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Author Topic: this is my bee hive inventory(help me plan for next season)1st year beekeeper  (Read 682 times)
adamant
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« on: December 14, 2011, 06:31:39 PM »

help me with a plan for next season (2012) i am bee keeper that has bees since June 2011. this is my inventory...
1. 9 active hives that i bought this and July that consists of 2 deeps (brood chamber and upper box that are set up with 9 frames each.
2. 1 hive as the same configuration as above but lost after i treated for mites.. (in storage)
3. 22 9 frame shallow boxes that i bought at a auction and added a nailed on spacer that made them into all mediums. cheesy
4. i made up 200 medium frames with plastic foundations for the 22 boxes.
5. 40 5 frame deep nucs that i made up with frames and plastic foundation. (i plan on using some if most as swarm traps)
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thats what i have.. with that inventory, how can i configure this to be a successful next season.. what would you do with this?
thank you
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Acebird
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« Reply #1 on: December 14, 2011, 06:54:26 PM »

learn how to keep bees and worry about equipment latter.
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kathyp
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« Reply #2 on: December 14, 2011, 06:59:41 PM »

you probably can't make a real plan until you see what you have in spring.  then you can decide on splits, swarm catching, etc.  how you configure the hives is not as important as how strong the bees are.  we find strong hive in strange places.  ask JP   grin
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Intheswamp
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« Reply #3 on: December 15, 2011, 12:55:01 AM »

adamant, I think I understand where you're coming from.  Like you, I'm a newbee and I'm trying to figure out my equipment inventory.  I'm thinking that with 9 active hives that you may be taxing your super supply.  If you use two supers per hive then that will leave 4 to divide between heavier producing hives....or to use with any swarms that you trap.  With 40 5-frame nucs/traps you may add another colony or three.  Seems to me with your current number of hives you need more supers.

But, like kathyp mentioned...you don't really know until you get to spring what you will actually have to start the year out with.  

Looking at what you've got and thinking positively that you will start out this spring with a good survival rate I would think scrounging up more supers would be a good thing...you can always use mediums to house colonies in, too,...they're not just for honey. Smiley

I started out figuring on two hives with the possibility of catching a swarm or two.  I was going to start with 18 8-frame mediums.  A friend of my mentor's basically gave me a small nuc that will be one colony if it makes it through the winter.  I had purchased two established colonies from my mentor that he is over-wintering for me.  That makes a total of three colonies that would give me 6 mediums per hive (I know the colonies won't grow/produce the same but I've gotta have a plan to work with).  Then the other day my mentor tells me he has a double-deep 5-frame nuc that he's also going to give me.  Uh-oh, I'm up to four colonies already and just busted my colony equipment budget...down to a four mediums per hive plus two extra ones.  I'm hoping to need 3-4 mediums for brood chambers and I really want to try to catch a few swarms this spring/summer. Smiley  Even without catching any swarms I'm going to start out with twice as many colonies as I figured....  I've gotta scrounge up some more 8-frame mediums!

I inspected that little 8-frame medium nuc that I got (2nd full inspection since I got them).  It's not packed by any means, but there's several bees there.  It's going to be *real* interesting when I get three or four mediums full of bees and brood stacked up!!!!  They did their Japanese Kamakazi squadron heading to Pearl Harbor impression today!  shocked  grin  One sting on the wrist...I had the smoker sitting in the wrong place and the breeze gave them a constant smoking for a while...I've definitely made note of that error...the change in the buzz was enough to let me know something was up!!!

Best wishes, adamant, and keep on studying and planning!
Ed

ETA:  I mis-stated the number of colonies I intended to start with...intended 2, currently looking at 4.  Smiley
« Last Edit: December 15, 2011, 09:23:57 AM by Intheswamp » Logged

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Grieth
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« Reply #4 on: December 15, 2011, 07:14:43 AM »

Good idea to start planning.

I didn't make enough boxes and frames in winter, and have had trouble keeping up with summer and my day job, even though I only have a few hives. 

It is a lot easier to learn to keep bees if you have plenty of gear made up and ready in your shed.
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JackM
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« Reply #5 on: December 15, 2011, 08:26:57 AM »

Boy, talk about starting out at a dead run..................
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BrentX
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« Reply #6 on: December 15, 2011, 09:21:04 AM »

Running all mediums, I plan  6 boxes per hive.  I find a couple of additional boxes to juggle between hives is useful.   Some hives will need more than 6 boxes.  Perhaps this will help you estimate your needs
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BlevinsBees
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« Reply #7 on: December 15, 2011, 03:00:33 PM »

I agree with Kathyp, you have to see where your hives are at in the spring before you have a concrete plan. I would just make up as many boxes/nucs/frames/feeders etc. as you can while you're bored this winter. You'll use it eventually anyway right?
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