Saturday, February 25, 2006

Booyow.

Greetings all! Rob, Leah, and the Skifflings are off to New Mexico until next Wednesday, so I'm holed up here in the piling snow, typing away to all of you - and what an update we've got for ya! Hold on to your seats!

Two days ago we recieved our massive shipment of woodenware! Seriously - this is great news, and we're about to jump out of our skins. All of the equipment seems to be in great condition, and the deeps, bottomboards, and hive stands are all made of goodlooking, well-constructed pine, and none of the other stuff seems to be beat up or broken (so far as we've seen up to this point at least). The stuff also got to us super-quickly - thanks Betterbee! The gear is currently taking up residence in the Rob's basement.

Meanwhile, although we've still got plenty of time before the girls get here, we've also still got quite a bit of work to do. There's a lot of foundation to put in a lot of frames. And a lot of frames to put together. And cleaning up/repainting/painting of supers. And building an elevated "hive table" to put the two hives on. And possibly putting up a fence. What about that garden? Hmm, still much to be discussed. And probably more to buy at some point as well.

We're going to go broke. As friends, yall are required to buy some of our honey whenever we actually get enough to collect.

MORE NEWS - In addition to the woodenware, we also just got our confirmation receipt from Singing Cedars Apiary (the place we're buying the nucs from) in the mail. The apiary is located down in Orwell, VT - about an hour south of us. So, we're golden. Everything is in order and the two nucs of Carnolian bees will be waiting for us whenever Roland and Deborah drop us the call this Spring.

Whoop!
Wombat

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Look at This!

The turning of the new year has already promised to be an exciting one for Rob and me. Like Zerg Drones poised on the verge of mutating into hideous and terrifying vessels of carnage and destruction, something more palpable than anticipation seems to be hatching inside of us. If this past Fall we were nibbling at the proverbial bit, with the completion of our order a few days ago we are now officially chomping at it.

In addition to the trillions of dollars worth of equipment we purchased online the other day, we’ve also managed to get quite a bit for free as well. Despite the cash we’ve dropped starting this little endeavor, it definitely could have been worse. There’s still a lot of work to do before the girls arrive (e.g., cleaning, painting, nailing, etc.), but other than occupying a lot of time, the work will be welcomed. Besides, we can always listen to my homeboy Rob’s phat beatz as we’re enduring the labor in slightly warmer temperatures.

This sucky winter hopefully portends an early spring. Where was that infamous Vermont winter you Yankees kept trying to scare me with all summer? This is a Carolina winter plus a few extra inches of snow and some wind. Well, maybe next year.

Anyway, this paragraph marks a hallmark in my life – the closing of my very first blog entry. I hope the 4 of you enjoyed it!

Yours from under the tarp,

Michael

Here is a list of parts that Michael and I bought from one of the large beekeeping firms. This along with 2 nucs for $85 USD each is what we have spend so far.

Qty Description Total
1 Inner Cover
Item :ICL1 Price : $7.95
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$7.95
2 Select/ Assembled Wooden Hive Body
Item :DHBSA1 Price : $18.25
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$36.50
2 Cedar Reversible Bottom Board
Item :RBBC1 Price : $13.50
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$27.00
2 Cedar Hive Stand for Wooden Hives
Item :STAND3 Price : $10.95
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$21.90
2 Universal Entrance Closure
Item :UEC1 Price : $1.95
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$3.90
2 7" Hook-End Hive Tool
Item :HT2 Price : $11.95
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$23.90
5 Deep Crimp-wired Foundation
Item :DCW1 Price : $7.95
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$39.75
5 Shallow Crimp-Wired Foundation
Item :SCW1 Price : $4.95
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$24.75
4 Deep Wooden Frame Wedged/Grooved
Item :DFG1 Price : $8.50
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$34.00
4 Shallow Wooden Frame Grooved/Grooved
Item :SFGG1 Price : $8.50
Ship Via : UNITED PARCEL SERVICE - RESIDENTIAL GROUND SERVICE
$34.00
Subtotal: $253.65
(National,State and Local taxes) Tax: $0.00
Shipping:
$40.97

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

TOTAL: $294.62

Monday, February 20, 2006

Starting Out

Last year I ran into my cousin Bill and found out that he was keeping a hive of Russian Bees on his property. I couldn’t resist dusting off a very old beekeeping outfit and going out for a visit. As I was walking out to the car, Michael opened the gate and asked me where I was going. Then he started talking about the bees and in that early twenty southern twang said, “Wow dude, bees are so cool…can I hitch a ride.” So I drove him out my cousin’s and we spend the afternoon inspecting Bill’s babes. Bees are a very interesting things. Something about their similarity to zerglings and the sound of thousands of insects buzzing are way cool.

This winter I talked to my wife and we decided to go buy 2 hives. Michael agreed to pay for ½ of the expenses. After searching all around the country for a couple of Russian nucs and coming up empty, I eventually decided to put a deposit on a couple of local Carniolan nucs. The story of this little adventure I will have to wait for another day. Michael and I spent a couple of hours ordering some replacement parts for hives and $400 USD later we are now waiting for the first days of spring. I thought it might be interesting to keep a record of the hives during the first year or so and write about the adventures and misadventures of a beginning beekeeper.

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