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Author Topic: When do I begin??  (Read 4304 times)
klesage121
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« Reply #20 on: July 15, 2008, 10:09:25 PM »

I totally agree with ya Brian. With all the sites that I have come to just by doing a simple search on the net about beekeeping I have come up with conflicting statements and do and don'ts that are just all twisted around according to who's do's and don'ts your reading.  I got 2 books the handbook then the book called The backyard gardner and it pretty much follows along with the handbook with a few exceptions.  I am having to take a step back and re evaluate cause i'm just getting over whelmed.  LOL
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annette
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« Reply #21 on: July 15, 2008, 11:35:04 PM »

I started with the Beekeeping for Dummies and this book really inspired me and made me believe that I could do this.  After I finally got my bees and started learning and having some difficulties, well then, I got onto this forum and most of the answers I received were contrary to the book I had read. And contrary to a few classes I took as well. Believe me it was very confusing at first.

I think you just have to read many different ways of doing this and come up with the style that feels comfortable for you. I know an elderly beekeeping man (in his 80's) who lives about 1/2 hour away from me. He has been beekeeping for about 9 years and only has 2 hives. He doesn't do anything except place supers on top when he thinks they need more room. He never looks into the brood supers. He treats the hives with the usual standard chemicals for mites. He gets about 35 lbs of honey each summer from both hives. Not much, I think, but he is a very simple man and he is very happy going along like this. His hives probably swarm out on him every summer (he calls me to tell me a swarm has landed in his carport or on his shed - they are probably his bees) and he doesn't care or is ignorant. He is very happy to go along like this. Whenever I mention anything to him like - have you checked the brood nest to see if the queen has room to lay, he answers I didn't know you have to do this. He is so happy in his ignorance and really enjoys his beekeeping.
He only lost one hive to starvation last winter in all 9 years. Is it right or wrong how he does his beekeeping?? He has been making this work for 9 years. The only thing I am against is the chemicals he uses - you know the apistan or whatever it is called.

I have committed myself to doing this as natural as possible, without using any chemicals. I work much harder than he does. I am trying to do it right. Sometimes I think I would like to be like that elderly man and just relax more with the whole thing. I have had so many troubles with my hives and have gotten so little honey.

I am sorry for rambling, but I guess my point is there are many ways to do this beekeeping and the choice is up to each individual which route to take.  I have been unhappy with most of the beekeeping classes I took. I wish I could have learned this with a mentor right next to me who is in line with my beliefs.  It just did not happen that way. I have made the best of it and keep going on and learning from my many mistakes. Mostly I stay very upbeat and positive and enjoy the little creatures.

Good Luck to all who take on this venture.
Annette

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derrick1p1
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« Reply #22 on: July 16, 2008, 10:45:41 AM »

Annette, at least this way, the decisions and direction you are going is from your own experience.  Making decisions from your experience is much more rewarding (and yes, can be alot of work), but at least your not making decisions b/c some "said so".  Keeping bees naturally can take more work (beeKEEPING), learning and knowledge it seems, but it has many rewards.

Wish I had gone with all mediums and foundationless last year.  I'm headed that direction now. 


off topic: found my first wax moths couple of days ago.  (reduced size of colony, combined with queenless very weak colony) all is well now. Boy, those things are just nasty. 

Best,
Derrick
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I won't let grass grow under my feet, there will be plenty of time to push up daisies.
annette
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« Reply #23 on: July 16, 2008, 11:01:43 PM »

Annette, at least this way, the decisions and direction you are going is from your own experience.  Making decisions from your experience is much more rewarding (and yes, can be alot of work), but at least your not making decisions b/c some "said so".  Keeping bees naturally can take more work (beeKEEPING), learning and knowledge it seems, but it has many rewards.

Wish I had gone with all mediums and foundationless last year.  I'm headed that direction now. 


off topic: found my first wax moths couple of days ago.  (reduced size of colony, combined with queenless very weak colony) all is well now. Boy, those things are just nasty. 

Best,
Derrick

Yes, read my post on the wax moth problems I have been having. And also Derrick, thanks for the pep talk. Yes I have truly learned so, so much about this hobby and will continue to learn.
Annette
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qa33010
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« Reply #24 on: July 18, 2008, 06:12:45 PM »

   I did start out with a BetterBee, all wood, starter kit (without suit)  The only thing I didn't use as is was the foundation.  I used starter strips using the medium foundation for melting and securing the strips and the deep foundation (cut into 10) for the strips.  The hive tool I do use and also bought a Maxant hive tool that I like better.  I am looking at an Italian tool to try.  I used the top feeder (polystyrene) and it was borrowed by new folks, when I can I will order more.  The gloves I don't use after the middle of last year, though I do keep them handy.  The book was good and is welcome in my library.  The stainless steel smoker is now too small for my use but is good if I need to get into only one or two hives  Too bad we can't get a 'pick and choose' in the kits they sell.  I wouldn't start with a kit now but at the time it was the most economical way for me to go.

    I'm a firm believer in local clubs even though there may be those who believe their way is the only way, there may very well be others with a different slant that don't vocalize at the meetings.  The clubs I'm a member of seem very diverse.  The extension office may not have someone to answer questions, but may have free useful literature for you (ours does).  This website and some others are AWESOME and very helpful.  But nothing beats hands on.  Also look for any beekeeping courses that may be available (this helps me at times with the books)

     Definitely keep an eye out for when suppliers are starting to take package orders.  You may also want to check and see if they 'grow their own' or get them from someone else.  If they do the later you may want to try and contact their supplier directly and see what kind of price you can get.  Don't forget to find out if they ship (take into account this cost varies) or if they require pickup.

    I think I've babbled on enough.  Hope I was at least a little helpful. huh
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Everyone said it couldn't be done. But he with a chuckle replied, "I won't be one to say it is so, until I give it a try."  So he buckled right in with a trace of a grin.  If he had a worry he hid it and he started to sing as he tackled that thing that couldn't be done, and he did it.  (unknown)
johnnybigfish
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« Reply #25 on: July 18, 2008, 08:01:55 PM »

Hey Annette!
 Just wondering,...Did you do like me and take the book outside with you when you installed your first bees?
 I even have pages stuck together now because of the syrup I was squirting all over everything!! grin

your friend,
john
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annette
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« Reply #26 on: July 18, 2008, 10:43:57 PM »

Hey Annette!
 Just wondering,...Did you do like me and take the book outside with you when you installed your first bees?
 I even have pages stuck together now because of the syrup I was squirting all over everything!! grin

your friend,
john

You got it my friend. I had a very good friend reading from the book as I was doing the installing. Ha! Ha!
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johnnybigfish
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« Reply #27 on: July 19, 2008, 04:14:50 PM »

Yeh, same here!! Paul and my wife were reading and pointing out pictures for me to see!
HEH HEHE HEH!! grin

your friend,
john
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #28 on: July 19, 2008, 06:25:03 PM »

I would not buy a starter kit.  I would do a lot of homework.  Personally after many years, I cut down all my deeps to mediums, cut down all my ten frame equipment to eight frame equipment and am much happier with all the same size and with lighter boxes.

There actually isn't anything IN a starter kit that I'd buy except maybe the brush, and you can get by without that.

I use a different hive tool, a jacket with a zip on veil, instead of a veil, all eight frame mediums, mostly foundationless (they all come with plastic in a cell size I don't want), I like a screened bottom board, instead of the solid one they sell you, I don't see any point to their hive stand, a couple of bricks or four by fours will work better, I hate deeps, I hate different sized boxes.  The smoker in the kit is the small one and I'd prefer the larger one (easier to keep lit).  And the list goes on...
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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"Everything works if you let it."--Rick Nielsen
kevin
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« Reply #29 on: July 28, 2009, 01:22:44 PM »

I came across this post of mine from last year.  Lots of good advice.  Instead of waiting til spring this year  we purchased, last July, two full hives from a local beekeeper and he continues to this day to be valuable resource. One hive died (we had 9 weeks with no rain in Versailles, KY last year).  The survivor came back with a vengeance this spring and I have to stand on block to get her top box off (I am 6' 1")  and this is after spiting her twice with help from the local beek.  I also caught two swarms this year, one of them in the backyard of my dentist in Lexington, KY.  My co-workers were a little concerned that day to see me leave work early with a cardboard box announcing I was heading out to catch a swarm of bees, but it was more fun than one should have.  One of my biggest problems this year was having enough equipment as we had planned to have three hives,  one spring split and a nuc we were going to buy but ended up with five.  The question is "am I keeping the bees or are the bees keeping me?"

Thanks again
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sc-bee
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« Reply #30 on: July 28, 2009, 01:43:44 PM »

>Watch buying some of the starter kits I did that and ended up with a bunch of stuff I don't use

Ditto

As stated above I wish I had started with all mediums --- 8 frame. The drawback that big operations give is cost of equipment compared to bees in hive( deep and medium boxes about the same price). Some pollinators are converting to 8 frame because I understand they can utilize the space on the truck bed better??? But for the hobbyist I see no drawback except locating medium nucs if you want one.


You also have a Walter T Kelly Bee Supply in Clarkson Ky. Brushy does have free shipping usually the first of Dec. for Santa!!!
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John 3:16
bailey
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« Reply #31 on: July 28, 2009, 04:26:20 PM »

why not get bees now?
you can get a nuc from a local beek and have a hive or two going in the early spring.

you can feed them until the fall flow and they should be fine.

bailey
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most often i find my greatest source of stress to be OPS  ( other peoples stupidity )

It is better to keep ones mouth shut and be thought of as a fool than to open ones mouth and in so doing remove all doubt.
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