I am now a Beekeeper!!

I am now a Beekeeper!!

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daved

231 posts

251 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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dickymint said:
Your profile says Wales and your a Wedger bow
Yes, I'm in Wales but sadly an ex-wedger now frown Had to sell when we moved house last year. It wasn't getting used so went to a better home.

pim

2,344 posts

91 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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My son in law keeps bees he has 4 hives.About 4 years now he went first to a bee keepers course.

In the summer I sit in his garden watching the bees non stop working.The honey they produce is top class.I'm lucky I get it for free.

It is a great hobby but there is more to it than you think.Swarming can be a problem when the hives are having to many bees.Good luck we need bees the more the better they are essential to us.

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,625 posts

225 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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All assembled but need to decide wether or not to treat the wood.
The kit came with only one super/brood box as apparently you don't need more until the brood is nearly full - need to know if what the difference is (physically) between a brood box and a super..

Can't do more until about May when I can buy the "nucleus" except to do the research etc.

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,625 posts

225 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
quotequote all
Ps. may have to move it outside as I'm not sure if bees can use a cat flap hehe

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,625 posts

225 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
quotequote all
Tonsko said:
What wood is it?
Not sure if Cedar or Pine. My gut feeling is to leave it as is - if/when it rots then buy another .... or five smile

daved

231 posts

251 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
quotequote all
dickymint said:


All assembled but need to decide wether or not to treat the wood.
The kit came with only one super/brood box as apparently you don't need more until the brood is nearly full - need to know if what the difference is (physically) between a brood box and a super..

Can't do more until about May when I can buy the "nucleus" except to do the research etc.
Brood box is deeper than a super. I've never had to have more than one brood box on a hive at a time. If you're lucky and it's a good spring/summer you will need a second super to go on top of the original - once it's getting full. The bees like to have space to store the honey - lack of space is factor in them swarming. If you're really lucky you'll need several supers, but this is Wales and that doesn't happen often. Best have two spares just in case.

I've treated some of our hives but they should be ok for a while if you don't treat them. Make sure you get something that isn't full of chemicals - bad for the bees. I forget what we use but I can have a look and find out what it is if you need help. 'Duck's back' rings a bell though.

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,625 posts

225 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
quotequote all
daved said:
dickymint said:


All assembled but need to decide wether or not to treat the wood.
The kit came with only one super/brood box as apparently you don't need more until the brood is nearly full - need to know if what the difference is (physically) between a brood box and a super..

Can't do more until about May when I can buy the "nucleus" except to do the research etc.
Brood box is deeper than a super. I've never had to have more than one brood box on a hive at a time. If you're lucky and it's a good spring/summer you will need a second super to go on top of the original - once it's getting full. The bees like to have space to store the honey - lack of space is factor in them swarming. If you're really lucky you'll need several supers, but this is Wales and that doesn't happen often. Best have two spares just in case.

I've treated some of our hives but they should be ok for a while if you don't treat them. Make sure you get something that isn't full of chemicals - bad for the bees. I forget what we use but I can have a look and find out what it is if you need help. 'Duck's back' rings a bell though.
Cheers, so to put this one to bed I need to add to the deeper brood box (which include the Hoffman stuff) with a further 1 or 2 shallower boxes (again with the Hoffman stuff) and a Queen separator? But I don't need these until the brood is large enough?

dickymint

Original Poster:

19,625 posts

225 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
quotequote all
Tonsko said:
What wood is it? If it's cedar (which is probably is) then it has very strong weather resistance anyway. Treating it will not be healthy for the bees. I've got some second hand cedar National hives, and they were 10 years old before I got them, so don't worry about wood treatment.

When you buy new bits for your hive, ensure you buy WBC parts. That's the type of hive that you have there, the 'classic' shape, if you like. Can recommend Maisemore Apiaries for supplies. WBC are slightly smaller than Nationals, which are a different size to Langstroth and so on. Not all hives are equal!

http://www.bees-online.co.uk/products.asp?b=6&... for a visual representation of the brood/super frames.

As for brood/super, a brood box is usually twice the depth of the super. To start off with, put some wax foundation (a basic starter comb) in, as the bees then have to do less work. If you choose wired foundation, it provides more strength, but you will be unable to cut the comb out to consume the honey that way.

Don't forget your queen excluder.

Edited by Tonsko on Tuesday 10th January 14:33
Ah so wired for the brood but unwired for the honey super/s?

XCP

15,644 posts

195 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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Slightly o/t

We keep Red mason bees. No honey but good for pollinating. Interesting hatching and laying eggs etc. And they have no sting!

Morningside

23,827 posts

196 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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Willy Nilly

12,511 posts

134 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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Sounds great. I'm going to be watching this thread.

Nimby

2,819 posts

117 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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dickymint said:
Well nearly. Just opened my B-Day present and yep it's a Beehive.
If you didn't get a complete starter kit you'll also need:
bee suit and gloves
smoker
hive tool
wax foundation
spare frames
- and more when it's time to extract honey, but that can wait.

But most important, a mentor who can help out when things go wrong - and they will. Ideally someone with the same size frames as your WBC.

Most clubs will be starting their introductory courses around now so it's a good time to join. You can also get on their swarm list early.

Aloysius

807 posts

170 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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Superb !

The whole of our garden although not very big has been planted up with pollinators / wildlife in mind.

We`d love a bee hive but don`t have adequate space unfortunately.

V8A*ndy

3,687 posts

158 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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So!

Where do I get the Bees?

Six Fiend

6,067 posts

182 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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I helped my grandfather with his bees when I was little, and then Mum, when he had passed away. He'd kept them since just after WWII - loved whirring the extractor around and sucking the fresh honeycomb. We last produced our own honey in the early 90s but had to stop as the local vandals kept pushing over the hives on our allotment. They got stung to buggery the final time but it kept costing us our bees and the hive damage too.

A great and knowledgeable place to pop down to from Usk is the Quince Honey Farm in South Molton, North Devon. Fascinating stuff and the Exmoor honey is delicious smile

You can do a day of bee keeping too: http://www.quincehoneyfarm.co.uk/beekeeping-experi...

zb

1,606 posts

131 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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V8A*ndy said:
So!

Where do I get the Bees?
Don't ask in a pet shop. I asked and they said they didn't sell them, complete lie, I saw one in their window.

Nimby

2,819 posts

117 months

Tuesday 10th January 2017
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Tonsko said:
V8A*ndy said:
So!

Where do I get the Bees?
Local Beekeeper (contact local beegroup) will either sell you a nuc or could maybe get a swarm from the same place.
Not until mid-May at the earliest.

Morningside

23,827 posts

196 months

Wednesday 11th January 2017
quotequote all
Nimby said:
Tonsko said:
V8A*ndy said:
So!

Where do I get the Bees?
Local Beekeeper (contact local beegroup) will either sell you a nuc or could maybe get a swarm from the same place.
Not until mid-May at the earliest.
In remember my father being posted a queen bee complete with sugar lump for the journey.

Nimby

2,819 posts

117 months

Wednesday 11th January 2017
quotequote all
Morningside said:
In remember my father being posted a queen bee complete with sugar lump for the journey.
There will have been a few "attendant" workers in the package to feed the queen - she can't feed herself.
That would have been to replace a dead queen or to introduce a better one to an existing hive.

Unlike wasps or bumblebees you can't start a new colony of honeybees with just a queen - you'll also need thousands of workers - ie a swarm or a nuc.


Edited by Nimby on Wednesday 11th January 09:44

22

1,616 posts

104 months

Wednesday 11th January 2017
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What happens to a hive with no human involvement? How do the bees manage their own honey stocks? Obviously bees survived before humans started to keep them as hobbies/businesses. A (half-arsed) bit of research seems to suggest the bees move on after a period, but that's not always the case. There was a dilapidated but active (man-made) hive on a farm track near me, walked passed it almost everyday for nearly 14 years with my pooch (RIP my old mate). Although they were quite fond of it, the farmers say no one ever touched it, but sadly last year the hedge-cutting-tractor-thing wiped it out (contractor, not the farmer).