seramasJuly 22, 2009

It has been a long time since I've have a bee hive close by. An 80 year old Beekeeper has placed a hive of wild bees that he collected as a swarm earlier this year on the back of our lot. There have been very few bees in the area and last year our garden didn't produce like it should have. This year the bees have been very busy. We have more quash, tomatoes, cuks...better pollination. The following link is to a short video of them coming and going about their work. Enjoy!

Here is a link that might be useful: The Busy Bee

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We put two hives out this spring--new to beekeeping. We also noticed an increase in our vegetable production, and we have more flowers than before. The nicest thing is that our neighbors (we're on a farm and "neighbors" mean people within a couple of miles) have noticed the same thing!
We're going to extract our first honey this coming weekend. Wish us luck!

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 3:20PM
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I also had a joyful bee experience this year. I noticed a lot of activity in a cavity tree near our house this spring. By the time I had discovered it, whatever colony had chosen it was established. I was a little dismayed, because it didn't look like typical honeybee activity or flight patterns, and was worried that the creatures might be something like yellow jackets.

But several of them found their way into a window and buzzed around a lamp at night, and when they expired, I took a close look and found the pollen sacs and bee antennae. We had ourselves a honey tree. I took the bees to the extension department the next day, since they didn't look exactly like the hive dwelling bees kept by an orchardist nearby. The agent said they were feral bees, and so given the delicate situation many colonies were in, we decided to leave them to their tree. This is the first honey tree I've seen in forty years and was thrilled to think that they still existed around here.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2009 at 12:04AM
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brendan_of_bonsai(4b AK)

Good to see you posting again Seramas.

There is a bee keeping forum here on gardenweb and if you haven't crossposted I'll bet they would love to have you post there too.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2009 at 3:43AM
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(I watched Mr. Q sing, too. I love to hear Bob Whites.)

    Bookmark   July 25, 2009 at 10:57AM
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velvet_sparrow(Zone 5b, Gardnerville, NV)

Very nice! I'd like to have bees, but my husband is deathly allergic so it's not a good idea. :)

I've also noticed a downturn in fruit set, for the last few years I've had to go around with a dry child's watercolor set paintbrush and 'pollinate' my nectarine & blood orange trees myself--if I don't, I get a miserable crop.

Love the crowing in the background!

Velvet ~:>

    Bookmark   July 25, 2009 at 8:40PM
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When you have 147 Serama Roo and 40+/- other Roos of different Breeds, not to mention the CornishX started to crow at about 8-9 weeks old (they are very LOUD) there isn't more than a few seconds between crows. I love it! Then when the hens announce the arrival of their eggs, it becomes quite lively from 11am to about 2pm.

    Bookmark   July 25, 2009 at 9:55PM
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sheryl_ontario(Muncho Lake, BC z2)

Great videos. Nice sounds too. I watched all five, while listening to my own rooster crowing. I want to have bees one day too, when I have more time.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2009 at 7:17AM
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Don't be so quick to give up on bees. I have fifty hives in my backyard. I can walk right up to them including directly into their flight path without being stung. I've had bees for seven years now and I have yet to be stung in my backyard unless I was doing a full inspection. My kids have both been stung but it's the typical sting on the foot while running in the field stuff and has yet to happen anywhere near the hives.
In short, if you buy gentle stock you shouldn't have a thing to worry about.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2009 at 6:34PM
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When I read the post title, I was afraid it would be negative, someone trying to get rid of an uninvited colony. You all have given me hope that maybe the general public realizes their value.

I want to raise bees one day soon too--even took a small course. Then I found out our neighbors uncovered three separate hives living under their outdoor sauna and apparently killed them. I was sick! Wish I had had the knowledge and equipment to capture them. But I didn't find out till after the fact anyway.

They say it's a bonus to capture ferals because obviously they have developed some immunity or at least ability to cope with all the diseases and mites that nearly wiped out our wild population and didn't do much for beekeepers' hives either.

Actually, for the record, at least in Texas, it is illegal to kill wild honey bees because they are endangered. You're supposed to call a "bee rescuer." But I don't think the general public is even aware of that.


    Bookmark   July 26, 2009 at 10:50PM
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I believe that beekeepers cause and spread many bee problems from hive to hive by using short cuts and cost cutting procedures. The biggest thing is the tool that is use to loosen frames from the hive body needs to be sanitized between hives, but they usually are not. Those who use gloves should have a clean pair for each hive worked on. The list goes on and on. These little things when overlooked can be the cause of big problems.

    Bookmark   July 26, 2009 at 11:31PM
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When we had beehives (when I was a kid)My dad had kit cases that were labeled with each hive #. In the kits was tools and gloves for each hive. When I get my own bees, which I really, really want that is what I will do. When we were done we always sanitized all the tools, kit case and replaced the gloves.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2009 at 12:27AM
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