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Author Topic: Newbee With Some Concerns...  (Read 649 times)
jeepaddict4life
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« on: May 12, 2009, 08:44:13 AM »

Hi All,

Well, the 'day of delivery' is getting nearer...I will have my first package in-hand about two weeks from today. While I'm indescribably excited and happy that it is almost here, I do have some last-minute concerns which I'm hoping some of you here can quell. Firstly, in hindsight, I should have placed my package order earlier. I had some financial snags, and as a result, had to wait. Is this going to cause any problems in the colony's development? Is there any special procedures I should take to ensure their survival through their first Winter?

My other concern relates to sting protection. I have a veil and a jacket, as well as gloves and a smoker. The question here is, should I bother with any of this while hiving the package? I have seen and heard of beekeepers hiving packages with nothing at all, and when I asked some local beekeepers at a club meeting, I got a highly-mixed answer which only served to confuse me further.

Any input is HIGHLY valued here! Thanks in advance, and I look forward to posting here more often in the coming weeks!  afro

-Mike 
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Two Bees
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« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2009, 09:25:28 AM »

Since you may be coming in on the end of a nectar flow, I would feed 1:1 syrup to the new package as long as they will take it.  They need lots of nectar to draw out 20 frames (assuming you will be using 2 deeps) for the brood and winter storage.  But you need to keep a watch on them as the colony expands during the summer.  You would not want to feed them so much that they pack the brood chamber with honey and take up the space that the queen needs to lay eggs.

As far as installing the new package, every beek has his/her own comfort zone relative to handling bees.  My recommendation would be to forget the smoke and spray 1:1 syrup on the package a short time before you install them.  The syrup will occupy them for a while.  Since you will be working some relatively small things during the install (i.e. queen cage), I would try to do without the gloves and just use the veil to make sure that you don't get stung on the face.

Just my thoughts.....
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Robo
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« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2009, 09:27:06 AM »

Feed Feed Feed.   Feed them as long as they will take it,  but also make sure they have plenty of room and the queen does not get honey bound because you need her to lay as much as possible to get the colony strength up.

I would wear a veil at the minimum.  You never know when a bee will fly into your face, even unintentionally, and sting you.  If you feel the need to wear gloves, I would recommend Nitrile as they still give you adequate feel and grip.  Leather gloves are bulky and make you more clumsy which in turn kills bees or irritates them more.  The rest of the gear is a personal choice with how comfortable you are with the bees.

rob...
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jeepaddict4life
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« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2009, 11:01:29 AM »

Thanks for the advice! I was planning on using sugar syrup in a spray bottle for the hiving. I will definitely wear my veil. As for the aforementioned Nitrile gloves, Robo, do you mean the disposable type, or something more heavy-duty?
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Two Bees
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« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2009, 02:20:49 PM »

I've used the disposable ones that work really well.  But I would always reuse them if they weren't too sticky with propolis.

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"Don't know what I'd do without that boy......but I'm sure willin' to give it a try!"
J.D. Clampett commenting about Jethro Bodine.
Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2009, 07:33:23 PM »

>should I bother with any of this while hiving the package?

Yes.  You'll have enough to worry about.
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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
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