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Author Topic: Hello from Winsted, CT  (Read 5041 times)
shakerbeeman
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« on: April 15, 2007, 08:30:05 PM »

This wonderful forum offers a wealth of information. So happy to have found it.

Several years ago I had a burning desire to learn how to keep bees. At the time I realized I was too busy but I never gave up the desire. This year I have resolved to give it a try. My goal will be to expand as I go and use my woodworking abilities combined with the 1000 bd ft of pine I have that needs purpose. As it is late spring and I want to get going I believe I will buy a beginners setup I have found on a live link here. This kit includes one hive and the various necessary accessories. With the available pattern information here and the hive in hand I should be able to build up my stock.

Am I being too impulsive in thinking I can salvage anything out of this season?

Should someone live close to me I would love to hear from you. Any advice would be humbly appreciated.

CP
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dlmarti
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« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2007, 08:42:04 PM »

Welcome, I'm pretty much in the same boat as you.
I didn't make the final decision to enter into the hobby until a few days ago, but I have always wanted a hive.

I always thought that my plot of land was too small (100x90), but then two things happened.  One I stumbled upon this site, and saw that others were making do with small plots of land.  Two a good friend just purchased 10 acres of land about 30 minutes from me.

I've pretty much resigned my self to not buying bees this year, but don't let that influence your decision.
As it stands my plan is to:
1. Gather all the information I can.
2. Gather all of the equipment needed, for several hives, with associated support equipment and nucs.
3. Make contacts in the local bee community, and try to get some hands on.
4. Join a local club, and offer up some volunteer man power.
5. Keep an eye on the local feral hive, for swarming.  If they swarm I'm going to try and capture it.

So thats my plan.

Welcome to the forum.
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Understudy
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« Reply #2 on: April 15, 2007, 09:10:22 PM »

Both of you go out and buy swarm traps and lemongrass oil.

Think of it as bees on the cheap.

It is kinda like fishing, you have to be paitent and you may not get lucky, but you never know.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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The status is not quo. The world is a mess and I just need to rule it. Dr. Horrible
dlmarti
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« Reply #3 on: April 15, 2007, 09:13:02 PM »

Both of you go out and buy swarm traps and lemongrass oil.

Think of it as bees on the cheap.

It is kinda like fishing, you have to be paitent and you may not get lucky, but you never know.

Already planning on it.
If I know of a feral hive that hasn't swarmed yet, can I feed them tons of syrup, to help force them into swarming?  Basically so they will use up the space in the hive.
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shakerbeeman
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« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2007, 09:14:00 PM »

Well I guess my impulsive nature is showing through dmarti. Your approach is more sensible and I may yet find I can't get where I want. As I learn more I may find myself doing just as you.

I have a relative that lives near many apple orchards. This is where I hope to set one hive.
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Understudy
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« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2007, 09:15:03 PM »

Both of you go out and buy swarm traps and lemongrass oil.

Think of it as bees on the cheap.

It is kinda like fishing, you have to be paitent and you may not get lucky, but you never know.

Already planning on it.
If I know of a feral hive that hasn't swarmed yet, can I feed them tons of syrup, to help force them into swarming?  Basically so they will use up the space in the hive.

If you know where a feral hive is then do a cut out.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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The status is not quo. The world is a mess and I just need to rule it. Dr. Horrible
ZuniBee
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2007, 09:18:59 PM »

Quote
Am I being too impulsive in thinking I can salvage anything out of this season?

I would say you are not too impulsive. I made the decision at the end of the summer and there were no bees available..clearly because it was too late. I spent the LONG months between summer and April reading everything I could and buying equipment. It was a very long wait.

I guess I am impulsive but I would say get the hive and get some bees! There are still packages out there and nucs through June in many places. From my experience of waiting, I would say jump in and enjoy it this year.
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dlmarti
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« Reply #7 on: April 15, 2007, 10:07:13 PM »

Both of you go out and buy swarm traps and lemongrass oil.

Think of it as bees on the cheap.

It is kinda like fishing, you have to be paitent and you may not get lucky, but you never know.

Already planning on it.
If I know of a feral hive that hasn't swarmed yet, can I feed them tons of syrup, to help force them into swarming?  Basically so they will use up the space in the hive.

If you know where a feral hive is then do a cut out.

Sincerely,
Brendhan

Can't its lodged between two concrete walls, of an old NAVY listening post, with a steel grate over the entrance.
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Understudy
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« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2007, 10:28:59 PM »

Both of you go out and buy swarm traps and lemongrass oil.

Think of it as bees on the cheap.

It is kinda like fishing, you have to be paitent and you may not get lucky, but you never know.

Already planning on it.
If I know of a feral hive that hasn't swarmed yet, can I feed them tons of syrup, to help force them into swarming?  Basically so they will use up the space in the hive.

If you know where a feral hive is then do a cut out.

Sincerely,
Brendhan

Can't its lodged between two concrete walls, of an old NAVY listening post, with a steel grate over the entrance.

And you think this would be difficult?
Come on toughen up and go get a gas powered concrete saw and get to work. These bees need a good home.

Sincerely,
Brendhan
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The status is not quo. The world is a mess and I just need to rule it. Dr. Horrible
beehive lane
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« Reply #9 on: April 16, 2007, 12:20:21 AM »

i have realized as well, this year, I still don't have the time I need to devote to my first hive. I am doing the same thing. Purchasing everything I need. I joined this forum last night, got a subscription to "the Beekeeper's Journal", and called a local beekeeper today. Hope I get a reply, just left a message! Nothing better than free labor in trade. How can he pass that up. Gathering swarms!!! Wow! you are jumping right in.....my hero! My husband was talking about watching his grandfather do just that! Carl was the god of bees in this area. Our friends in town have a swarm in a tree. .....not up to wearing the super hero cape yet. I am building a large chicken coop, and my children are challenging my sanity....marshmallow mosh in the living room whole bags of flour (Christmas in spring!!!) and sword fighting with my steak knives. Would like to hear how YOUR year of planning goes. Building your own hives.........very cool.
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shakerbeeman
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« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2007, 01:30:39 PM »

Hi all and thanks for the various replies.

I am a bit confused between the need for a hive versus a nuc. That would indicate I better get that Beekeeping For Dummies book read.

Advice on where to get the start up needs including nuc or hive appreciated. I have seen some in the live links on this forum. So much information is a bit of an overload.

As I continue on and start making the hives I wonder the best use of my materials. I had my pine milled to 1 1/2 in. thickness and could therefore build my supers, etc. out of a bit thicker stock perhaps 1-1 1/8 in. if this would be advantageous. My feeling is they may be a bit more rugged and last longer. Any thoughts?
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dlmarti
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« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2007, 01:53:29 PM »

Go to your local library, they have the books you need to get started.
Some of them are a little old, but that will get you started.

A nuc is just a small hive.  A full size hive is used for production (honey, bees, pollen, comb, etc), a nuc is used for either queen production or holding a queen in reserve, or for simple temporary hive storage.
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shakerbeeman
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« Reply #12 on: April 17, 2007, 02:04:55 PM »

This afternoon I will be going to the library. So many questions to ask and so little time. Thanks for your quick reply dlmarti. It seems as if I might might need a hive in order to produce honey. That would be my objective but if I become good at this it seems to me as if I would want to make my own queens also.
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dlmarti
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« Reply #13 on: April 17, 2007, 02:18:20 PM »

When you start reading the books, you'll realize you might want a nuc also.

There is a mechanism in bee nature called swarming (its the method that nature uses to create new colonies), if your first hive swarms (half the bee leave) a nuc will allow you to recapture them.  While not required to own bees, the nuc will help you preserve your investment in the hobby.

Here are two books I've liked, so far.  Good for beginners:
    
Hive Management: A Seasonal Guide for Beekeepers
by Richard E. Bonney (Author)
   
Keeping bees / by John Vivian ; illustrated by Liz Buel.
by Vivian, John.
Charlotte, Vt. : Williamson Pub. Co., c1986.


The John Vivian book was the first one I read, and still my fovorite.
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shakerbeeman
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« Reply #14 on: April 17, 2007, 02:24:03 PM »

I will look for those books today. Thanks so much.

I do begin to see the need for both the hive and the nuc. I have many years of woodworking and have my own cabinet shop. Whils I intend to buy one of each of the necessary items to start up, needless to say I take great pride in being able to make what I need in wood products. Specially given I have the large stack of pine waiting for a destination.

This is a great forum!!
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dlmarti
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« Reply #15 on: April 17, 2007, 02:39:55 PM »

If you have a wood working shop you don't need to buy anything, although I would suggest buying the frames.

Here are plans:
Clicky
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shakerbeeman
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« Reply #16 on: April 17, 2007, 02:52:33 PM »

Great selection of plans there. Now with a little reading and some decision making I should be able to determine which parts are the essentials to make for start. Some postings I have read seem to stick to the medium size supers only because of the weight. I need a bit of studying tonight.

Tip o the hat
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dlmarti
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« Reply #17 on: April 17, 2007, 04:11:46 PM »

Great selection of plans there. Now with a little reading and some decision making I should be able to determine which parts are the essentials to make for start. Some postings I have read seem to stick to the medium size supers only because of the weight. I need a bit of studying tonight.

Tip o the hat

Yeah, thats a question I haven't answered either,  do I go with the medium or deep boxes, do I go with the 8 frame or the 10 frame boxes.

It seams like all of the books default to two deep 10 frames, for the bottom of the hive, and then medium supers above that.

The people that are enjoying the hobby, and not trying to make a living at it, seem to suggest the lighter weight solutions.

Still, I haven't decided yet.  There is alot to be said by having all of your equipment being the same.  Maybe I'll go with the 10 frame mediums.  Its a standard size, and if I wanted to go to the larger ones I could easily.  Also companies stock the 10 frame boxes, than the 8 frame.

The nuc I just ordered has the deep frames, not many sources for the medium frames.
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shakerbeeman
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« Reply #18 on: April 17, 2007, 05:11:09 PM »

Back from the library with books. Couldn't get the suggested ones but I will. Instead I got these;

Beekeeping, the gentle craft/ John F Adams

Beekeeping, a practical guide/ Ridhard E. Bonney

How to keep bees and sell honey/ Walter T. Kelley

This should take me a while.
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dlmarti
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« Reply #19 on: April 17, 2007, 05:29:37 PM »

When your done those, take my list to the reference librarian (in the local library), and ask them to get them for you using an inter-library loan.  Its free to you, and a greet way to get a specific book.
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