Well, I've been buzzing around this site for a while now and finally have time to login.
Just moved to a small town 70 miles SW of Chicago and have a nice garden and neighbors with the same. Am interested in having a hive or two to help pollinate and for a bit-o-honey.
So many questions:
1. I was looking at the horzontal (BYG?)boxes. What benefit do they have, if any, over the standard box?
2. Not much sun in our yard due to our back yard full of trees and neigbor's trees covering the front yard. Best place for sun is right next to the driveway, which is used daily of course. Probably not ideal. Is it okay to place them in the shade?
3. JUST THIS WEEK, I found a hive in a hollowed out tree. Tree is still standing and I think I would need a vac to get them out. I'm I too late in the year to get the tools necessary to start with this hive? It looks like they are going to be there for a while. Nobody lives in the house where the tree is. I figure if I order now, it'll be a week to get everything, then another 2-4 days to get my act together and actually do something.
4. Should I start with one or two. Again, the honey I will probably just give to friend and family, unless it becomes too much, then we will start selling at the local farmer's market.
5. Looks like anywhere between $300-$500 to get started with one. Is that about right?