Norm's Australian Packages

Discussion in 'Bees' started by PerryBee, Apr 9, 2013.

  1. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Well, I finally got the experience of hiving packages. Never done it before but watched enough videos to know how it's done.
    Norm is a keeper that I have been lending a hand to here. I believe he turned 80 a few weeks ago. Just shows ya there's hope for us all. :wink:
    He had a tough winter and to help make up some losses he bought 3 packages of bees from Australia.
    There are 4 lbs of bees in each package and for an extra $15 they come with 2 queens.
    Norm had boxes ready so I went and helped hive them.
    We shook 1/2 of each package (2 lbs) in each box and added a queen. Some of the keeps opted to save the $15 and hived the whole package with just 1 queen and will split in a months time. The bees were real docile, no fuss at all. No syrup left in the jugs in the packages. The one thing that really struck me was how small the bees were!
    It will be interesting which way works out best.
    Norm's packages 001.jpg Norm's packages 002.jpg
     
  2. Lburou

    Lburou Member

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    Interesting Perry! How many dead bees did ou see in each package? How long did the shipping take? Live bees to Canada from Australia is a modern miracle, its easy to loose perspective on how far it actually is. :)
     

  3. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Amazingly enough Lee, hardly a dead bee in the packages. Maybe a dozen in each one.
     
  4. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    perry, wasn't it complete joy to hive a package of bees....yes!?......:thumbsup::grin:
     
  5. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    It actually was. :thumbsup:
    I've always felt like I had missed something by never having done packages before. I feel like I kinda made up for that today.
    I am hopeful for Norm that all goes well.
     
  6. Papakeith

    Papakeith New Member

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    Australia is a long way off from you. Is there no place closer?
     
  7. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    I don't think so. I believe that there might be some coming from New Zealand as well.
     
  8. ablanton

    ablanton New Member

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    I have hived four packages, now, and I love it! One last Spring, two this Spring with my boys, and one this Spring with a friend. It is just thrilling to have that cloud of bees zooming around checking things (including me) out!

    My friends must have this image of killer bees in their heads. They are always amazed when they watch from a distance or see the video of us out there with no veils or jackets and nobody getting eaten up.
     
  9. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    Congratulations Perry and Norn.
    Bees sent air freight from Australia to Canada, the time is less than trucking packages of bees from California to the northern BC and Alberta that happened every spring for years before the border was closed from importing bees from the USA to Canada. BY the time the packages arrived we would shake the bees into the super push the frames together and pull the cork in the cage end and let the queen walk down between the frames to meet the bees. The queen had been in the package for at least 3 days before they arrived to us.
    The transportation of bees that impresses me is when the settlers brought bee hives to the new world in the 1600's in wind powered sailing ships. They were not using Langstroth's with screaned entrances and ventilated tops. these were skep or log hives.
     
  10. blueblood

    blueblood New Member

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    That's cool Perry!

    Apis, your thread caused me to spin away and search for journals of those folks that sailed to North America with bees. I will search more later but found this article about them that was very interesting. I had never heard that Native Indians referred to honey bees as, "white man's flies." Ha! http://www.orsba.org/htdocs/download/Honey%20Bees%20Across%20America.html
     
  11. ApisBees

    ApisBees Active Member

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    Interesting reading Dave Thanks for the link.
    So it took 2 1/2 to 3 months to get the bees from England to the USAon a ship. Another 200 hundred years to get them established in California, but now move them across the country in as little as 3 days 2 times per year.