Latt alot of good folks on that forum. I've been using the no chemical method some good reading on the subject
If you looking to start this spring you should look into ordering your bee's or getting on a local club's swarm list. Best of Luck
I checked out that video of installing bees. Very interesting way of doing it. I have never heard of putting the whole package of bees(box and all) right inside the hive box.
That guy must live in a warmer climate in order to do it that way. When I install my bees in the middle of April, the weather is still pretty cool with freezing temps at night. If you used the method in the video during cooler weather and freezing at night, the bees in the package box would cluster together inside the package box and not be able to move from there into the hive box where the queen is. If I was having warmer weather during the week of installing them, I think that method would work.
Another thing he showed was using a honey super on top of only one brood box. In the northern cold climates the bees need to fill up two brood boxes with brood, honey and pollen in order to survive the long northern winters. So you would wait for the two bottom brood boxes to be mostly filled and then put a honey super on top of these two boxes.
Here's a video that is closer to the way I do it. Which is more suitable for northern climates.
Also curious as to how much honey you were harvesting from your hives.
I beleive like you that its best to not introduce chemicals into the hive. Bushes site says that it weakens the ammune system.
In the seven years that I had bees, I did not have any issues of mites, beetles or foulbrood.
Classicfur I bought one from brushy mountain about 2 years back. I harvested about 100 lbs from both hives in 2 1/2 years, last year was a very wet season here local. I'm looking to expand to 4-6 hives and manage for personal use and to give out to some friends. I use alot of honey.. I'm kind of a health food nut and it's one of those God's gift's food.
The amount of honey you harvested per year, is that normal for your area?
I know in WI for a first year hive we were getting close to 50 lbs of honey per hive. And the older hives were bringing in over 100 lbs of honey per hive. But this was in some really great farming area. Lots of fields.
In Maine they say I should get between 30-120 lbs of honey per hive. I will soon find out.
I'm starting back up with two hives this spring and have enough equip for 12 hives. I hope to add another four hives in 2013.
First year I didn't harvest but a small amount of honey. The most was last year and it was a very wet year so 50lb's per hive wasn't bad. I'd say the 30-120lb is about right for this area also. If I get 100 per hive I'd be very happy. Trying to limit sugar feeding. I'm going to try some cut comb this year which will cut down on some weight due to comb building. All the best with your yard building. Trahn
Not sure what you mean by \"limit the sugar feeding\". If there is no nectar flow coming into the hive and cause the bees wax glands to start producing wax for producing comb, then they would need sugar water in order to draw out the comb.
My thought is to feed them as much sugar water as they want until there is a significant nectar flow coming into the hive. That way they are drawing comb continually.
I try to limit sugar feeding by leaving more honey on the hive to winter over. I do sugar feed some in the spring before the nector flow. Bush talks about a PH inbalance in sugar water compared to nector on his site. Something I've never tested or observed but just try to practice.