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Author Topic: I am a next year newbee from Washington  (Read 1424 times)
Variable
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« on: November 15, 2013, 12:15:30 AM »

Greetings all! I am going to be a new beekeeper come Spring. I live in a small community nestled in the woods of the Cascade Mountain Range. I am hoping this will be a good area for bees to thrive. My father kept a few hives when I was a very young child and have always wanted to do it myself. Now that I am a father and my kids are starting to grow up I thought it may be fun (for both myself and my kids) to start our own hive. With all the talk of the trouble bees are having I also thought I could do my part to help the pollinators numbers with my own hive or two. Thanks to those who maintain and contribute to this forum! I have learned quite a bit here and am impressed by the level of participation among some members.

Well did not have much to say just wanted to prove that I am human and not a spammer and get the post in before I forget and get banned....
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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
Moots
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« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2013, 04:58:05 AM »

Variable,
Welcome to the forum...I got interested int he whole "bee" thing a little over a year ago.  Started with two Nucs in January, with the original plan being, 2 or 3 hives for this first year.  Well....fair warning, the hobby is a bit addictive, ended up catching quite a few swarms and doing a couple cutouts and I'm now headed into my first winter with 10 hives.  grin

I would strongly suggest doing at least 2 as opposed to 1, lots of advantages to having 2...it allows you to have something to compare and contrast, not to mention, if you have a hive in trouble....You can rob Peter, to help Paul.

How old are your children?  I have a 14 year old nephew who's been my right hand man in this adventure and he's really enjoyed it, it's allowed for us to share some real quality time together.  

Are you planning on making your own woodenware?  If so, my advice would be to make at least twice as much as you think you may need. laugh  Trust me, you'll need it at some point.  Besides, it'll be a great way for you to help pass the time till spring and your bees arrive.  Smiley

Good luck and welcome to the forum, I know it's been an invaluable resource to me, plenty of good knowledgable folks willing to share their experiences.  
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"We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions."
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tefer2
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« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2013, 07:44:40 AM »

Welcome to the forum Variable. There's pages of info through the search function to help with questions you may have. Looking forward to your posts.
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Joe D
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« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2013, 10:18:05 AM »

Welcome Variable, you may also want to join your local bee club.  When you have a question just post it someone will usually get you ananswer. 




Joe
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mikecva
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« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2013, 02:14:13 PM »

Welcome Variable. This is the time of year when we read books, magazines and our notes from this last season. We plan for the next season and hope we only repeat a very few of our mistakes. Ask questions and see if your local bee club has a mentoring program for new beeks (this will really help).  -Mike
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Listen to others but make your own decisions. That way you own the results.
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Variable
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« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2013, 01:49:30 AM »

Variable,
Welcome to the forum...I got interested int he whole "bee" thing a little over a year ago.  Started with two Nucs in January, with the original plan being, 2 or 3 hives for this first year.  Well....fair warning, the hobby is a bit addictive, ended up catching quite a few swarms and doing a couple cutouts and I'm now headed into my first winter with 10 hives.  grin

I would strongly suggest doing at least 2 as opposed to 1, lots of advantages to having 2...it allows you to have something to compare and contrast, not to mention, if you have a hive in trouble....You can rob Peter, to help Paul.

How old are your children?  I have a 14 year old nephew who's been my right hand man in this adventure and he's really enjoyed it, it's allowed for us to share some real quality time together.  

Are you planning on making your own woodenware?  If so, my advice would be to make at least twice as much as you think you may need. laugh  Trust me, you'll need it at some point.  Besides, it'll be a great way for you to help pass the time till spring and your bees arrive.  Smiley

Good luck and welcome to the forum, I know it's been an invaluable resource to me, plenty of good knowledgable folks willing to share their experiences.  

Moots,
Thank you and everyone for the friendly welcome.
To answer your questions and comments....
1. I will probably end up with more than one hive. In fact today I got the "rock" set in place that will be the area I get to have my bees. It is a slab of local rock about 2 feet by 7 feet and about 6-8 inch thick. It will probably fit 2 hives well and there is a spot for one more about 5 feet away..... Plus my girls want one of their own.
2. 4 and 7. Both July babies. Both have been sitting on my knee for hours watching videos and asking questions. My youngest told me she wants a pink beehive for herself when she saw a brightly painted one on a video.
3. I am making my own boxes, bottom board and top cover based on the the Langstroth size and frames with a Warre personality and a "garden" look.... (Permanent insulated cedar most-likely with a quilt box on top and a copper clad peaked roof... although I have not fully decided yet and I am still looking at heating/cooling and ventilation both for Summer and Winter) I have most the cedar stacked in a pile waiting to be cut.... just time and money....

Thanks again and I am sure I will be asking a lot of questions.
 
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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
Moots
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« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2013, 11:37:18 AM »


3. I am making my own boxes, bottom board and top cover based on the the Langstroth size and frames with a Warre personality and a "garden" look.... (Permanent insulated cedar most-likely with a quilt box on top and a copper clad peaked roof... although I have not fully decided yet and I am still looking at heating/cooling and ventilation both for Summer and Winter) I have most the cedar stacked in a pile waiting to be cut.... just time and money....


Variable,
One suggestion that you may want to consider, since you're building your own equipment, with a few personal touches...

I got this idea from what they call a modified Langstroth...What you do is build your bottom board so that your opening is along the long edge of your box, as opposed to the shorter edge.  What this does is allow you to stand directly behind your hive to work it without putting yourself in an awkward reach position for your frames.  The traditional Langstroth is more comfortable to work from the side, but this arguable exposes you a little more to potential stings, not to mention if you have multiple hives on a stand, you really can't stand to the side.

Just something to consider, I've done it and been very happy with it.  And the beauty is the only equipment it really affects is the bottom board.   
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"We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions."
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Variable
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« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2013, 12:24:35 PM »

Moots,
Thank you for the advice. I had seen that before and was thinking about it. However the orientation of my hives allow me full access all the way around. I should post the picture of the area my wife said I can keep the bees in..... Not sure if I am allowed to post images yet.
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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
Moots
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Location: Gonzales LA (Southeastern Louisiana)


« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2013, 12:56:44 PM »

Moots,
Thank you for the advice. I had seen that before and was thinking about it. However the orientation of my hives allow me full access all the way around. I should post the picture of the area my wife said I can keep the bees in..... Not sure if I am allowed to post images yet.

** emphasis added

Variable,
Cool.....Glad to see you have a full appreciation for the MOST important rule...approval from the wife!  grin
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"We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions."
                                                                                                                   - Ronald Reagan
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« Reply #9 on: November 18, 2013, 02:14:59 PM »

I may be new to bees but I have a full understanding of what it takes to keep a happy marriage. Lucky for me my wife did not seem to care too much that I wanted to keep bees. Heck for my birthday, in October, she got me a smoker, a hive tool and the book Beekeeping for Dummies. I took that as an OK to get the bees. We then had to figure out where in the yard to put them... originally she wanted me to put it on the North side of our yard. This is a great spot, we rarely use that area, it is a small area of yard away from the larger South lawn and there is plenty of room. The problem was it is the North side of my house and in the shade. Grass barely grows there and the moss is the only thing keeping that area green. So after we walked around our yard talking about where the sun shines we decided to put it in the corner of our flower garden (on the South side of the house!!!!) It will get all day sun (not really... it will get some late evening shade once the sun moves over the garage and starts to cast a shadow)
The area she is allowing me to keep the bees has room for 3-5 hives (depending on how close together I put them) Now that the dirt-work is done and the rock is in place to act as my stand I am ready to start building boxes, covers and all the other fun things I get to make!!!!
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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
JPinMO
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« Reply #10 on: November 18, 2013, 08:54:11 PM »

Welcome, Variable!
Glad to hear you'll get to have more than one hive, that will increase your chances of success greatly.

Have you joined a bee club? Beekeeping classes are held over the winter and early spring. If you don't know where the clubs are, do a search for your state beekeepers association, or try contacting your local Extension office.

Your girls will be fascinated, and when they're old enough to join 4-H, beekeeping is a great project!
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Variable
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« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2013, 05:18:05 PM »

Welcome, Variable!
Glad to hear you'll get to have more than one hive, that will increase your chances of success greatly.

Have you joined a bee club? Beekeeping classes are held over the winter and early spring. If you don't know where the clubs are, do a search for your state beekeepers association, or try contacting your local Extension office.

Your girls will be fascinated, and when they're old enough to join 4-H, beekeeping is a great project!

JPinMO,
I have not joined a club yet. I did talk to one at the Puyallup Fair a few months ago but they are a bit too far South of me to be comfortable. I am looking for one in the Maple Valley WA area. I am sure there is one closer than Peirce County. There is a bee class at one of the local community colleges I was thinking about taking.
I sure hope my girls enjoy the experience.... time will tell.
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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
Brother Dave
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« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2013, 10:00:18 PM »

welcome Variable I am also from Washington state but on the Olympic peninsula. I an in my second year of keeping bees. I like you researched for about 9 months before starting my hives. it is fun to hear other peoples adventures and comments.
Dave
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Variable
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« Reply #13 on: November 20, 2013, 11:30:19 AM »

Brother Dave,
Thank you for your welcome. I too have been researching beekeeping for about 6 months now. It is an interesting story (at least to me). Back in June or July (I would have to look at the date on the pics to be sure) there was a swarm that decided to nest in the floor (between the first floor and basement) of my father-in-laws. I called a friend who keeps bees and told him what was going on. He came out and placed a hive next to the area the swarm was entering the house. He put a little honey and lemon grass (I think it was lemon grass) in the hive and by the next evening they had moved in and started drawing comb. Now I digress a bit but when I was about 5-10 my dad kept bees. I have always had fond memories of those times with him catching a swarm and getting them into a new box. This swarm brought back so many good memories I decided then that I was going to get some bees. Now that my kids are about the same age I was when my dad kept bees I thought the timing was just great.... So the adventure began.
Once I can post pictures I will post some of that swarm.
Hope all is well in Shelton (I love that town and get to go there 2 times a year for work... what a nice area) We also head down your way a few times a year to go quading in Tahuya...
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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
Brother Dave
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« Reply #14 on: November 21, 2013, 11:54:59 PM »

I am looking forward to your swarm picture. I had a small victory my ant repellant (ground cinnamon ) worked I had only one red ant on my inner cover today. I am mostly enjoying experimenting trying new things out and seeing what works for me.


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Brother Dave
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« Reply #15 on: November 22, 2013, 02:22:26 AM »

I have been interested in bees since childhood to. I look forward to sharing bees with my grand child when she is older


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Variable
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« Reply #16 on: November 22, 2013, 06:02:28 PM »

This is the swarm my buddy caught on/in my Father-in-laws house. This made me want to start my own hive. It was an awesome sight to behold.... thousands of bees flying around looking for a new home. The sky turned black... not really but it was a lot of bees. They originaly started to take hold in the wall directly above the hive. We pulled the board back and it did not look like they had swarmed into the wall but were "just checking it out". That night they all left. By the next day they were back but this time the trap was waiting. They took residency and that evening my buddy came back and put the hive in he truck and took them home. I should ask him how they did...... I wonder if they even survived. I guess I should give him a call this weekend.... if I can find the time.




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I want to beelieve.
WA Apiary ID WA14-077
3 Langstroth Medium hives, 1 nuc.
See data on one hive at http://twolittleladiesapiary.com/hivedata.php
https://www.facebook.com/twolittleladiesapiary
Brother Dave
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« Reply #17 on: November 22, 2013, 07:25:35 PM »

very cool I have not had the privilege to see a swarm yet. thanke for the picturre.  David
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GSF
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« Reply #18 on: November 28, 2013, 05:15:17 AM »

Welcome!
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