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Thats a nice link,I love this bit:

In 1943, the Ministry of Food announced that beekeepers qualified for supplies of sugar not exceeding 10lbs per colony to keep their beehives going through the winter, and 5lbs for spring feeding.


When it was suspected that most of the sugar wasn't reaching the bees because crops of honey were so small, someone had the bright idea of colouring the sugar green to prevent it getting onto the black market. This was soon stopped when the bees started to produce green honey!
 

jezd 

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oliver90owner 

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I saw on the net that sugar cost 9d for 4 lb in 1937 - obviously increased before the war - but sugar fed to the bees and sold as honey was still a good earner in those days! No trading standards breathing down one's neck in back then. I wonder if the green honey was any cheaper?

Regards, RAB
 

OXFORDBEE 

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Yup .. There was a lot of lime honey a few years ago. Then beekeepers found out bees move honey upstairs when the broodnest expands....
 

propolis 

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Alec Gale

Hi, seems to be little in print regarding the late Alec Gale the originator of the Gale hive, however I have come across one book, A W Gale the man and the business by David Clements.
Some interesting facts from the book.

1934 The worst year ever. Only ten tons of honey from nine hundred stocks.

1935 By this time the business employed eight staff. Alec Gale took Gales of peterborough to court to try and stop them trading under the 'Gale' name. Unfortunately he lost the case as they had in fact used the name first.
(I think I read somewhere or other that Gales the honey packers had started to use the name in 1919)

1946 Efb discovered, thought to have been picked up in the New forest where the bees were taken for the heather.

1947 everything destroyed and started from scratch again with new combs and fumigated hives. ( a pointless exercise as some time later Efb was contracted again)

Wax, in a good year there could be one ton of wax for sale after making their own foundation.
Heather, the best crop in any season was twelve tons.
Yields, the best years 1955... 89 tons. 1959... 86 tons. 1961... 88 tons.
Queens, eight hundred were produced each year for their own use. Bee type,
Alec Gale had started with black bees but change to using Italian and Buckfast, as he found they served his purpose better.

I will have to leave it there as my typing skills are limited.
 

beebreeder 

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most of gales hives were around salisbury plain, Oliver Field a retired commercial beekeeper from salisbury plain may know more, as I am local I will keep in touch
beebreeder
 

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Just finished reading Oliver Field's book.
He talks about Gale a few times in it.
 

Hombre 

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Why, that would be "Honey by the ton", published in 1963 by Barn Owl Books of Taunton.

I just asked my friend as I felt he would know all about it and sure enough he did. :)
 

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If you have an interest in Gale then a new book I have also just read is "The world of the bee farmer"
by John Rawson who also worked with him in Salisbury.

ISBN 978-1-904846-25-3

£15,And a very good read as it's only been published in the last year.
 

Hachi 

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has anyone got/seen any plans for a Gales hive?
 
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has anyone got/seen any plans for a Gales hive?
It's the same as a standard National but longer...takes 14 frames and a dummy board, which seems a bit stupid, why not just 14 frames? However I have abandoned using them, because I found the bees just didn't stretch the nest that far, so the outer two frames were fairly unused. I also had only 2 supers per hive which isn't enough and I wasn't able to get any more (I could have made some but decided to abandon for above reasons before I got round to it). The most useful thing about them now I find is the very wide spacing in the supers is handy for transporting frames for extraction and without spacers for storing frames in winter.

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It's the same as a standard National but longer...takes 14 frames and a dummy board, which seems a bit stupid, why not just 14 frames? However I have abandoned using them, because I found the bees just didn't stretch the nest that far, so the outer two frames were fairly unused. I also had only 2 supers per hive which isn't enough and I wasn't able to get any more (I could have made some but decided to abandon for above reasons before I got round to it). The most useful thing about them now I find is the very wide spacing in the supers is handy for transporting frames for extraction and without spacers for storing frames in winter.

Frisbee
This is quite interesting ... my long hive has 14 x 12 frames and they have filled it out this year to about 13 frames ... they were a medium sized swarm in June and my frames were foundationless. The outer frames are used only for stores by the bees (but there is no queen excluder to prevent her from laying in them if she wanted).

So ... although you no longer use them I'm interested to know whether the outer frames were not used by the bees because the colony was not big enough or because you put supers on before the outer frames were filled ?

There is some evidence that 'modern' bees have been 'encouraged', 'bred' or 'acclimatised' to live in smaller colonies ... for beekeeper convenience. Splitting hives to discourage swarming and national sized brood boxes contributing to this situation.

Although, it seems to me that Finman is right about encouraging the establishment of BIG colonies ...

My long hive will allow 22 frames in a horizontal box and I currently have 10/11 seams of bees with a large amount of capped brood which, I assume, will give me a sizeable overwintering colony. My hope for next year is that this colony (assuming a good season) will expand to use the full potential 22 frames and if this happens I have plans for supering the hive. But ... if your experience with the Gale hive (and all 14 frames in the brood box not being worked) follows through to my hive then I am in trouble !!!

HENCE MY INTEREST !!!

PS: I suspect the dummy board is just there to allow it to be pulled out to permit easier frame manipulation ... quite a nice design aspect so that people cannot inadvertently stick in another frame and defeat the object of the dummy board.

A dummy board in a brood box of this size would be essential anyway to curtail the size of the brood area whilst the bees built out to the full size of the box so it's a clever idea for that reason as well.
 
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