Jump to content

Judging the origin of swarms - yer right!


Recommended Posts

21 hours ago, PhilEvans said:

I have been 'caught' with this, kind of, but it was not a case of having made up my mind already, it was a case I was trying to explain what I currently had heard, been told, watched or witnessed, and was told I wasn't listening. I was actually listening, but was getting conflicting information, and was trying to make sense of it. Being a beginner, the learning curve is very steep, but remember that it is not a case of taking everything everyone says as the only way to do it. Everyone has to evaluate what they are hearing from many sources, and work out which of those will work for their apiary, and individual hives at that. 

I have had some harsh comments directed at me, and it is very offputting, and sorry but that should not be acceptable by anyone's standards.

I have 3 hives, and they all are very different in the way they behave, and the layout and timing of what is going on in them. So to be told I am not listening, or am just an amateur, when I am simply trying to work out which of 10 answers I can successfully apply to hive 1, when that method would probably destroy hive 2, is not fair at all. 
Add to that trying to explain what is happening, and trying to use the correct terms etc, takes time, as everyone knows only too well. Everyone on here was once starting with their first hive, and trying to make them work in a hobby that doesn't have a single standard protocol.

@tristan I want to keep a few hives as a hobby in my backyard, which to me is hobby 'beekeeping', as opposed to commercial 'beekeeping', or even having a hive in my backyard with no idea what to do 'beekeeping'. It is all 'beekeeping' and will never bee the same 'beekeeping' that you have going on, or M4tt or Grant, or anyone else. So please, your comment "rather than beekeeping', is precisely the kind of comment that you, as an experienced beekeeper, should not be throwing around at us newbees... It just makes you sound like you know best, and anyone without your experience is just a deaf amateur. I have to call you out on that. Please, with all due respect, and knowing that you do have significant experience and knowledge, please drop the condescending attitude towards those just starting out. I know you know heaps. I don't, OK, which is why I am here in this forum.

 

22 hours ago, tristan said:

only want to do what they are interested in rather than beekeeping.

 

this is a common trap for beginners.

often their expectation is a lot different from reality. sometimes they are interested in one small part of beekeeping and focus on that.

the catch is they need to learn all of the basics of beekeeping but because their interest is only one thing, they tend to ignore what they are not interested in. ie they don't learn beekeeping.

but they can't do what they are interested in without learning beekeeping. 

so the end result is typically failure, a back yard with dead hives.

 

i usually find it takes a few knocks, maybe a bit of embarrassment, before they stop focusing on that one thing and start learning beekeeping. 

sometimes just a few words on a forum does it, sometimes its years of dead hives and other beeks cleaning up the mess before they catch on.

 

the problem these days is there is so many hives that someone failing causes problems for other beeks.

i'm sure you wouldn't like your hives ruined because of someone else down the road wasn't doing their part.

 

conflicting information.

that can be a real problem. especially as new beeks tend to be marketed to by certain groups to bring them into the fold.

fortunately forums plus the beekeeping bible is a great help.

 

 

 

 

Edited by tristan
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 56
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

You can tell refugees/swarms from a commercial yard by all the black eyes, band-aided wings, crutches, and dropped Tramadol  tabs

I have been 'caught' with this, kind of, but it was not a case of having made up my mind already, it was a case I was trying to explain what I currently had heard, been told, watched or witnessed, and

Can't say for your situation, however we have had 2 swarms each season come thru our property in town. not far from orchards. Guess is the swarms are coming from there. Last one arrived last week, mov

7 minutes ago, PhilEvans said:

Are you able to give examples of this please?

 

I’m not sure an example is needed, who wants a ruined hive? There are both dead outs and AFB within 5km of where I am. Having lots of swarms around doesn’t reassure me.

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, cBank said:

 

I’m not sure an example is needed, who wants a ruined hive? There are both dead outs and AFB within 5km of where I am. Having lots of swarms around doesn’t reassure me.

Another example of a condescending comment. Please, it looks like you are also a beginner as well. I ask questions because I need clarification. If you can't answer a question that is helpful, please don't answer...

I understand AFB, but have no idea what a dead out is, and swarms are not necessarily the fault of the beekeeper. I would like to know what things other nearby beekeepers could do that could affect my hives, and also so I know better what not to do with mine... 

Link to post
Share on other sites
39 minutes ago, PhilEvans said:

Are you able to give examples of this please?

 

For your information. A dead out is literally a hive that has died out. 

 

Examples

dead outs - the first thing a beek needs to ask and answer is why and how. I process of elimination then begins, based on what you observe. Identifying why and how is vitally important to your neighbouring beeks

 

If it's AFB, has it been robbed out, in which case the dead out could cause major problem to hives in close vicinity by creating more AFB

 

Looking at the hive can tell you if it was a Dronelayer (lotsa drone cells, some usually unhatched), gone queenless, starved, varroa, etc.

 

failing to treat appropriately for varroa, causes problems for your neighbours. As your bees could reinfest others hives.

 

hive placement needs to be appropriate too so that you don't create problems with your neighbours or the public. If too many complaints occur then councils could make it difficult for beeks to keep in urban areas.

 

theres a few, I hope that helps.

 

 

 

 

 

  • Like 2
  • Thanks 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
48 minutes ago, PhilEvans said:

Are you able to give examples of this please?

A beehaver is required to be registered and only has to have their hive checked for AFB once each spring. If that's the extent of their bee husbandry and their bees get AFB then they will likely succumb before anyone notices. The dead hive will be full of infected honey which will be robbed out by other bees. The hive is now a dead out and all surrounding hives are at risk of developing AFB.

 

A diligent beekeeper will notice AFB early and destroy the hive well before the infection can be shared. Does that clear it up?

  • Like 1
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

No problem, there's nothing more heartbreaking than pouring petrol into a hive and listening to them die. Then burning the whole thing lock stock and barrel. 

 

Hives dont one have to be dead to cause problems, sick ones, or failing ones can cause just as many problems. We've gotta keep asking why, and ask for help if we don't know. One thing about working with others is there's always someone to ask for a second opinion.

 

Sometimes we we may sound abrupt, but mostly it's to try and give heads up to people so they learn by our mistakes and experiences, rather than their own.

 

Edited by Bron
  • Agree 2
  • Good Info 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, tristan said:

one of the basic but difficult concepts for people to understand is that the only way to stop disease/varroa spreading is for you to not spread it.

that may sound insulting but theres no fences for bees. its up to each beekeeper to do their best to not spread disease.

 

 

Thanks for that and I fully understand. I don't find the explanations insulting at all. I am in this to get the most out of my hive, so that my hives don't fail, and that I am not responsible for any other hives failing. I personally don't understand how anyone could just want a hive in their back yard and do noting with it...

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, PhilEvans said:

Are you able to give examples of this please?

one of ours. we had a site with pms in a few hives. fortunately caught it early enough.

then i find someone down the road lost all their hives because they did some half baked mite treatment. instead of trailing it on one hive, they did it on the lot and didn't do any testing to see if it worked.

 if it was a hobbyist with a few hives that robbed those dead hives, the hives would have had much higher amounts of mites come in and would have died or been very close to it.

 

this is also known as re-invasion of varroa.

Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, PhilEvans said:

I personally don't understand how anyone could just want a hive in their back yard and do noting with it...

lots of "interesting" people out there ;) 

 

but in all fairness its not always a case of not doing anything with it. its more of what someones gaol is, why they want bees. their motivation and drive.

the "shine wears off" all new things. thats when that motivation becomes really important for them to get out there and do things right, even when the weather is bad, kids complaining, work needs doing etc.

  • Like 2
  • Agree 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
4 minutes ago, tristan said:

one of ours. we had a site with pms in a few hives. fortunately caught it early enough.

Can you explain what did/may have happened for your site to get to PMS? My understanding is that PMS is caused by a really bad varroa infestation. Is there something you did/didn't do, or were not aware of that allowed the buildup of varroa to cause the PMS? How fast can PMS happen if levels of varroa increase? If their are website pages that already explain this, I'd be happy to go read through them rather that someone post a possibly long explanation here - you know, don't re-invent the wheel...

Link to post
Share on other sites

One of the occupational hazards of being a commercial beekeeper is the public, and the perception that "we need to save the bees". The number of people who think they can have a beehive and get honey with minimal effort is scary. Essentially a garden ornament, like a bird bath.

 

Just about any other profession can go to the supermarket in their work uniform and not end up in long involved conversations about how they'd like bees in their garden or worse inane ones like "are you a beekeeper? (I get this a lot cos I'm not a burly bloke) or worse and most common, "Do you get stung?" (If I had a dollar for everytime I'm asked I could just about retire!)

 

Yes, I could take it off, but actually, I dress pretty light under my suit, and wee dresses look pretty silly with steel capped boots! I'm knackered, just need food, trying to be polite.

  • Like 4
Link to post
Share on other sites
14 minutes ago, PhilEvans said:

Can you explain what did/may have happened for your site to get to PMS? My understanding is that PMS is caused by a really bad varroa infestation. Is there something you did/didn't do, or were not aware of that allowed the buildup of varroa to cause the PMS? How fast can PMS happen if levels of varroa increase? If their are website pages that already explain this, I'd be happy to go read through them rather that someone post a possibly long explanation here - you know, don't re-invent the wheel...

they got a lot of mites from robbing all the dead hives from down the road, from the guy who did the dodgy mite treatment.

 

PMS varies a lot. its basically the viruses doing the damage and that will vary depending on the viruses themselves and how healthy the bees are etc. theres no exact level of mites where you will get PMS. i've had hives with the same amount of mites but one had pms and the other didn't.

however its been noted that the amount of mites required to get pms is very little these days compared to when varroa first arrived. i think mark goodwin mentions around 30-40 mites per 300 bees in the early days, where a couple years ago i would see pms down at 7 mites per 300 bees (at 40 mites the hive had collapsed and was nearly dead).

 

have a look at the green? varroa book by mark goodwin.

Edited by tristan
  • Thanks 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I find that new queens do not really like to swarm...they usually work with the space they’ve got...I have had a new queen in onl6 two boxes over a season and I still got a lovely box of honey and the queen had not swarmed.   I think new beekeepers need a new laying queen...it gives you a season before they will try to swarm.  I would suspect a nuc put into a hive box that swarms not long after you have put it in...would mean that the queen was an older queen and she wasn’t prepared to wait to draw out new comb but a new laying queen would.  That is from my experience...what do others think?   And I am definitely a full time commercial beekeeper..but most of my income is from urban hive rentals..

Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Bees said:

I find that new queens do not really like to swarm...they usually work with the space they’ve got...I have had a new queen in onl6 two boxes over a season and I still got a lovely box of honey and the queen had not swarmed.   I think new beekeepers need a new laying queen...it gives you a season before they will try to swarm.  I would suspect a nuc put into a hive box that swarms not long after you have put it in...would mean that the queen was an older queen and she wasn’t prepared to wait to draw out new comb but a new laying queen would.  That is from my experience...what do others think?   And I am definitely a full time commercial beekeeper..but most of my income is from urban hive rentals..

I have had new queens in yards that are all nucleus colonies swarm because they out grew the boxes faster than I anticipated. Lots of brood, honeyflow and they run out of room, they swarm.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...