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Author Topic: Is it best to put out some beehives, or just leave the local bees alone?  (Read 9880 times)

Offline CliffordK

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I've been trying to think of what it would take to help maintain the local honey bee population (and perhaps bumble bees and other related bees).

So, would it be best to build a hive, or a couple of hives, and try to capture a swarm.  Or, would it be best to just leave them alone?

I'm not a big honey consumer, but I suppose I could use it in my espresso.

If I do it, I would try to capture a local swarm...  somewhere if I could find one.  No need to bring in bees from far away to compete with the native bees, or risk bringing in diseases from another hive.

But, once captured, I would then have to try to keep my hive healthy, and mite-free (a recently imported pest).  Perhaps worry about other things too.

Or, would I be better off just leaving them alone to fend for themselves as they've done for millions of years without human intervention (as well as fending off the various imported diseases).
« Last Edit: 20/05/2011 09:30:13 by chris »


 

Offline imatfaal

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Unless you want the honey and the responsibility perhaps the best and definitely the prettiest option would be to talk to local apiarists and then set about planting and maintaining the local flowers that bees need to survive.  We have a firethorn on one side of the house and during the whole of spring, summer it is humming with bees (perhaps upto a hundred at a time) - they never cause us any trouble btw.
 

Offline Mazurka

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I would agree, bee friendly planting is well worth doing as is helping to provide nesting sites - even if the actions don't directly increase bee numbers, it will probably help biodiversity (i.e. some criter will take advantage of slightly untidy insecticide free refuge!
Some good advice at http://www.bumblebee.org/helpbees.htm

Honey bees are a very differnt species and need very deliberate tending which is a much bigger commitment than many people realise.  The best way (in the UK) would be to get in touch with yopur local bee keepers association.  http://www.britishbee.org.uk/ would be a good place to start.
Edit:[:I]Ok, I don't think the BBKA has a branch in Oregeon, but I am sure there is a similar local organisation or some neraby old gadge who can show you the ropes (or at least how to remove stings safely) 
« Last Edit: 20/05/2011 15:37:34 by Mazurka »
 

Offline Geezer

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Edit:[:I]Ok, I don't think the BBKA has a branch in Oregeon, but I am sure there is a similar local organisation or some neraby old gadge who can show you the ropes (or at least how to remove stings safely) 


Here's the Orgegon association

http://www.orsba.org/htdocs/home.php

 

Offline Geezer

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BTW, if you do keep bees in a bee hive, you need to make sure they beehive themselves.

(Apologies to the late Arthur Askey)
 

Offline CliffordK

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I would agree, bee friendly planting is well worth doing as is helping to provide nesting sites - even if the actions don't directly increase bee numbers, it will probably help biodiversity (i.e. some criter will take advantage of slightly untidy insecticide free refuge!
Some good advice at http://www.bumblebee.org/helpbees.htm
I'm very good at growing dandelions.  But, I don't see them on the list.  ???

Fortunately blackberries are on the list.  I can grow those too   :)

I've actually got quite a few spring flowers.  But, I'll have to watch things a bit to see how they fare later in the year, especially into the fall as the blackberries wane.

No problem keeping the honeybees beehaving in the beehive.  Offer them a smoke, and they're supposed to mellow out.

Here is an interesting article about some of the issues with beehives, and some low-tech solutions.

http://www.acresusa.com/toolbox/reprints/June04_beehive.pdf
 

Offline imatfaal

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Bramble jelly over honey any day of the week.


edit - just realised the above could be construed another way

- well I keep suggesting it to Honey, but she continues to decline my kind offer.
 

Offline Geezer

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BTW, bramble = blackberry
 

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