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2 colonies better then 1. Why?

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martin.henwood 

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In order to place my lone beehive on an allotment I had to gain permission from the local parish council. The permision is for one hive only.

I read on these forums (or is it fora) that 'two colonies' is recommended, for the bee management and welfare purposes.

I would like to approach the council to get permission to establish a second hive. Can anyone help me to make the arguement, why are two hives so much better than one from a bee welfare and management point of view.

Regards
Martin
 

SER 

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Hi Martin.

I started with two nucs last year and lost one over the winter, I'm now going to split that one into two or more as soon as possible.
Two hives give you so much more scope for things to go wrong and allow you to work around problems.

If you read up on 'test frames' it'll give you some
idea of how useful a second hive can be.

If one hive suffers for some reason and becomes weak you could possibly use the second to strengthen it.

Also if you loose one hive over winter and that's your only hive you become a beeless beekeeper!

I'm sure more experienced people will be along soon to give you many more advantages.

Si.
 

victor meldrew 

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To try to convince the council to allow an extra hive, I would try to keep my argument simple .
Fistly . I would point out that a colony needs stability to offset the possibility of swarming .
To do this you need(from time to time) to add/subtract materials IE eggs/ brood/ food frames etc. This applies vice-versa ! Explain that two colonies are the standard norm to have such materials on hand (this is necessary as they can't be obtained on demand from any other source )
Please don't use the phrase nuisance swarming or nuisance anything else :).

When the dust has settled and hopefully you have your permission it should be pointed out that you may need a nuc hive to off set swarming , this being a transient item as colonies can be re-united thus keeping your hive quota within the prescribed limits :cheers2:.

John Wilkinson
 

Rosti 

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John has provided you with a succinct argument to use. It may be possible to avoid the argument all together.
There are designs of bee hive that house two colonies - the beehaus for example. You could with some ingenuity creat an outer frame within which you have two back to back nationals? True the geometry would make it a liitle more difficult to work and you could not give ideal orientation to both hives, but hey it's a start.
Your restriction is on hives not colonies if I have read your post correctly.
 

oliver90owner 

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The beehaus, for all they say, is really a single colony hive for other than the likes of tberni. Single colony with artificial swarming facility built in.

If there is a problem with a colony it will need to be moved away - before there is trouble. So an alternative location will be needed anyway.

I would suggest your other colony is located at your back-up site for the present time.

That would give you more time to satisfy any doubters at the allotments, before you start to try to increase on the site. Walk before you try to run, is my advice. You sound as though you are a new beek anyway. If that is the case, you will need either some very docile bees or a slice of good luck with just the one hive in situ.

Regards, RAB
 

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