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Learning from mistakes

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David P 

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So taking inspiration from another thread altogether.

And that third option is one of the best,you can go on a course, and read to learn the basics,but you will not beat learning by your own mistakes,sometimes simple one's,sometimes not, sometimes infuriating,and no course on the planet can teach you everything,because you will never know it all, or stop learning with beekeeping.
What silly mistakes have people made this year that they wont make again?

To start the ball rolling

Put a clearer board under two supers which happened to contain a few frames i had my eye on for "Frame ready for extraction" at our branch honey show. But forgot to replace crown board before putting the roof on. By the time i came back a week later the bees had moved virtually the whole lot back downstairs via the cone escapes in the roof. Definately wont make that mistake again.



David
 
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The nuc I was given was small due to swarming because 2 queen cells were left in after the split. Not my mistake but something I will remember when I come to do my own AS.

My mistakes were putting a second brood chamber on a 4 frame nuc thinking the bees would draw a set of frames for next year. This gave them too much space and I think it held them back. A week after the second brood chamber was removed the bees were covering the top bars, and they hadn't done up to that point. I also had a problem with wasps flying into the entrance. Once I put the entrance block in and moved the frames with brood on up to the entrance the wasps left the hive alone.
 
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Most of my equipment is second hand and therefore old.........so old in fact I have an unmodified National box..........sorry I digress. I've spent hours repairing and painting the outsides, but didn't check the insides.......wasps gained access to a super through the ventilation holes in a roof because the mesh had corroded and rotted away, so in a week wasps had robbed out the super.

Frisbee
 

Blair 

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Ive made to many this year, and would fill the whole site. My main one was after one of my hives swarmed, i presumed i was queenless, after a week, introduced a new queen, they swarmed again......
 

aseeryl 

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Definitely marking the QB and releasing her into the hive before the paint dried. They killed her and the colony is still recovering.
 

Haughton Honey 

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Lots of Commercial hives.......
1. I bought a nuc a month or so back and didn't inspect it before taking it away. They swarmed the day after I brought it back and I found a capped QC in there when I had a close look! :svengo:

2. I didn't expect the wasps to be so bad this year and lost a weak colony to the bleeding jaspers after a few days of furious robbing. Two others had to be united to strengthen them. :boxing_smiley:
 

JCBrum 

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I think the biggest mistake I made was helping out a 'lady in distress' ........

As I was leaving the apiary one day a woman approached me (happens all the time :) ) and said are you a beekeeper ?

I said I was, (but in reality, I didn't have any bees of my own at the time. I was being taught by looking after a colony at the club apiary).

She said her Father used to keep bees, but he had died, and there were some bees in hives in her garden. She felt sure there was honey, and could I check the hives for her and take off any supers which could be extracted.

I thought, well it should be possible to brush the bees off and put the supers in a shed or something for later extraction, so I agreed to visit her garden and see what I could do.

When I got there she pointed down the garden and said 'you'll find them down there', 'let me know when you've finished'.

Off I trot, and find half a dozen WBC's, absolutely BRIMMING with bees. This looks good I thought.

Well, you've never seen such vicious blighters in your life. They were EVIL. Of course I didn't know about bees like that and resolutely proceeded with my chivalrous duties.

They rose up en masse and attacked in waves of squadrons with murderous intent, I went on with the job as fast as I could, but I had only brought a 'smock-top' bee-suit with me, and the b*ggers went down my wellies and up my trouser legs like Hannibal through the Alps, elephants and all, it felt like.

I got the job done, and rushed round the back of the garage and took my trousers off regardless of impropriety. Smoking my trousers, and other unmentionables with maximum blast, I made them desist for a few seconds, and then I went and hid in the car while I assessed the damage.

I got 19 very painful stings and all the time was thinking - 'what the hell happened there then ?.

A few days later at a club meet, when I had re-gained the ability to walk, I re-counted my adventure to Stan (long-time member). You mug ! He said, she pulls that one every year on unsuspecting new members, we all know about those murderous bees, you should have asked us.

I'm a bit more wary with strange bees these days.
 

Hombre 

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I think the biggest mistake I made was helping out a 'lady in distress' ........

I got the job done, and rushed round the back of the garage and took my trousers off regardless of impropriety. Smoking my trousers, and other unmentionables with maximum blast, I made them desist for a few seconds, and then I went and hid in the car while I assessed the damage.
JC, I remember the picture of the sting near your eye that you posted a while back. Did you not have the camera with you that particular day?

It gets better. . . :cheers2:
 

oliver90owner 

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Early split 4 ways for a large colony and got the queen in the wrong place. Found her but she obviously jumped ship (or I forgot which frames she was on) and ended up with 3 good q/cells which were consequently broken down leaving and one section with emergency Q/cells.

Change of plan meant the queenless bunch reinforced another colony 3 miles, or so, down the road, so not too much lost, but considerably messed up my initial plan for maximising colony numbers early in the season. Daresay it will happen again, maybe not the identical scenario but something similar.....

Regards, RAB
 

JCBrum 

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JC, I remember the picture of the sting near your eye that you posted a while back. Did you not have the camera with you that particular day?

It gets better. . . :cheers2:

Ha ha, yes but I didn't have the wide angle lens .... :p
 

Rosti 

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Stupid things to do with bees No:348.

Go out to re-fill miller feeder at night, suitably mellow after red wine. Help the bees who were cleaning the last of the syrup out of the feeder and blow them off fingers, falling to ground somewhere?

Bees return to nearest warm dark place with upward entry. Beek returns to house impressed by his sympathetic efficiency! Bit of an itchy leg? actually quite a bit of an itchy both legs?

Removes said trousers to discover a dozen or so of the girls have popped back for a night cap. They were very well behaved, only potential sting in tail is that I am now awaiting the police visit so I can explain why outside backdoor in underwear late at night apparently combing the hair on my legs.
 

mark s 

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my 1 and only mistake so far was when i got the nuc from mark,like a complete novice i inverted the contact feeder over the top of the hive,and lost most of it through the hive,god knows wot the bees must have thought.
i do it over a bucket now,then give it to the girls;);)
 

Rosti 

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my 1 and only mistake so far was when i got the nuc from mark,like a complete novice i inverted the contact feeder over the top of the hive,and lost most of it through the hive,god knows wot the bees must have thought.
i do it over a bucket now,then give it to the girls;);)
Ah, Mark, I'd forgotten that one, yep, been there too. My bees still talk about the mysterious 'Sugar Sunami'. Always used a rapid after that until I got the Millers built.
 

admin 

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Sorry guys only just finished dinner.
The thread will be sorted.
 

admin 

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That looks a bit better !

At this rate we are going to need a few milk monitors onboard to delete posts when I am not around..
 

Bcrazy 

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Beware the hand of Admin strikes a deadly blow.

Ha Ha

Regards;
 

JCBrum 

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We are all (voluntarily so far) subject to his wrath.

I'm going on a queen rearing tuition session on fri/sat Bc, if I see any interesting specimens I'll bear you in mind. (for microscopy) :)

JC.
 

Bcrazy 

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Enjoy your course I am sure you will find it interesting.

Thanks for the thought re microscopy.

Regards;
 

the naked beekeeper 

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Ah, Mark, I'd forgotten that one, yep, been there too. My bees still talk about the mysterious 'Sugar Sunami'. Always used a rapid after that until I got the Millers built.
Lol.
So I'm not the only one!!

I had the same problem...I inverted the feeder and walked away...next thing I see when I turn around is dozens of bees licking syrup of the face of the hive..I lifted the roof off and the whole crown board was flooded with the stuff!! I ordered 2 rapid feeders the very next day....much easier!

Other mistakes I have made (this is my first year beekeeping for myself)...I have been moving the hives bit by bit as where I had sited them originally was totally impractical. After several moves, I didn't want to keep distressing them with smoke, so I lifted a hive with no smoke and I had no gloves on.....I got some 14 stings to both hands..I had fevers and the wife had to do most things for me for a few days!!

Moving this particular hive in the first place was a joke...it was a swarm I caught in my back garden and I knew that my site was up the road but I hadn't prepared it...anyway....one night when I saw them in there, me and a friend went to move it..I hadn't used a hive strap before and the brood box fell off the floor first off....then we had to walk some 100 yards down the road, over a stile and over barbed wire, with the two of us holding it tight.....I left him holding it tight as I ran back for a stand.......anyway, this whole thing took some 45 minutes....my trouser crotch got ripped to shreds and then later the night where I was using such bizarre and small muscles to carry the hive and where I had it the floor and brood box clamped with my fingers for dear life, I couldn't evcen lift my toothbrush to my mouth!!!!

Another time with this very same hive, I got some 15 stings when they got under my veil as well and got stung under the eye!!
 

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