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Beekeeping--a new beek's journey!PIC HEAVY (first week of Oct)

Discussion in 'Bees and Beekeeping' started by lorihadams, May 30, 2011.

  1. Oct 17, 2011
    lorihadams

    lorihadams Always doing laundry

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    10-16-11

    Sunday morning I got up and fed the bees...it was warmer and less windy but I was by myself again and couldn't keep the smoker lit so I didn't examine the frames. I think they looked okay when I peeked down into the frames so I gave them another baggie of sugar water and closed them back up. I'm planning on feeding them sugar water until the first week of November and then putting the entrance reducer on and removing the empty super and installing the solid bottom board.

    Looking good as far as I can tell. :)
     
  2. Oct 19, 2011
    valmom

    valmom Crafter

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    I am so glad you are keeping this log up. Your hives look great! I am very nervous going into winter, and the weather hasn't coincided with non-working days for me to look in at mine! It has been pouring rain, cold and windy here whenever I have time to open a hive.
     
  3. Oct 28, 2011
    lorihadams

    lorihadams Always doing laundry

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    Well, I haven't fed the bees in a while, I was going to do it tomorrow but our temps took a dive today and it is supposed to rain all day Saturday. We are supposed to get down in the 30s tonight and I need to put on the bottom board but I can't seem to get it to fit. I also need to install the entrance reducer but it is only in the 50s today and starting to rain. I just went out there and tried to insert the bottom board but couldn't get it to go in there all the way so I could get the entrance reducer on too. What am I doing wrong? I just scrapped the whole thing and came back in. I also noticed one bee outside the hive entrance with a varroa mite on it. I hope I didn't screw up by not treating them. Do you think if I put some powdered sugar in there it would help with the varroa mites?
     
  4. Oct 30, 2011
    lorihadams

    lorihadams Always doing laundry

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    Oct 30, 2011 Okay, so we got our first frost last night. I went out Friday afternoon (the 28th) before we got the day long rainstorm Saturday and took off the empty supers, pulled the old empty baggies off, flipped over the inner covers to allow for more ventilation, and put on the entrance reducers on the largest settings. Our daytime temps are supposed to stay in the mid 50s and lower 60s for the next week so I may use the entrance feeder next week some since the temps are supposed to get up in the afternoons later in the week. I left the bottom open because our hives sit on a solid table so I felt like they would be okay if I left the screened bottom board open. I may see about putting something on for a mouse guard, I have some hardware cloth pieces that I may try to fit across the entrance reducer to keep the mice out.
     
  5. Dec 28, 2011
    mrbstephens

    mrbstephens Lovin' The Homestead

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    Thank you for this thread! I'm just looking into starting a hive, but I'm wondering if the bees will do well where I live. We just moved into the woods. I don't know if there would be enough pollen to feed them. I haven't planted anything yet, so most of what is here and at the neighbors is native blueberries, oak trees and rhododendrons. What do you think? Do I have a chance or should I wait till I have an established garden?
     
  6. Dec 28, 2011
    lorihadams

    lorihadams Always doing laundry

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    They should be fine...what kind of trees do you have around? We have lots of tulip poplars and they just love them. But they will find pollen from all over so if you are in a wooded area they will find what they need. I supplemented with pollen patties in september/October to give them a boost going into winter.

    Check with your local county extension agent and see if they know of any beekeepers in your area that you could talk to. You may be able to get set up with a split from one of their hives that is already acclimated to your area come spring. See if you can find a local club, you should be able to look online or maybe find out something from the extension agent about that as well.

    I think with lots of trees that come into pollen at different times they will be fine. Most of us don't think of lots of different trees producing a lot of pollen but you would be surprised how much the bees can get from them. Once you get a garden going then they will find it. There are different plants coming into pollen at different times and they will be able to locate it when it does. You will be amazed at how far they will travel to get food...as long as they have a water source then they should be okay once they get established. You can always feed them through the summer to get them built up and I recommend pollen patties going into winter to give them a boost and help the queen get some extra nutrition that will help her lay eggs a little later going into winter. Don't plan on harvesting any honey the first year, leave it for the bees for winter.

    I will be anxious to see how mine have overwintered. We have had a fairly mild winter so far and when the temps have been into the 60s I see them flying around all the time. It is about to get colder but we'll see how they do. I plan on opening the hive in mid February and inserting a pollen patty for them. I won't do an inspection cause it will probably be too cold but I hear that that can give them a boost and an early start on spring. Our pollen/nectar flow usually starts up mid march so that will help them strengthen up a bit before everything starts blooming.

    I am crossing my fingers that I don't have any major problems with mine. Like I said, they have been out and flying and I just watched the weather and it is supposed to be near 60 for the next few days and in the 20s and 30s at night so not too bad....New Years Day is supposed to be in the mid 60s so they will probably be out flying a bit.
     
  7. Dec 28, 2011
    lorihadams

    lorihadams Always doing laundry

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    An interesting note...I went to a family party and discovered that hubby's stepsister and her husband have been beekeeping for 4 yrs! He and I had a really interesting conversation about his ups and downs...last year he lost one hive to wax moths and he discovered that one of his hives was queenless and bought 2 new queens for it but they never would accept them and he lost that hive too. He lives next to an orchard and they have fruit trees in their yard as well and he said that when the orchard sprays the trees he notices a big affect on his bees. He said that last year the guy from the orchard called before and he told him that there really wasn't anything he could do about it that he couldn't keep the bees from flying over there so go ahead and spray. Sad really.

    He said he had a big problem with varroa mites this year too...I am hoping that mine are okay...he gave everyone a small jar of honey for xmas and I'm anxious to try it. I'm just hoping that my queens are okay through the winter cause one of my hives was definitely weaker. :fl
     
  8. Dec 29, 2011
    mrbstephens

    mrbstephens Lovin' The Homestead

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    We have mostly oaks and pines. There are a few wild cherry and crab apple. My neighbors all have rhododendrons and Japanese Andromeda (pieris japonica). My one neighbor has a really nice Japanese Maple. I haven't seen what my other neighbors have yet. Anything growing here would have to be deer resistant. Oh, and I did notice wisteria in my yard and the neighbor's! And there are a lot of forsythia planted along the long driveways that run up the side of our property. Hmmm. As I type this I'm remembering more and more. There are also TONS of wild blueberries, some wild raspberries across the road and about 1/4 of a mile away is a pond with waterlilies.

    Yes, there is a beekeepers club in my area and I'll be signing up for classes that I think start in February. I'm very excited! Thanks again for this wonderful thread!
     
  9. Dec 29, 2011
    mrbstephens

    mrbstephens Lovin' The Homestead

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    I just asked my neighbor if she know if any of the other neighbors use pesticides in their yards. She said a couple spray for ticks. I just googled it and the most common insecticide used on ticks is Permethrin which is extremely toxic to bees. :(
     

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