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elainemary 

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as much as I like and respect Robert Pickard, he is a neurologist not a bacteriologist. Did he tell you to Bailey change your colonies relentlessly in his talk?
I prefer also to treat my bees sensibly not put every barrier possible in the way for them to develop and thrive without constant, unneeded effort
No he didn't mention Bailey comb changes. But here's a virologist that does.

Fortunately after a couple of years of checking all my colonies in Spring & acting if I found a problem, I need to do it less. Highly recommend if it is found, as it works, speeds up their development and they thrive.
 

Erichalfbee 

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If I have a box where the frames really are falling apart I either Demaree or change one frame at each inspection. I find it really easy to do one frame out at the front one in at the back.
 

Erichalfbee 

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But here's a virologist that does.
This was posted six years ago. David has since moved his colonies onto foundation free and probably finds little need for shook swarming and wholesale frame changing. He used to post here, but alas does no longer, or we could ask him.
@pargyle is foundation free. Perhaps he’ll pop on with his take on this?
 

Repwoc 

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If you decide to buy the biggest extractor your can afford to cope with all the honey you intend them to produce it will be the worst season ever and they will eat their way through everything they store...
That happened to me last year :(
 

Erichalfbee 

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Rubbish - I would highly recommend people to steer clear of such 'advice'
I wonder how common nosema is? In 12 years of keeping bees I’ve only ever encountered it once and even that was in a nuc of bees I got from a neighbour which was on black frames
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I wonder how common nosema is? In 12 years of keeping bees I’ve only ever encountered it once and even that was in a nuc of bees I got from a neighbour which was on black frames
And let's not forget that a proper Bailey comb change was devised to be carried out on a seriously sick colony and the new top box was a full box of sterilised drawn comb, the intention was to get them on to clean sterile comb as soon as possible, without the unneccessary hard work of having to draw new frames as, by the time they had any pathogens in the old filthy comb would have been spread to the top box
 

pargyle 

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If I have a box where the frames really are falling apart I either Demaree or change one frame at each inspection. I find it really easy to do one frame out at the front one in at the back.
Oh my ... where does this desire to keep changing frames and floors come from ? ... The apiarist blog was years ago ... I can't believe he is still doing Bailey changes. Some of my foundationless brood frames were drawn at least 6 or 7 years ago, I'm sure I've got some in use with 13 (2013) written on top ..they are still in use and the bees use them. I only change out frames when they really need it and I don't think I've ever done a Bailey change or a shook swarm.

Indeed, you can call me a bad beekeeper if you like but at least half of my colonies are on the floors they were put on when the colony was started ... I don't waste time swapping or cleaning floors if the colony is alive and healthy. Bees don't do this in the wild - they are the cleanest creatures on the planet - if they are not happy with it they will clean it - same with frames.

I sometimes move out frames of stores left in spring and I will give them some new frames to draw in place of them but it's not really necessary. Just giving them work they don't need. I have no evidence to suggest they do better on new frames and comb - just one more beekeeping myth. I've seen people convinced that a queen will prefer to lay in new comb ... another myth as far as I can see .. probably brought about because people put new frames to be drawn out alongside the brood nest so she will be directed to the next frame to be laid up by her attendants.

And whilst we are on about it ... I've never had Nosema in any of my colonies - and I don't feed thymolised syrup either.

I did see this in the Apiarist blog and I would agree with it ...

" During a recent Bailey comb change it was noticeable that the queen first started laying in newly drawn comb on a foundationless frame, rather than the flanking frames with commercial foundation."

I have seen bees ingnore completely some frames that I was given that already had foundation fitted ... and draw fresh comb either side in the foundationless ones .... Eventually I took the foundation out and they drew the frames !
 
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Curly green finger's 

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Just starting out this year. And now with the generous offer of some local mentoring & help from curly, I'm much happier.
Starting with no expectations, other than to enjoy it, I know I'll make some howlers, hopefully none too harmful, and I'm sure I'll learn from them as you should do from painful mistakes.
So grateful for the forum, both for the information, and the introduction to Curly, so supported it to assist it to continue, learnt so much, forgotten lots more, though I'm sure it'll come back when the moment is right.
Mark
Don't have to many expectations from my mentoring, I'm still in my younger years of beekeeping from 2016 to now in the grand scheme of things is a blip.
But there is things I have learnt from mistakes which hopefully will help.

Mentoring from afar this last season has been hard work.
Making sure that mentorees understand what I'm suggesting they do has been hairpulling at times But I love a chalange and getting SWMBO to edit my notes has helped.

All I can suggest is read and reread books and watch videos and follow blogs.
And after all there is this forum, even the most experienced on here will learn something new even if they don't post.
C. G. F
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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I have no evidence to suggest they do better on new frames and comb - just one more beekeeping myth.
:iagree: I don't think anyone has - it's just what they want to believe to justify their fiddling about, and as for this'they draw out comb quickly and with increased vigour' - well they haven't got much choice have they? seeing as they've been dumped in a boxful of foundation, they're desperate to make room for the queen to lay, especially as it's invariably spring when this gets foisted on them and they need to replace the older winter bees
I've seen people convinced that a queen will prefer to lay in new comb ... another myth as far as I can see
:yeahthat: :rolleyes:
 

Cuckmere couple 

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My Goals / Plans for this season:
-Queen rear from 3 best colonies
-Requeen 2 colonies
-Source an AMM queen to add new genetics
-Swarm control by Demaree my ‘production’ colonies to maximise honey crop
-Swarm prevention : Mix of vertical splits and old queen to Nuc
-Equipment : Move colonies in each apiary onto same equipment; polyhives in 1 apiary
-Health: Test colonies for hygienic behaviour, use sugar shake for varroa monitoring and switch varroa control; practise more IPM
-Pass Bee Biology and Bee behaviour exams. Learn more about bee anatomy
-Support beginners / mentor beginner(s) in my local association
-Enjoy my bees 🐝
Nice plan...I need to reflect on my plans

The more I learn the more I can still get perplexed at range of options in front of me and harder to figure out the best way.

Swarm control for example. Last season colonies expanded so fast in the spring that I had to do a lot of swarm control and it felt like most of the flow was spent with splits using flow to build themselves back up, or a couple of Pagdens who rebuilt a whole brood box in a week and laid it fast too...all fine, but wondering how I could have gone about earlier preps to maximise production...maybe that’s my main plan....hmmm
 

ericbeaumont 

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I only wish I took the craft up sooner
Manley said the same, and ended up as the first man in GB to run 1000 colonies before the war (or so they say) and he didn't even like honey. He came from a farming background and I suppose the pressure to continue the family tradition was strong; when he took up bee farming and abandoned cows and what-not they thought him crazy.

Honey Farming: Manley wrote well and this true joy of a book is still valuable today.
 

mbc 

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If you find Nosema, look towards requeening that colony.
Not so sure about that, I think if you looked hard enough you'd find it's fairly endemic, I can't recall the figures from the random apiary survey but I'm fairly certain it's quite common.
Edit; Google is your friend:
Nosema prevalent in ~50% of apiaries.
 
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Curly green finger's 

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Manley said the same, and ended up as the first man in GB to run 1000 colonies before the war (or so they say) and he didn't even like honey. He came from a farming background and I suppose the pressure to continue the family tradition was strong; when he took up bee farming and abandoned cows and what-not they thought him crazy.

Honey Farming: Manley wrote well and this true joy of a book is still valuable today.
Ive had a look are northern books the only stockests they are a bit expensive on books, but some books you can only get from them.
I had 4 books for Xmas I'll see if I can sweet talk SWMBO to let me get it.

I know how he must of felt, my cousins think I'm a bit mad wanting to get rid of the stock, to be honest I'm done with farming sheep and cattle, this was one reason I moved away 16 years ago and started a life on the Clee.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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Ive had a look are northern books the only stockests they are a bit expensive on books, but some books you can only get from them.
I had 4 books for Xmas I'll see if I can sweet talk SWMBO to let me get it.

I know how he must of felt, my cousins think I'm a bit mad wanting to get rid of the stock, to be honest I'm done with farming sheep and cattle, this was one reason I moved away 16 years ago and started a life on the Clee.
try ebay, turns up fairly frequently - or bookfinder.com
 

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