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Call for experiences

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  • P.H. Rankin Hansen
    Hi All, Let us liven up this group a little - it is only as lively as the participants ;o) We would dearly love to hear about your experiences with topbar
    Message 1 of 3 , Jun 13, 2004
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      Hi All,

      Let us liven up this group a little - it is only as lively as the
      participants ;o)

      We would dearly love to hear about your experiences with topbar hives, or
      plans to build them.

      We also need to do something with the links page, so could you please add any
      links to sites with topbar content that you know of.

      We also have a photo section, where you all are more than welcome to upload
      any pictures of topbar hives.

      The group homepage is found at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TopHive/

      --
      Ping.

      venlig hilsen / best regards

      P.H. Rankin Hansen
      Grædstrupvej 53, Grædstrup
      DK-8740 Brædstrup
      (+45) 7586 1688
    • gkohler1
      I started keeping bees this year for the first time. I m using top bar hives I built and bees I collected by putting an ad in the yellow pages under the
      Message 2 of 3 , Jun 22, 2004
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        I started keeping bees this year for the first time. I'm using top
        bar hives I built and bees I collected by putting an ad in the yellow
        pages under the heading of "Bee Removal". I charge people a modest
        amount (less than an exterminator) for the removal service. This is
        to cover the ad and the cost of the hive materials.

        I've given swarms away to a keeper friend and have for myself four
        hives in the bee yard. All four of my TBHs are about a meter long.
        One of the four has angled walls. I built that one last week and put
        a swarm in it on Saturday.

        This year has been an experiment. I'm looking forward to expanding
        my ad next year and building hives over the winter. I don't know if
        I'll take any honey this year or not. One of my colonies built their
        comb crossbar. I'm thinking about just robbing them completely this
        fall and possibly combining them with another colony or perhaps
        killing them off. I've not decided yet and won't for a few months to
        come. Any suggestions would be appreciated on this.

        On Saturday I had two swarms and only one empty hive to put them in.
        I put one of my swarms in the empty hive and was going to set the
        others free but I was checking my other colonies and noticed one was
        extremely weak. I didn't have time to properly combine them with
        some sort of paper divider so I just dumped my swarm (about 3-4 lbs
        or 1.5 kg) into the hive. Bees were flying everywhere. I had to
        book out but plan to return this week sometime. I can't wait to see
        how things went.

        I bought my bee veil, gloves and smoker off ebay back in Feb. I
        switched from the hot plastic helmet to a golf hat. I bought a bee
        suit from Dadant but found that a long sleeve shirt over my tee and a
        pair of jeans is much more comfortable. I think the risk/reward is
        worth it.


        Some of the things I've learned this year.

        1. Bees sting people.
        2. Bees can sting through the very thick leather gloves I own.
        3. Bees don't sting people who don't bother them.
        4. A shop vac will suck in bees but it kills them also.
        5. The swarms in June are larger than the ones in May.
        6. When a dog gets stung by a bee it doesn't run away, just in
        circles while more bees continue to sting it.
        7. If someone calls you for a swarm don't delay. The bees don't
        stay put for too long.
        8. Don't keep bees in a green plastic container in the hot sun.
        They'll die.
        9. Bees don't fly at night.
        10. Everybody has a bee story.


        Number 10 is the big one. I've been on about 20 swarm calls this
        year and almost everybody has a story they want to tell about how
        they got stung by a wasp once or how they or someone they know will
        swell up like a balloon if they get stung. Some talk about their
        grandfather who kept bees or the man down the street. They all want
        to know what I'm gong to do with the bees and most are pleased that
        I'm not going to kill them. Some people don't want to pay to have
        them taken so I do it for free sometimes.

        Right now I'm not treating the bees for mites or anything. This has
        been a low budget experiment. Perhaps I'll do something later in the
        season or next year. I've not decided yet. Next year my goal is 20
        new hives. Right now I'm hunting for places to keep them. Does
        anyone need some bees in the St.Louis area for your garden?

        Gary

        --- In TopHive@yahoogroups.com, "P.H. Rankin Hansen" <ping@p...>
        wrote:
        > Hi All,
        >
        > Let us liven up this group a little - it is only as lively as the
        > participants ;o)
        >
        > We would dearly love to hear about your experiences with topbar
        hives, or
        > plans to build them.
        >
        > We also need to do something with the links page, so could you
        please add any
        > links to sites with topbar content that you know of.
        >
        > We also have a photo section, where you all are more than welcome
        to upload
        > any pictures of topbar hives.
        >
        > The group homepage is found at
        http://groups.yahoo.com/group/TopHive/
        >
        > --
        > Ping.
        >
        > venlig hilsen / best regards
        >
        > P.H. Rankin Hansen
        > Grædstrupvej 53, Grædstrup
        > DK-8740 Brædstrup
        > (+45) 7586 1688
      • P.H. Rankin Hansen
        ... Hi Gary, Having just come online again after a break, I would like to thank you for an interesting writeup. This kind of stories are just what we need --
        Message 3 of 3 , Jul 11, 2004
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          On Tuesday 22 June 2004 19:20, gkohler1 wrote:
          > I started keeping bees this year for the first time. I'm using top
          > bar hives I built

          Hi Gary,

          Having just come online again after a break, I would like to thank you for an
          interesting writeup. This kind of stories are just what we need

          --
          Ping.

          venlig hilsen / best regards

          P.H. Rankin Hansen
          Grædstrupvej 53, Grædstrup
          DK-8740 Brædstrup
          (+45) 7586 1688
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