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Disastrous year for honey

 
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lottie



Joined: 11 Aug 2005
Posts: 5059
Location: ceredigion
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 08 7:24 pm    Post subject: Disastrous year for honey  Reply with quote    

Anybody living elsewhere had a good honey year? The weather here has been appalling---what honey the bees made earlier they've used, they've swarmed for no reason and without much warning hiding queen cells, the new queens haven't mated succesfully etc.. Last year I had nearly 90lbs of honey from 3 hives--this year I've 6lbs from 7---left the rest for the bees. Some people here who've been keeping bees 30 years don't even have a jar of honey to put in the end of year competition and also had the excessive swarming til the hives have emptied and non laying queens--in fact compared to some I've been lucky---hopefully after combining I've 4 decent colonies with laying queens to go into the winter---is it just us in a small area or is anyone else suffering?

Pel



Joined: 29 Mar 2008
Posts: 2366
Location: Sennybridge
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 08 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

dad was comenting on the black queens in the area, that they both destroy queen cells, and he's nearly tried every trick in the book, he has one queen who is 5 years old and still laying good and one who is 3 years old and neither of them are ready to be over thrown (he used much more bee technical terms that made sense). Not sure how much he has got off them, i know he is making mead, and drinking 3 yr old mead as we speak.

Tavascarow



Joined: 06 Aug 2006
Posts: 8404
Location: South Cornwall
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 08 8:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

2nd year in a row its been bad here.
No surplus.
Three strong colonies & one nuc but as you said all the early surplus eaten by the bees.
They are working like crazy now but what they are pulling is only going to be winter stores.
Not sure what they are working as the ivy hasn't started blooming yet.

lottie



Joined: 11 Aug 2005
Posts: 5059
Location: ceredigion
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 08 8:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I'm feeding them 'til they're stuffed at the minute---finally had a few good days---they are going barmy taking pollen from some courgette plants--hoping the ivy is good as I honestly believe they are healthier and better on honey rather than the artificial feed---it supplies the calories but lacks the nutrients.

Slim



Joined: 05 Mar 2006
Posts: 4688
Location: New England (In the US of A)
PostPosted: Fri Sep 19, 08 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Don't know much about it, but a friend said he extracted between 16 and 17 pounds from a medium super.

random



Joined: 01 Jul 2006
Posts: 158
Location: Skåne, Sweden
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 08 5:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

It's not been the best year here in Sweden either. The late spring early summer harvest wasn't too bad, but the big harvest I usually get at the end of summer just never happened. I think I'll only end up with around 40lb this time. It was around 40lb per hive last year.

joanne



Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 7086
Location: Morecambe, Lancashire
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 08 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I'm going in today to take off whatever they've got in the super's - it could be nothing they could be full but I'm going to feed them anyway till they are stuffed up on Ambrosia - apparently they take it down like nothing else

It's been a pretty awful year around here as well - Many lost colonies with Nosema in spring - so it's been a year of consolidation and re-build

alison
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 29 Oct 2004
Posts: 12908
Location: North Devon
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 08 9:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I am going to do mine later.

I think I have lost one hive completely now, just going to check it is really true.

The nuc was building up nicely when I last looked so going to feed, and treat, and do general winter preparations, like the mouse guard.

lottie



Joined: 11 Aug 2005
Posts: 5059
Location: ceredigion
PostPosted: Sat Sep 20, 08 9:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I lost a hive bought as a very strong nuke from Thornes this spring----no warning---building up fast needed supering---a week later--gone. A very weak one I didn't expect to survive last winter is the only one I've taken honey off---they've had their fumagilin and apiguard, well fed---the rest is in the lap of the gods.

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