Hi from western NY

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by Bhodi, Aug 31, 2009.

  1. Bhodi

    Bhodi New Member

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    Hello!

    This is my second year keeping bees and having lots of fun with it! I have two colonies and just recently picked up a new, local raised queen I have in a nuc. I'm looking to add a couple more colonies next spring. I'm here now because I'm looking for ideas to help get through winter.

    Bhodi
     
  2. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    Welcome to the site Bhodi.

    You mentioned just enough for a person like myself to write a book in reply. :D

    Hope you ask many questions and also share your experiences.
     

  3. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Welcome to the site.

    As far as getting them through the winter just make sure there are plenty of bees to cover the frames and enough honey for them. How much honey you ask?? For you area I could not tell you since I live farther south of you. A deep and shallow will take me through the winter and you will need more for sure.

    G3
     
  4. Charles

    Charles New Member

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    Welcome to the board Bhodi! Write up a post in beekeeping 101 and give us some more info on your current hives. We'll do our best to help ;)
     
  5. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Howdy. Howdy. Glad you came. Pull up a chair and sit fer a spell.
     
  6. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

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    Bhodi,
    Where in Western NY are you from?
    You are in for an experience, buying a queen this late in the year and trying to get it through the winter.
    If you have another full sized colony of bees, I'd recommend trying to overwinter your queen in a nuc sized colony on top of the stronger more developed colony.
    You might want to do this in a medium depth super, if you have one.
    But since you said that your new queen is in a nuc, I assume you mean a five frame sized box? Maybe you could transfer the nuc into a ten frame deep and put that above your strongest colony w/ a double screen in between.
    A double screen is basically a wooden frame the same size as a wooden bound excluder, except it has window screen on both sides. This allows the warmth of the lower colony to raise up to the upper colony so it doesn't have to work so hard at keeping itself warm enough. This allows a smaller colony, one of fewer bees, to make it trough the winter.

    Are you a member of a local beekeeping club or association?
    What about the State Association, Empire State Honey Producers Association?
    You can find info about a local association at the statewide association website, eshpa.org.

    Welcome aboard. Hope to meet you some day.
     
  7. Bhodi

    Bhodi New Member

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    I like the sound of this! They are in a five-frame nuc right now, but I do have enough extra stuff to put them in a 10-frame deep. If I can get the numbers and stores built up enough, this may be the way to go.

    I need to look at this double screen and how to put one together. How "tall" are they? And are they just a frame with aluminum window screen on both sides?

    Is it possible to feed both colonies while they are stacked up if they need it in the late winter?

    When stacked, would the nuc then use an upper entrance? An upper entrance that also provides sufficient ventillation?
     
  8. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    bhodi writes:
    I need to look at this double screen and how to put one together. How "tall" are they? And are they just a frame with aluminum window screen on both sides?

    tecumseh:
    I think you've got it. think a queen excluder with door screen placed on both sides.

    feeding both???? you might wish to consider an approach I named/tagged 'the mountain camp' emergency winter ration. mountain camp is a beekeeper in the southeast corner of NY up near the catskill mountains. it is basicall adding a shallow box above the cluster(s) with newspaper and then you add dry suger... this should add a bit of stores plus act to absorb excess moisture.

    entrances at the top??? alway.... for ventilation for both units plus an entry exit for the top nuc.

    there are a number of modification and purposes for stacking hives as sqkcrk has described. I do some here although not for the same purpose and modified just a bit. I like to place my entrace on the opposite side of the stack... you on the other hand might not wish to turn an entrance north if the bottom hive's entrance was turned south.
     
  9. Bhodi

    Bhodi New Member

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    Thanks for the replies here! Most helpful!
    I found this drawing, but it seems to be way more than I need. I have both window screen and 1/8 HW cloth here.

    That sounds easy enough to do. I'm also thinking of making up some fondant and feeding with the Bjorn Method :D

    This is some "introduction", huh?
     
  10. sqkcrk

    sqkcrk New Member

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    tecumseh's mountain camp method of feeding sugar is basically a good one, but I think that an empty shallow super is too much air space. I recommend something shorter, like a feeder rim. Which is basically a wooden frame, the same dimensions as a super, but only an inch and a half or two inches tall. I have used these, especially in wintering bees in SC, for years. They do extend the life of a colony that is short on stores. And it puts their food right where they need it. Above them.

    I've been doing this for more than 15 years and never called it by any name. It is known amongst many beesource folk and alumni because mountain camp suggested it to someone who needed a way to feed their bees before spring came. If it needs to be called anything, The Mountain Camp Method is as good a name as any. Though the originator's name is lost to history. I learned it from Jon McDonald, so it could be called the McDonald Method.
     
  11. Bhodi

    Bhodi New Member

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    Thanks for the help with this! I think I've got a plan in order now. I hope it's a decent one :?

    This afternoon I put together a double screen board with an entrance on the side, back about two inches from the front. Tomorrow I want to get them moved into a 10-frame deep and start feeding. I also made a follower board to expand their space as needed and also provide some insulation to the west.

    I've got a couple of shims I'll put above each colony for feeding, sugar or fondant.

    I'll try to get some pics up later.