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Author Topic: Is the First Year a Free Ride?  (Read 1616 times)
luvin honey
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« on: June 20, 2009, 12:03:01 AM »

It's so lovely to look into my hives and see everything clean and healthy. It gets me wondering, though. Is the first year basically a free ride for any disease or pests? Besides ants between my topbars and cover, everything looks great!
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The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy.
---Emily Dickinson
johnnybigfish
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« Reply #1 on: June 21, 2009, 09:33:49 PM »

Hi!
The first year for me was really good like youre talking about too!
 Its nice to see all the clean comb and your boxes being nice and clean at first....and, when you start, and you see pics of peoples hives, you wonder,"Why are the boxes so junky looking?"
 At first, my hives were all straight and even, and clean....my grass was trimmed real nice around the hives....
But now......Well,.....Its not too bad,...but theres 10 of them hives out there now....sitting there like sentinels.....looking in all directions....and my first 2 hives I got are still setting rite where I put them the day I got them Smiley....I have deep grasses and bricks and stuff hidden in the deep grass...and usually, I find the blocks and bricks when I try to mow close to the hives!
This is part of my bee yard earlier this year...now the grass is deeper than what you see in the picture! Its not too bad yet, but at first I had this all mowed and trimmed it with my hands! Now the bees chase me when I mow around them sometimes!
your friend,
john
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luvin honey
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« Reply #2 on: June 22, 2009, 12:20:18 AM »

Looks beautiful to me!! How about disease and bugs, though? Basically, I'm wondering when I can start to feel smug.  afro Hah! Kidding! Really, though, does everybody get a first year disease and bug free? Of course, I may be jumping the gun a bit at only about 6 weeks here...
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The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy.
---Emily Dickinson
Natalie
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« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2009, 12:30:20 AM »

Hey John, your hives look so purty. I love the area where you have them, how come I never saw that picture before? Wink
How many hive tools do you think you lost in that grass? grin
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johnnybigfish
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« Reply #4 on: June 22, 2009, 08:59:56 PM »

Hey Nat!
 I dont know why I hadnt put that pic in here...I guess it never occured to me to post it till I was thinking how nice my yard used to look!
Oh....Two hive tools are in there.....also, 2 pocket knives and one screwdriver....and no telling how many entrance reducers!
Hey Luvin, I didnt get any bugs until last fall if I remember right! I got wax moths and hive beetles. I think it was because I had too much space for the bees to guard over, you know,....too many hive boxes and supers...I didnt know any better about too much or too little space. I learned from JP tho....If you have bees, you eventually have some waxworms/waxmoths.
 I got roaches in my hives tho! They gross me out but they usually stay in the upper side of the inner cover...But, guess what??? I eat the honey anyways!!!..............Cooool, huh? grin

your friend,
john
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Natalie
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« Reply #5 on: June 22, 2009, 09:21:29 PM »

Man Johnny you are one of a kind. grin
You may be able to market that roach honey, a little creative marketing and you could have a niche.
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luvin honey
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« Reply #6 on: June 23, 2009, 07:39:36 AM »

Thanks, Johnny!

Natalie--how are your first-year hives? Have you had any disease or pest problems yet? Anybody else?

I have carpenter ants like crazy, but they stay between the topbars and cover, so I'm not counting them as a bee colony problem Smiley
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The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy.
---Emily Dickinson
Natalie
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« Reply #7 on: June 23, 2009, 10:42:47 AM »

I have been very lucky so far. Everything is going great but I have 2 neighbors that keep bees, one hive each that know virtually nothing about bees, they just have them on their property and the bees do their thing. They don't actively take care of them. One is an older man who I think just feels its too much for him but the other one just is oblivious about beekeeping in general.
I have been trying to help both of them out.
I worry that pests(meaning the real problem ones for the bees) from their hives could contaminate mine but if I keep mine strong enough hopefully it will be okay.
I am very pleased at how well some of the colonies are building up. The ones that I got first are further ahead and the population is just exploding so I hope the hives I got later will catch up and do the same.
Its been raining here non stop for days now so I hope they are all in there building lots of comb instead of playing scrabble Wink
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Pond Creek Farm
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« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2009, 11:54:48 PM »

In my experience, the answer is yes, sort of.  I thought all was well as I went into winter.  I was wrong.  By April, all of my hives had perished.  the causes were variable, but I have been told that it was due to starvation (despite all the honey left inside), SHB and varroa.  I am too new at this to know, but I have learned that what I have in November is not what I will have in April. 
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Brian
mgmoore7
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« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2009, 09:02:47 PM »

Definately do mite counts even in the 1st year.  If they are low, maybe just do some sugar dusting. 
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luvin honey
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« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2009, 10:09:52 PM »

I've had collapsed comb with drone brood and pulled them out for a peek. No varroa mites, but I guess this was just a very small sample...
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The pedigree of honey
Does not concern the bee;
A clover, any time, to him
Is aristocracy.
---Emily Dickinson
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