifey dearest to get a hobby of her own so I could pursue mine easier).
     
  9. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    if the person in question was really dedicated to the bees... obsessed to the point of never going back they would get another 100 hives, divorce their spousal unit, send the kids to the orphanage and tell the boss to shove it. then they should have more than adequate time to tend to girls as they have become accustom to being cared for. :Dancing:
     
  10. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Good post. I think I'll forward it....................To Miz. Tecumseh
     
  11. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    go right ahead Iddee. fortunately for me Mizz Tecumseh loves this bee stuff and I need not explain to her about obsessions. for about a dime I could get here to quit her job (tell her boss to shove it and given the current political climate deliver the message with relish) and come along with me for the fun.
     
  12. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    a river rat snip..
    you have bee yards spread around 2 counties with each out yard having only 5 hives since honey production averages is low in your area and 5 is about all a yard will suport.

    tecumseh:
    prima facia evidence that what ever place you are located will NEVER support commercial honey production.

    without something else in the business plan that I just don't see right now this place (or person) will never make the jump to commercial status.