this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next season)1

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by adamant, Dec 14, 2011.

  1. adamant

    adamant Member

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    help me with a plan for next season (2012) i am bee keeper that has bees since June 2011. this is my inventory...
    1. 9 active hives that i bought this and July that consists of 2 deeps (brood chamber and upper box that are set up with 9 frames each.
    2. 1 hive as the same configuration as above but lost after i treated for mites.. (in storage)
    3. 22 9 frame shallow boxes that i bought at a auction and added a nailed on spacer that made them into all mediums.
    4. i made up 200 medium frames with plastic foundations for the 22 boxes.
    5. 40 5 frame deep nucs that i made up with frames and plastic foundation. (i plan on using some if most as swarm traps)

    as for extraction equipment i have all maxant. extractor (1400 pl), bottling tank (600-3) and a un capping tank (mutt) and a un capping plane..

    marketing my honey: i have a farmers market the is open for 12 months and has a large traffic flow..
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    thats what i have.. with that inventory, how can i configure this to be a successful next season.. what would you do with this?
    thank you
     
  2. rast

    rast New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    Just my first thoughts would be to keep the 9 active hives alive through your winter. When spring is on the horizon, then I would consider some for splits, the 5 frame nucs, and super the others for honey. Being a first year beek, don't overload your self. Sounds like you need some more deeps if you really want to grow that fast.
     

  3. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    I want to make honey with 10 hives.
    I want to make honey with 20+ hives.
    I want to sell nucs.
    I want to raise and sell queens.
    I want to see how many hives I can amass.

    Number the above, with 1 being the most wanted.
     
  4. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    You have taken a huge first step for a first year keep. I would be tempted to agree with rast, and not overload yourself. If all goes well, expansion will take care of itself.
    Do you the equipment for extracting? Have you a market for your honey? Even 9 hives can produce a sizable amount of honey in a good year. Honey has to be stored until sold (Thank heavens I never took any pictures of the 5 gallon pails of honey stacked in the dining room to remind my wife).
    It sounds like you have the woodenware in place, your questions on management are a good next step.
     
  5. adamant

    adamant Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    thank you
    as for extraction equipment i have all maxant. extractor (1400 pl), bottling tank (600-3) and a un capping tank (mutt) and a un capping plane..

    marketing my honey: i have a farmers market the is open for 12 months and has a large traffic flow..
     
  6. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    adamant said:
    "thank you
    as for extraction equipment i have all maxant. extractor (1400 pl), bottling tank (600-3) and a un capping tank (mutt) and a un capping plane..

    marketing my honey: i have a farmers market the is open for 12 months and has a large traffic flow"

    Maxant equipment, you can never go wrong there.
    Marketing covered.
    You are well on your way :thumbsup:
     
  7. Zookeep

    Zookeep Active Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    lol its all junk just send it to me Ill get rid of it all for you :D :rolling: :rotfl: sounds to me like your right on track with what your doing, good luck with it all .
     
  8. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    to add to your thinking... you need to find some location where clean up is possible for extraction. ideally I don't suggest folks attempt this in their kitchen (a garage maybe) since it is always extremely messy. even if you might think you are a neat freak extraction will be very messy.

    my thinking goes this way.... with a good season and even modest hive numbers a honey crop is just part of the inevitable plan. since I don't really mess with treating for varroa the first thing I plan for is the replacement of hive that 'I think' might die that year from vorroa (my roughly calculated number is 1/3*) then I add to this any splits for sale or increase that I wish to make. once the hives are set aside for splitting and increase then the remainder of hives are allocated for capturing a honey crop if there is one.

    *1/3 might be a slightly high number for this location where winter losses are not so great.

    ps... michael palmer several years ago encourage me to consider late season splits as a means to increase numbers and reduce early season labor constraints. if you also want to increase your numbers this might be something for you to consider.
     
  9. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    Most first and second year beekeepers (myself included here) are learning and we tend to make mistakes no matter how much we read and learn. It is far less catastrophic to make mistakes on 6 hives than on 50. By your third year, you'll have had some good experience making splits, producing nucs and queens, managing pests and swarms, extracting honey, and you will make far fewer errors that could easily have been prevented with a year's experience under your belt.
    I suggest that you use half of your next Spring's surviving hives to make Spring splits and nucs, and the other half to try to get a good Spring honey harvest from. With 9 full hives going into winter now you are likely to have at least 4 survivors, 6-8 if you are lucky.

    If you have a strong hive you choose to split in the Spring, you can either split it right in half, OR you can actually make several nucs off it during the late Spring and early summer and still have time to let those nucs grow enough to survive their own first winter by Fall- especially since you have so much ready equipment on hand already. Remember to leave plenty of honey for the bees to eat over winter- don't be too greedy in the Fall!

    You may want to read up a little more about using 9 frames in your brood deeps though, and about using spacers- you might not want to put 9 frames of undrawn foundation in a 10 frame box.
     
  10. Marbees

    Marbees Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    Adamant, you asked for advice, and they advised you well, but it's you deciding your next step.
    Some people like to grow slowly, you are not one of them.
    Whatever number of colonies you end up with, and I don't see you with less than 20, make sure you have enough resources (time and money)to fulfill your obligations. Both, money and time equally important.
    Speaking from experience. First year reading, second year 5 colonies, third year 30 colonies.
    If overwintering is any good, hope to hit 50 next year, and make as much honey as possible.
    It takes good planning and lots of time to do all the steps properly without compromising quality.
    Best wishes.
     
  11. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    marsbee writes:
    Speaking from experience. First year reading, second year 5 colonies, third year 30 colonies.

    tecumseh:
    and that sounds like a plan and nicely stated? a plan is a good item to write down just to keep a person on the proper path. really some excellent advice above from both marsbees (money and time) and omie (splits and winter success).

    of course under marsbees plan you will invariable get the line every beekeeper must endure from their significant other which is 'when are you going to have enough'.
     
  12. adamant

    adamant Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    thank you all for your replies. before i posted this post my plan was to use all those shallows that i made into mediums as honey supers for my existing hives. use some of the nucs for splits from the hives that are doing well in the spring. make up some deep and bottom boards for needed hives of those bees i split into nucs early on..
     
  13. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    adamant writes:
    make up some deep and bottom boards.

    tecumseh:
    it seems to me that almost invariable in you have number of hives that you do need some extra tops and bottoms on hand. since I use migratory type tops this one item is also 'used up' a bit faster than any other piece of bee furniture I have on hand.

    in the traditional case winter time was the time of the year for bee keeper to build and repair equipment getting everything ready for the spring time panic. if your mind is made up to expand I would suggest building a few more of everything than you think you will need come spring time. come the peak of the season it is better to have a few too many than to run short.

    good luck...
     
  14. Zookeep

    Zookeep Active Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    Funny how it works out, you plan things so you think you needed 1 but in the end you needed 2, but if it goes perfect just like you planned (ya like that ever happens :lol: ) you actually needed 4, Im not even trying to expand right now and not going to do splits in the spring, but hives do what they want and you end up with more hives and the cut-out and trap out calls keep coming in (like I could turn down a paid to remove full hive :lol: ) in the end the best advice, if your hooked on bees like I am order in bulk.
     
  15. PerryBee

    PerryBee New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    Zookeep wrote:
    " in the end the best advice, if your hooked on bees like I am order in bulk."

    Now that is some good advice! :mrgreen:
     
  16. brendantm130

    brendantm130 New Member

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    Re: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next seas

    I didn't have any kind of plan coming out of my first winter this year, other than see how many of my 6 hives survived (five). Then, I decided to split my weakest hive up, put new queens in, and make winter Nucs, i.e. Michael Palmer. What I need up with was one absolute booming hive that I wasn't prepared for, one weak hive that wasn't even big enough for the 4 queen I bought to split, and everything in between.

    So now my advice, get labels for your planned on honey sales, or you may procrastinate, not get to the farmers market, then the honey starts to crystalize, thus not looking as good to buyers.