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Author Topic: Nother new guy.  (Read 597 times)
combover
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« on: May 07, 2007, 01:23:38 PM »

Hi everybody, nice forum!!

I am in missouri and really looking hard in getting into beekeeping.  I am shooting for starting next spring.

Few questions.. Off a hive setup of 1 or 2 brood houses and 2 supers how much honey can one expect to harvest?  How often can you harvest througout the year, and when seems to be the average stop date on honey harvest to let the colony store up for winter?

And those of you who have hives in your yards.  Do you all still mow and trim around the boxes?  Does that seem to bother the bees at all?

Thanks in advance.
« Last Edit: May 07, 2007, 03:03:03 PM by combover » Logged
tillie
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« Reply #1 on: May 07, 2007, 01:49:31 PM »

I hope a more experienced beekeeper will answer this - last year was my first year and I got about 100 pounds of honey total from two hives that started from nucs in April.  I think how much you harvest depends on things like:

1.  The length of the honey flow in your area which is affected by the weather as well as the bloom seasons for different plants.  This is going to be different for everyone because of all the climate differences.   In Georgia we only have one honey flow - now - until about the end of June.  Some beekeepers have a second flow in the fall.

2.  How well your hive builds up - they won't forage for nectar without the workforce and the more bees that are out there, the more honey you get.  This is determined by whether you start with a package, a nuc, a swarm, how good the queen is at laying, etc.  Also is affected by getting your bees early enough for them to get well built up before the flow in your area.

3.  How well you stay on top of the bees.  If you let the bees fill up the supers without providing more space, they are not going to give you more honey - so you have to watch to add supers as needed.  I thought like you, that I would start with 2 brood boxes and 2 honey supers and both of my hives needed more boxes than that.

I'm sure there's much more - welcome to this forum where there is always so much to learn and many people willing to share.

Linda T in Atlanta (but I lived in Missouri when I was 1 - 2 years old!)
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #2 on: May 07, 2007, 06:03:13 PM »

Honey harvest is mainly dependant of 4 things:
1. Strength of colony, the more bees the more honey.
2. Pastures, the more flowering plants in a given area the more the bees can harvest.
3. Duration and timing of honey flow(s).  Some areas, like mine, have more than 1 honey flow per season.
4. Weather.  Inclimate weather can decrease the amount of time bees have to collect nector, too dry can effect the amount of nector available.  Your best harvest will come from years of "normal" weather.

With proper management of bee hives, strong hives, good pastures, long length and/or duration of honey flow, and fair weather a person can get more than 300 lbs per hive. 

If starting from a package in the April, I caution not to expect a harvest the first year.  The 1st year is the development year, just getting it strong enough to collect enough stores for the winter is a major achievement.  A harvest the 1st year is serendipity.
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