How is everyone?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by arkiebee, Jan 24, 2011.

  1. arkiebee

    arkiebee New Member

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    Well it's taking me a moment to navigate around this new website - you guys have totally reworked everything. I hate to admit that I haven't read much about the bee world lately - can't you tell? Lot of things have been going on, and I thought the other day that I need to see what my bee friends are doing.

    We have had COLD weather here in northern Arkansas, but one day last week, the temps got to the high 50s and I went out and all my hives were buzzing. I have not put any feed on them at all - they couldn't get to it anyway because they would have been in a cluster, but I think I will put sugar on them if we get a day in the 60s. I thought about just straight sugar for now - do I just spray water on it as I put it on the newspaper? I know it's too early for 1:1 - syrup would freeze anyway!

    I have 10 hives still, and I need to move one of them. When do you think I should move it? I would like to move it now while the temp is too cold for the bees to come out because I am afraid if they do, some will go back to the old hive location. But I am afraid too because I am afraid I would break the cluster and they would freeze for sure.

    I also will probably split some of them and thought about trying a new queen? I have Russians, Italians, & Carnolian. Any suggestions and "who" to buy from? because I probably need to order them pretty soon.

    Well I have questioned you to death as usual - hope everyone out there has had a good holiday and ready to start a new bee season.
    Sandra
     
  2. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    For the dry sugar there is no water spraying needed. Some will spray a little water on the pile so that it will crust over just a little to prevent it from falling.

    How far are you moving your hive? across the yard or across town? If I was going to move a hive in these temps just be extra careful of bumping or jarring it real hard, the combs could break. Would not worry too much about breaking the cluster, a day in the low 50's and they will be flying a little anyway.

    As far as queens go, well you have asked a bunch of beeks and you will get a bunch times two different answers.
     

  3. Bitty Bee

    Bitty Bee New Member

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    Isn't the new arrangement nice? I like it.
    I'm glad to hear that all your hives are buzzing!


    I would move them in warmer temps since, they need to re-orient in order to find their new location anyway. But, like G3 said, you could move it now if you want just be careful. After you move it, put a little bit of leaves or grass on the porch that they can push out of their way. It will make them do an orientation flight, so they won't get lost.

    I would split some this spring, but that's just me. The more hives the better!
    Are you trying a new Queen as an experiment type thing or because you are looking for a certain type of genetics?
     
  4. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    Arkiebee good to see ya. You drove right into a construction zone and we didnt even put up barricades. :yahoo: I guess you can say the forum is a work in progress. Hats off for the hard work Charles :hi: Anyhow the queen question. (Rat pulls out his soap box again for the 2nd time tonight on queens) My belief is the best person to buy queens from is you yourself. Pick a hive based on what traits you are looking for. Do you have a hive that over wintered well. Maybee built up fast and produced a lot of honey. Are you looking for bees gentle to work. How about hygenic and shows signs of mite resistance. If you have a hive that has a few of the traits you are looking for. Thats the one to make a split from and let them make there own queen. The best part is take the 40 bucks or more you would have spent buying someone else dinner by buying there queens and treat yourself to a night out.
     
  5. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    shove that soap box back under your bed Rat. OBVIOUSLY the best place to buy a queen is from me. well perhaps not alway me!

    I would suggest to ya' arkie that the choice of queen may be a bit more complex than the Rat would suggest. any number of things may enter into this equation. making a choice for a 'queen mother' from a small number of hive can lead to it own problems.... inbreeding being the most evident. this choice (as described) would be a bit like laying your last $20 bill on the roulette table at Vegas and telling the dealer to spin the wheel.

    although I sell queens I also buy queens with some end game in mind. for example a few years ago I decide to end my 'habit' of late fall and early spring treatment of terramycin as a preventative for foul brood. so for about two spring seasons I purchased, in some significant quantity, queen cells from one of the folks in the minnesota hygienic program.

    I find the absolutely best time to move hive is at about 50 degrees. they are easy to close up without leaving any stragglers and there is little possibility of injuring the hive from either cold or heat. as a general operational rule I would rather move bees in fairly cool temperature than in very hot weather. it is simply easier to kill a hive via over heating than over chilling.

    ps... I don't think THE RATS take is so absolutely wrong here but if you do decide to rear your own queen follow one of the established methods of queen rearing. no matter if you employ a grafting or non grafting method just the practice of generating your own queen will make you a better beekeeper. your stated number of hives (10) represents about the minimum bee resources for anyone wishing to begin rearing a few of their own queens.
     
  6. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    (Darn it "rat kicking his foot with his head hung low" do I really have to put up my soap box tec)good advise tec you brought up some good points :thumbsup: This is what I like about this forum. We have a diverse group of people from differnet areas of beekeeping that offer there advise from there area of expertise. Leaving one's self to sort out what would work for them and apply it. :drinks:
     
  7. Walt B

    Walt B New Member

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    OK, now I'm confused...not an entirely unusual state.

    I attended a beekeeping class last spring and was told that a queen will fly 5 miles to mate...doesn't matter if you flood the area with drones, she does what she does and scouts out new talent.

    So, why the 10 hives minimum for raising queens?

    Could I have been misinformed? :eek:

    Walt
     
  8. arkiebee

    arkiebee New Member

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    I may just try raising my own queen or queens? I have split in order to avoid a swarm and I have never had any luck at that! Everyone I split last year, swarmed anyway. I have never medicated my bees, and they are healthy, and I have hardly seen a mite, but I know they must have some. I am lucky in that the closest bees are miles away, but we do have a few bee trees around with wild bees and they have been here a long time. So I may just give it a try from my most productive hives - thanks for the advise! So I still may buy some too.

    The weather should be making a bit of a turn here in a few weeks, so I will try to get that hive moved. It is about 4 - 500 feet, and it is the old location. I moved my hives last year, and sure enough, I had a bunch of bees go back to the old home place so that is why I have a lonesome hive by itself. I need to get it moved because we had to put a small fence around it because our horses and cattle knocked it over THREE times last summer. And it is NO fun putting it back together again!

    It looks like just maybe I can put some sugar on them this weekend....maybe - it's suppose to be 50ish - so we'll see. My hives had lots of honey last fall, I just don't want them to starve before early spring.

    You guys are great - always such a joy chatting with you.