I live in NW Georgia. Not quite in the corner but close enough I guess.
I started with 4 hives and equipment that I purchased from a beek that was moving and couldn't take the hives with him. This was in June of '07 so I haven't been doing this long.
I lost a hive a couple of months ago. I am pretty sure to my own ineptitude. I opened the hive to find a major infestation of Wax Moths. Yuck!! The hive had limited numbers of workers(most were older) and an uncommonly high number of drones. I think, by the clues, that I had lost the queen. As I had opened the hive and looked at a strong colony about a month and a half before that, I think I may have damaged or killed the queen when trying to medicate with Checkmite+. No blame to the product, I have never found he queen and decided I should look extra hard that visit. I probably dropped her or damaged her between frames.
This spring I will be replacing all my queens with more gentle stock anyway. It is emabarassing to see all the pics posted of folks working their hives with limited or no sting protection, when mine try to run me back into my truck or in the house screaming like a girl.
Does anyone have suggestions on how to replace the queens you can't find. I know they are there, I find eggs, just no queens. I am told that some strains of bees the queens can be as small as the workers. I am sticking to this as my reason for not being able to find the queens since this explanation is not as embarassing. I have enough trouble salvaging my manhood after running from a few stings. Also, does anyone have any recommendations on a race of bees? I really don't mind a few stings here and there, I am just tired of mean bees. I have opened my hives just to look at them then leave them for a few minutes and then come back to just watch and have 6 bees jump off the top and attack me while I was still 3 feet away. These girls gotta go!
Thanks everyone, Steve