I am wondering what the schedule is for local meetings. I would love to come and see what's up and begin to learn more about bees. I feel like a beekeeper without a hive and am fascinated and hoping to tend a hive one day~
OK, so I am a new guy here too. In fact I have no hive / bees... I only have the willing to learn at this time. I live in Eagle Point in an area that keeping bees in my yard would not be acceptable to my neighbors (or my wife). I attended the keepers meeting on Monday the 3rd... but the real info I was looking for didn't come up until the close of the meeting and was not lined out in time. I am looking for a keeper to take me in and teach me the trade (as a hobby). In reality I am not even sure if this is a hobby that I want to do. I don't know how much investment of time or cash is involved in it. Additionally... I have no land (that I know of) to keep boxes on. Can a guy just head off to the hills and set up boxes on, say, BLM or forest service lands? There are so many questions that I have and more that I don't even know about yet. In short, if you live in or have hives in or near Eagle Point... let me know. (I'm going to walk out to some hives and leave a note one of these days) Thanks, Kyle
I hope, Alexandra, that you made it to the meeting. There was a lot of complicated material discussed, but the best thing would be to find someone who could "take you under her wing."
Kyle, I live between Central Point and Gold Hill, so I a quite a bit away from where you live. I would not recommend putting hives on BLM or Forest Service lands. The lands get logged and a hive (hives) would likely be moved, sold, or killed. Another problem is bears. They will demolish a hive/hives. Beekeepers have some success with electric fences, but I would not recommend it for a hobbyist. If you have a friend with some land, you could put hives on their land and offer "pollination services." (Your bees pollinate their flowers/crops and they give your bees a place to stay.) Usually beekeepers supply honey to the family on whose property their bees are located.
If you have 20 hives or less, you can sell extract and sell honey without any inspection.
The big problem is to treat the bees for the pests which can kill them. As you heard in the meeting, there are many different opinions on how best to do this. I fear the discussion of it at the meeting was a bit intimidating.
As I wrote to Alexandra above and as I said in the meeting, the best thing is to find a mentor. In the meanwhile, I would recommend you continue to attend the beekeepers meeting. Even if the meeting is a bit dry at times, afterwords, you can talk with some of the beekeepers who have had bees for awhile. Dr. Andrew Watson and Julian Lewis are two I would recommend. If John Jacobs is there, he has a lot of experience as well.
Post by Julian Lewis on May 6, 2010 20:41:51 GMT -7
Kyle, We have a hive out at the extension center that we will be going into periodically. This would be a good opportunity to experience working with a live hive and see if it is something you want to pursue. Also, there are beekeepers out in the Eagle point area that probably wouldn't mind you observing/helping when they work their hives. That is also a good option. Any Eagle Pointers want to help out? Regards, Julian
On my way home from work yesterday, I stopped at the apiary... In my opinion, it was a mess. I am not sure if anyone is actually tending to the bees. There were extra boxes, parts frames & lids all around. There were what looked to be 2 functioning hives. There was even a box out there without a lid and the bees were all over the frames in it. Maybe robbing??? Anyhow, I hope that I don't offend anyone, but it just looked un-kept. I did leave a note on one of the boxes. I put it in a zip lock and set a rock on it on a lid of a (active) hive.
P.S. ... I went online and found that the owner of the land (126 acres) is the State of Oregon.
Update, I found out that these hives are owned by a local guy for business. I have tried to contact them without luck. What laws (or rule of thumb) are out there about taking over apiaries on public land and getting them up and running again? Like I said before... these look abandoned and or neglected.
Last Edit: May 13, 2010 10:22:44 GMT -7 by kgmac311
Thanks Larry, I did finally get a response from the owner / operator... he said that they are his, and to leave it all alone as it sits. Judging from his care and maintenance I will not be looking to pick his brain about this for a hobby.