Newbee in West Central Indiana

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by "Doc", Jul 27, 2012.

  1. "Doc"

    "Doc" New Member

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    Hi everyone,
    I'm new to beekeeping. I set up my 1st hive from package bees on April 29th. It has grown to 2 hive bodies + 1 super (which I just added this week). We are in extreme drought conditions here in West Central Indiana & I have been very worried about my new bees. I have provided them a water source (chicken waterer) near the hive entrance & up until late last week I had been feeding them 1:1 sugar water in a boardman feeder every 2-4 days. I was told by the person I got the hive & bees from to quit feeding them when I added the super. The hive is located in a grassy area just east of my woods where normally there would be wild black raspberries, blackberries, multiflora rose, clover and numerous other wild blooming plants. We have not had a significant rain in over a month and it is so dry here that even the weeds are dying. I guess I'm mainly looking for insight/input in what I need to provide these bees to ensure that they survive now & are ready for the winter (if & when winter comes).

    Thanks in advance,

    Crystal Chapple
     
  2. Zeevah

    Zeevah New Member

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    Hi "Doc" and welcome to the forum! I know you'll get a lot of great info here.

    My weather conditions are opposite of yours, so it would be better for someone on the forum from your area to advise you. However, I would be concerned about using an boardman feeder during a drought/dearth as that can definitely invite robbing!

    Welcome! :)
     

  3. BoilerJim

    BoilerJim New Member

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    Welcome Doc! I'm your neighbor over in Lafayette, IN. Your hive seller was correct in saying to quit feeding when you put the super on as you don't want sugar water mixed in with your honey. :wink:

    There are a few of us in your area so feel free to ask questions. What we locals lack in knowledge and experience is more than made up by the friendly experienced (some older ) folks on this forum........some even from Canada :eek:ldtimer: LOL no offense Perry........I love you man!
     
  4. HisPalette

    HisPalette New Member

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    Welcome, Doc... this is a great forum! You will find lots of insight and input here. We are in our second season beekeeping. We have 6 hives, which have taught us a lot this year. Started with one and it made the winter over 2011 to 12, We just helped by feeding, as you are< when they need it. We didn't take a drop of honey off the first year...just a taste in the beeyard, but that was what they required with a dry summer last year. And we did not encounter any pest issues (we are using natural pest management methods). They didn't swarm so numbers going in were also good. We can only do the best we can do by the book, and beyond and hope for the best! Lots of hopes wishes and prayers...and talking to a wooden box all winter...But when you see the first bees fly in the spring...amazing!
     
  5. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Well, I guess that all depends on which you were referring to me as Jim, Canadian :yahoo: or older! :ranting:

    :lol: :rolling: :rotfl:
     
  6. Americasbeekeeper

    Americasbeekeeper New Member

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  7. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Welcome to the forum "Doc" :hi:
     
  8. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    Welcome to the forum neighbor. Same conditions here but no worries...my bees are finding what they need somewhere because things are looking great..
     
  9. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    Welcome Doc, you came to the right place:hi:
     
  10. kebee

    kebee Active Member

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    Welcome Doc, glad you found us, a great forums for the bekeep.

    kebee
     
  11. Slowmodem

    Slowmodem New Member

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    Welcome and enjoy your stay! :)
     
  12. BoilerJim

    BoilerJim New Member

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    I guess that all depends on which you were referring to me as Jim, Canadian :yahoo: or older!

    Sorry Perry. I was talking about being older.............AND WISER. lol
     
  13. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    Welcome Doc.:hi:
     
  14. reidi_tim

    reidi_tim New Member

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    Welcome Doc from your neighbor from the south. This is also my first year as a bekeep, and in southern Indiana we are having the same type of climate and we where towards the front of the line to be declared in exceptional drought and add to that breaking record hi temps days in a row. There is a lot of great knowledge to be found her enjoy your stay.
     
  15. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    a BIG WELCOME from the State of Texas...

    and a snip..
    I have provided them a water source (chicken waterer) near the hive entrance & up until late last week I had been feeding them 1:1 sugar water in a boardman feeder every 2-4 days. I was told by the person I got the hive & bees from to quit feeding them when I added the super.

    tecumseh:
    given your hive is new and your conditions and the circumstance that in a drought you are quite likely not to collect enough surplus to take anything anyway I myself would not be so taken with the advice to quit feeding at any given point in time. at this point in time (first year hive and first year bee keeper) your primary purposes should be to keep the hive alive, get as much comb drawn as possible and hopefully learn something in the process.

    and good luck...
     
  16. indypartridge

    indypartridge New Member

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    Hello and Welcome!

    Most of us Indiana beekeepers are in the same boat regarding drought. Some of us are in "Extreme" drought and some only in "Severe" drought. Amazingly, in some locations, beekeepers are having record honey crops. In other locations they're having to feed.

    If you've already got two deeps drawn out, you've done well. It can't hurt to add the super for a few weeks to see if they do anything with it. There's still a chance of a late summer/fall flow of goldenrod, asters and sumac.

    As Tec noted though, it's unlikely they'll produce surplus during the drought. Keep and eye on them, and if you see dwindling stores in the two bottom boxes, then you'd better better off removing the super and return to feeding.

    Are you involved with a local club? There are quite a few beekeepers in your area - check out the West Central Club. Good place to find mentors and get connected to nearby beekeepers:
    http://www.in.gov/dnr/entomolo/files/ep-beekeeper_assoc.pdf

    Lastly, the State Beekeepers will be meeting in Danville in October - practically in your backyard. Hope to see you then!
     
  17. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm New Member

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    Welcome Doc, Some good advise from tec. Jack
     
  18. reidi_tim

    reidi_tim New Member

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    I left my shallows on top because that was where all the surplus was, bottom deeps a lot of empty comb. Will they not take the honey from the top super and use that for food??
     
  19. "Doc"

    "Doc" New Member

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    Thanks Tecumseh,
    Hive survival IS my main concern. I'm not at all opposed to continue feeding them. Would you recommend leaving the super in place and provide sugar water? Give them time & see what happens?
     
  20. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    you are welcome and...

    that is what I would do and most especially if the drought conditions continues. last year we were pretty much into the same calamity here.... at the tail end of things 'some' hives did run out of pollen so I gave a minor number pollen patties at the time of year (late summer) when I would never feed pollen stuff (downside is pollen like stuff here almost always encourages small hive beetle problem at the wrong time of year). not all needed pollen so a quick inspection to check for pollen stores in the frames is a good thing to check prior to dumping on pollen patties.

    and of course if you gets some rain and some fall bloom curtail the feeding at least a bit.

    and the best of luck to you and 'the girls'.....