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Need quick advice...

 
M Johnson
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Ok. I am not really prepared but I have bees arriving today or tomorrow

I got a starter kit from Mann lake. It's painted
And only has one super. It has frames and came with a sheet that looks like honeycomb for each frame

I'm trying to understand if I should use these or not. None of the frames have a strip on them to start the comb if I don't use these sheets

After listening to the podcasts about bees, I figure I am starting wrong by having a painted hive, not having a hut for it to be under, ordering bees from a company instead of local or catching a swarm.

So help me get on track please knowing I have the bees arriving and want to give them the best chance.

I will be placing th under a tree right by a pond with good poly culture around the edges and fields with clover all around. We also have flowers out. Still have more to plant to keep the bees happy but it's a start

Thanks for the help
 
tel jetson
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package or nucleus hive?

if you're committed to going the bee-friendly route, consider dismantling your frames and just using the top bars. the two boxes you've got will work for now, but I would suggest at least two deep hive bodies for the brood chamber, and three would be better.

you can use some of the foundation to make starter strips, but those aren't really necessary.

purchased bees aren't exactly a cardinal sin, but you're starting at a disadvantage if you don't plan to treat. steel yourself against the possibility of losing the colony this first year, but remember that even if you do, it won't be a total loss as the comb that they'll build is likely to attract a swarm next year.

if they do make it, they may well throw a swarm this year or next, which means you'll end up with a naturally-mated queen and you'll be on your way toward locally-adapted bees.

anyhow, not the end of the world. if you do intend to follow this advice, put your hive someplace inconspicuous and don't go telling the local beekeepers association that your hive doesn't have movable frames.
 
M Johnson
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I have bee keeper friends who go the natural route but I couldn't get ahold of them for advice. I'll talk to them about more details once I can get ahold of them. Thank you for the help so quickly.

So I dismantle the frames, All of them? Should I have all the frames in there? I believe I put the queen cage between two frames and uncork it and put a marshmallow in it according to the book, that doesn't sound like something Paul would like.

I bought a package with a queen.
 
tel jetson
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yeah, I would dismantle them all. or, if you're handy, rip some top bars out of scrap wood and sell the frames to somebody else to recoup some of your expenditure. sell the foundation, too.

the standard queen release method is fine. a couple of marshmallows worth of artificial feed isn't going to cause any serious problems.

and get "I don't think Paul would like it" out of your head. replace it with "what's going to be best for the bees in the long term?" you'll be better off cultivating an actual thoughtful relationship with your bees than an imaginary one with a mythical authority figure you want to gain the approval of. might seem like a small difference, but I've found attitude to be very important where bees are concerned.
 
tel jetson
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and yeah, use all the top bars. you could leave one out of the honey super if you like. you might want to leave the super off for a couple of days to give them a chance to build some comb in the brood chamber.

also: I recommend making a top cloth out of burlap or canvas or another durable cloth made of natural fiber. treat it with flour paste as in a Warré hive. much gentler to remove than a crown board.
 
M Johnson
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I only have one box which my friend thinks was odd for a starter kit. I'll be getting another one. I don't understand how to separate the queen.

So I don't need any foundation at all? I don't mind breaking apart the frames if it's the right way to go. Don't really care about cost right now, just right direction.

Trust me, I don't think Paul is a mythical person from above. But I trust what he thinks about these subjects, that's why I listen to the podcasts and visit the forum. If I didn't feel he had the bees best interest in mind I wouldn't be posting here. His four podcasts on bees gave me a good idea of what he thinks and I am on board, which is why I think I've gone down the wrong path a bit already.

Thanks for the help
 
tel jetson
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M Johnson wrote:
So I don't need any foundation at all? I don't mind breaking apart the frames if it's the right way to go. Don't really care about cost right now, just right direction.


right. you don't need any. if you think you'll maybe want to pull combs out for any reason in the future, it would be wise to cut little starter strips out of the foundation to put in the top bars so they're more likely to build straight comb. if you're committed to leaving them alone, though, don't worry about foundation.

the queen: pull one plug and replace it with a marshmallow. hang the cage from a top bar. a rubber band would work fine. some twine would work fine. I would avoid using metal. after they've released her, you can remove the queen cage, or just leave it there. it seems unlikely to cause any problems.
 
I agree. Here's the link: http://stoves2.com
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