Package Installed - Now what???

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by volt, May 14, 2013.

  1. volt

    volt New Member

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    On Sunday I installed my first package of bees. It went better than I expected and the package looked good -from what my novice eye could see. I've been feeding the bees and have managed to keep the syrup warm by taping a hand warmer to the bottle and covering it with a sock. Looks silly but I leave for work early and was worried the temp. would drop below 50 in a hurry.

    So what's next? When should I peek in to see if the queen has been released? I removed the cork and place her between a few frames. Dumped a bunch of bees on her and the rest to the side and have not been back in yet. Is Wed. too soon?
     
  2. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Some say 3 days. Most say 4 days. I wait 7 days. It's your choice.
     

  3. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    as Iddee suggest there is no magical time line here. I myself like to first look early to make certain the queen has gotten out of the introduction cage and then to look back again several days later to check and see how she is laying.
     
  4. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    You place your order for a second package.
    ​ It's always best to have a minimum of two hives. In case something goes wrong with one, the second serves as an aid in getting back on the road. With only one, any serious mis-step can put you completely out of business.
     
  5. volt

    volt New Member

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    I took a peek yesterday. The queen has been released, I removed her cage and the few bees inside. Moved the frames to the center and closed it up. I didn't bother them anymore than that but plan to go back in sometime next week to make sure she is laying. They are taking sugar water well, bringing in pollen, and by all looks there is a healthy bee population. I of course have NO clue what I'm look at but it looks good to me :)
     
  6. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    That sounds like a good plan Volt.
    Meanwhile, do more reading about beekeeping, since you seem pretty unsure from your first post in this thread. Also, go to Google Image and look for images of honeybee eggs, larvae, drone cells, worker cells, etc...so you'll recognize what you are seeing or looking for when you next go in. :)
     
  7. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Volt, give heed to her--Omie always comes up with good practical advice.
     
  8. volt

    volt New Member

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    I did my first hive inspection today. The hive my father left here. This thing is teaming with bees .. wow. A full honey super is heavy heavy heavy. Lots of worker cells, some burr on top of the frames, I didn't make it to the bottom box as the bees were bombing my head like crazy and I didn't want to get them too worked up before my boat guy shows up to get it spring ready.

    I removed the excluder. Not sure if that was the right thing to do or not. Two full med. brood boxes, the top box filled with honey, and another box 95% drawn out with about 20% filled with honey. I also put another box on top with empty frames. Do you think she'll crawl all the way up to lay?
     
  9. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    They will move honey up to give her room to lay down below.
     
  10. volt

    volt New Member

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    Thanks! Appreciate all the help.
     
  11. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    A super filled with honey should be as effective as an excluder.
     
  12. volt

    volt New Member

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    A quick update on my two hives: Took a peek inside my new hive on Tuesday. The bees are fast at work drawing comb and the queen is lying eggs. I'd say about 50% of the box is drawn so I'll inspect on Sunday or Monday and see if I need to add a new box. Maybe that's too early but I'm curious.

    On my established hive I decided as I was sitting in my office wasting time watching fat bee man videos that I need to checkerboard the frames to prevent swarming :) I promptly drove home, threw on my jacket and whatever gloves were lying around and got the bees worked up. Three stings later and only checkerboarding with two frames and squashing bees in my haste to avoid getting stung more I finished. Lesson learned: do a better job lighting the smoker, move slow, suit up better, and stop being an idiot :)

    The good news is things are really starting to bloom here so I'm guessing we'll be in a "flow" soon. I'm enthralled by these insects and have wasted more time that I would have thought researching and trying to learn - if only I would show my business the same commitment!
     
  13. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    Learning about bees and watching Dons videos is NOT a waste of time. Congratulations, you're officially hooked, but I'm sorry to tell you that there is no 12 step program for this. "Hi, I'm volt, and I'm a bee addict. " :lol:
     
  14. Lazarus4

    Lazarus4 New Member

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    Hi
    I am new to this so hang in there with me. Like Volt I installed my packages a week ago. Made the syrup for all 3 hives. I went out and checked them this morning. All three hives are busy drawing out the comb and making the honey. In one hive I spotted the queen but not in the others. I didn't notice any brood. Is it too early for her to be laying eggs or maybe I missed them? Thanks for any help that you may give me. :) Laz
     
  15. gunsmith

    gunsmith New Member

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    Lazarus4:
    Welcome to our friendly little part of the bee world. If you get a chance go to the introductions thread and say hi.
     
  16. efmesch

    efmesch Active Member

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    Welcome to the forum Laz. :hi:A first posst is always an event. We celebrate your arrival.
    I'm in kind of a rush now so I won't answer your real questions, only point out that "honey" made from sugar syrup fed to the bees can't really be called honey. But soon enough they should get strong enough to do some collecting of real nectar. If things go well for you, you might be able to harvest a small amount of honey this year---but keep in mind that the real hone ycrop comes from hives that have built up strength the previous year. You'll get there. :grin:
     
  17. volt

    volt New Member

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    Laz, I used black foundation in my brood boxes so it was easier to see the eggs. They were almost a milky white so I imagine against wax or white foundation super tough to see.
     
  18. Lazarus4

    Lazarus4 New Member

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  19. riverbee

    riverbee Active Member

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    "Hi
    I am new to this so hang in there with me. Like Volt I installed my packages a week ago. Made the syrup for all 3 hives. I went out and checked them this morning. All three hives are busy drawing out the comb and making the honey. In one hive I spotted the queen but not in the others. I didn't notice any brood. Is it too early for her to be laying eggs or maybe I missed them? Thanks for any help that you may give me. :smile: Laz"

    hi laz, welcome to the forum!!! :wave: like gunsmith said, when you get a chance introduce yourself!
    what ef said about the 'honey' and what volt said about black foundation, it does help to see eggs. i suspect you missed the eggs, and with package bees, give the queens a little more time.

    it would really help us and you,(to answer questions), for you to describe or give a little more detail on what your setup is for these hives? are they in deeps, or mediums, or combination thereof? are you using all foundation? or do you have some drawn comb mixed with foundation? also what breed of bees were your packages?

    where are you in sw iowa?
    again WELCOME! and keep on posting, don't be shy, and don't be shy to start a thread to ask questions!
    :grin:
     
  20. Lazarus4

    Lazarus4 New Member

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    Hi
    Thanks for the replies. I am in Council Bluffs, Iowa out in the country. My hives are what I call the basic set ups. 2 boxes with frames inside. I think the frames are something like 9 1/2" tall. Some of the foundation is black and some is yellow. I ordered my bees back in Feb and they were on a trailer coming from Cali to Ia when they got stuck in 18" of snow in Wyoming. The driver turned up the heat on them and cooked 2200 packages. That's right 2200 packages of crispy bees. People in this area scrambled for bees and I picked mine up a week ago. The bees are banded Italian, very pretty and peacefull. This is my first time with bees and I am excited about it. When I got them home I sprayed them and the frames a little with a mixture of sugar water and Bee healthy and then left them alone.

    When I checked them 3 days ago they were all ready working on the comb so it will be new comb, so I figure that honey production wont be all that much this year and that's OK so long as the garden and small fruits get pollinated. I will have to wait for next year to get the honey. I found 1 Queen for sure and figured that I missed the other 2. About 1/3 of the frames have comb on them so I guess that its too yearly to add supers? Any help that you can give me will be welcomed.

    I am taking a trip in June to Wake Forest N.C. I 29,70,64 anybody along that route? :)