My name is Jim and I am from Santa Fe, TX.
My friend Danny was a beekeeper and was getting me and my boys into it a few years ago when he suddenly died. I "inherited" all his stuff but it sat fora few years while I figured out the right time to order packages! ;^)
So I took the plunge this spring and ordered two packages. Almost immediately friends started calling me about cutouts. Finally I figured I had enough basic experience to take on a call from my son's boss:
It about 4' x 1.5' or about 3 basketballs worth! Apparently he's been driving hives from his eaves for several years and abot a year or so ago it apparently took up residence in this tree. He said take it or loan him a suit so he could kill them so we decided to take the plunge.
This was hanging about 15' up in his oak tree over where his wife likes to park her Lexus. My sons and I decided to go for it so I did some research and that lead me to here and JP's videos. I also met another keeper who gave me some pointers. I built a "RubberMaid Bee Vac" Saturday morning and we set out to collect this bear Saturday evening.
The Vac lacked head pressure to be really effective but I scooped 99% into the tube to be sucked into the box. None of the videos prepared e for the waterfall of honey that his hive had. I mounted about 6 frames of brood comb. All this was installed into a medium super with another plastic framed on top of that in a seperate area of my garden away from my other hives. I too one pint of honey for myself and left the rest of the spoils for them which they've already made a major dent in reclaiming.
I never did see a queen- not that I have the experience to pick one out without a flourescent drop of paint but I plan to go back into the hive Saturday to see how they are doing. I reall y hope this queen is they're as I heard they are supposed to be pretty bad arse from an external hive this old? If not I guess I will re-queen by purchasing or steal a foundation with eggs from one of my other hives and install that?
Well, that's my plunge into this and any advice is appreciated.