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2017 Bee hive swarm information, history, lessons, successes, etc.

Discussion in 'Bee Swarms, Bee Behavior, & Bee Queens' started by soarwitheagles, Jan 29, 2017.

  1. Mar 5, 2017
    babsbag

    babsbag Herd Master

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    I saw some on Craigslist a few months back from Bennett Apiaries; he had some winter nucs. Unfortunately someone snatched them before I did and he said that he doesn't know of any nucs until after Almonds. I have a reservation of two nucs from Bourbon Hill Bees in Nevada City. I sent him two cardboard nuc boxes so I can just make a day trip to get them when they are ready. I got my bees from him last year and they did really well...until the robbing and wasps.

    Time to put out the wasp traps here pretty soon.

    Do you get the American Bee Journal? There was a great article in there last month by Randy Oliver on a new Varroa treatment using Oxalic acid and food grade glycerin. Looked easy and safe.
     
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  2. Mar 8, 2017
    Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Loving the herd life

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    soar, question for you. Do you leave the robber screens on all winter? I put mine on in the fall when I noticed some robbing. I removed the entrance reducer when I put them on. I left the one bee opening on the top open and the bees had figured out how to get in/out. I thought maybe it would help on the wax moth front. (which it did)

    However, upon inspection and removal of the screens, there were a lot of dead bees piled up at the screen. I'm just wondering if I should have pulled them before winter. This was my first year using robbing screens. The population seems to be lower than in past years. I put the entrance reducers back in and since we were having a storm, gave them a chunk of pollen patty to help with brood. I saw evidence of a queen in Hive #1, saw the queen in #2 and did not pull frames in #3 but saw there are still some bees in there (thought I'd lose this one over winter) There is still plenty of honey in the hives, and they are bringing in nectar from the manzanita. But I didn't see any pollen, so that is why I gave them another chunk of patty.

    I'm going to check them again next week and see how they are coming along.
     
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  3. Mar 8, 2017
    babsbag

    babsbag Herd Master

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    I get my bees on 3/18. They should be here in time for apples and blackberries to bloom. So glad for that.
     
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  4. Mar 8, 2017
    Hens and Roos

    Hens and Roos Herd Master

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    Hope they do well for you!
     
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  5. Mar 8, 2017
    babsbag

    babsbag Herd Master

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    I would just like to keep them alive through one winter. Evidently that is asking a lot.
     
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  6. Mar 9, 2017
    Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Loving the herd life

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    Yay!!!!!!
     
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  7. Mar 9, 2017
    soarwitheagles

    soarwitheagles Loving the herd life

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    Happy Chooks,

    I would say very good call on the pollen patties if you did not see any pollen in the hive...queens will not lay eggs until they are certain there is pollen.

    I used the robber screens last summer because some of my nucs were getting robbed. It was actually a very bad choice because my queens were still virgins when I installed the robber screens...and the screens made it incredibly difficult for the queens to find their way back into the hives.

    Entrance reducers work best for us. I thought I would try to robber screens last year for the first time, but was unhappy with them under the circumstances.

    Personally, I would not leave robber screens on all winter. We had some problems with mice this winter...and the best solution for this is 1/2 inch hardware screen. During the coldest parts of winter, our bees seldom fly.

    Hope this helps!

    Yeah!

    Me tooooooo!

    Please set your goals higher dear friend!

    WooooHoooo!
     
  8. Mar 10, 2017
    babsbag

    babsbag Herd Master

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    I really would be happy with just that for starters. The bees are more for my garden and trees than they are for the honey so I am ok with them being happy and healthy for the first year. I have a few goals this year though.

    1. No swarms.
    2. No robbing
    3. No wasps
    4. Re-queen in July
    5. Watch the mite count.

    @soarwitheagles or @Happy Chooks Do you do the sugar roll to count mites? If so, how do you know how many bees you are putting in the jar? I am thinking that sinse these nucs are splits fresh from the Almond orchards that I might treat for mites now as you never know what they picked up on their "job site".
     
  9. Mar 10, 2017
    Happy Chooks

    Happy Chooks Loving the herd life

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    I do not do sugar rolls, haven't really needed to. I treat for mites in the fall and since I have a SBB, I can see how many mites are dropping. There is enough of a drop to treat every year, so I just do that. You can also look for K wing on the bees during inspections. This would show a severe mite problem though. I haven't seen it in my hives.
     
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  10. Mar 11, 2017
    CLSranch

    CLSranch Ridin' The Range

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    Sorry to here that babs. Hopefully you can get one hive in time from eagles info.
     
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