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Fish-ti-cuffs

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Honey Bees
« on: December 30, 2016, 03:25:57 PM »

In keeping with my theme of trying every hobby out there at least for a while, I plan on trying to keep honey bees this spring.
Anyone have any advice/tips? I'm in the middle of winter research with books, videos, forums. I've talked with a few online places that ship bee packages, but has anyone ordered a package, or have any experience with any companies? Most of the sites that I talked to want you to put a deposit down, then when it gets closer to shipping time, pay the balance.
I plan on making a top bar hive, so dont' want to order a NUC.
Brett
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Brett Lewis
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"It's on like Bing Bong, Jack" --Uncle Si

Dire Wolf

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Re: Honey Bees
« Reply #1 on: January 02, 2017, 04:26:59 AM »

Did you see Saturday's Outdoor Wisconsin?  They had a segment on bee keeping.
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scrimshaw

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Re: Honey Bees
« Reply #2 on: January 02, 2017, 11:19:09 AM »

In the last year or 2 ,fleet farms have been getting bees. They also have hive parts, tools and other equipment.  I think they come as 3 lbs and a queen. I have also done hives as Nukes. (i think they came from a crivitz bee group) Which is like a small starter hive . I prefer the 3 lbs and a queen.  I have given up , bears have wrecked things a few times in my yard and I was too lazy/cheap to put the effort into an electric fence.
Most years  that went Ok I would get about 2 gallons of honey. i have enough in the basement for about 10 years  .
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Fish-ti-cuffs

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Re: Honey Bees
« Reply #3 on: January 02, 2017, 01:48:36 PM »

Thanks Rick, i'll see if i can find that video Online.
I talked with another forum member who had offered me some help (thanks Kevin). I think i'm decided on where amid when to get the bees, now i just need to make the hive, i'm still debating a top bar hive or Langstroth hive.
I do have bears wander through the yard every couple years in the spring, i'll have to keep that in kind when setting the hive.
Thanks for the tips,
Brett
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Brett Lewis
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"It's on like Bing Bong, Jack" --Uncle Si

michimac

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Re: Honey Bees
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2017, 10:46:50 AM »

I've ordered package bees with VERY mixed results. Keep in mind, most bees from commercial suppliers are Italians and are adapted to warmer temperature and few pests. I HIGHLY recommend searching out a Michigan or Wisconsin bee breeder that uses bees with a Russian background. There is a ton of breeding going on with Russians to help breed in mite resistance. This can also bring northern hardiness. I recently had a long conversation with the owner of Rhode's Farm about this very topic. https://sites.google.com/site/rhodesbeefarm/home
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