Hi from Kyabram, Victoria

Hi all. I am a raw newbee. No hive as yet but I have one on order.
Browsing through this forum leaves me with a good feeling about this bee community. I see a great resource and heaps of very genuine advice. I look forward to being able to contribute once my hive arrives and I start to gain some experience.
My head is already spinning with so much new information to absorb. This looks like being a major journey.

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Welcome to the forum Ian, you will find lots of reading and good advice and tips freely given. Don’t be nervous about asking for advice, that is why some of us are on the forum. Find your local bee group[ to find out about you local conditions, climate and if there is any issues in your area. Enjoy the ride, it is very interesting as well as addictive. :wink:

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Hi Ian,
welcome to the world of bees. I hope you enjoy the journey.

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Thanks for the welcome Peter and Kim. I am sure I will have heaps of questions as time goes by.


I am from the United States. I live in a suburb of Los Angeles California (Whittier).

I have been a beekeeper for the last two years. I have been participating in the coursework that Flow provides this year after an Instagram author that I follow became a presenter. I have learned so much from the courses.

I have just purchased a Flow hive for next year’s bee season.

I look forward to learning with you in the Forum.

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Hi @Chloe,

I am about 100 miles south of you in San Diego. I have been keeping bees for well over 30 years, and keeping bees in urban San Diego for about 5 years. I have one Flow hive and 2 Flow supers. If I can help you with anything, please let me know. :blush:

Thanks for your reply! I also posted this question in the Beekeeping Basics. I am making decisions regarding Spring and I could use some suggestions.


I have completed my second year as a beekeeper. Last year I harvested wax. This year I harvested wax again and 50 containers of honey. My concern is that I have lost my colonies in November both years. My first year I purchased two packages and the second year I tried two nucs, hoping for better results.

I am very sad about that especially this year as my bees worked so hard! I am looking for some advise on what to do different next year.

Last year another beekeeper gave me a swarm she removed in November. I still have those bees. The problem is these bees are Africanized and too aggressive for me to open their hive.

Thank you for any suggestions you might have.

So sorry about that. Did you do Varroa mite counts using a reliable method like sugar roll or alcohol wash? Did you treat for Varroa? Counts in our climate are often pretty high. The most common cause for a late fall/early winter loss is Varroa infestation. I would plan to do counts and even to treat regardless next year.

Well, you have a couple of choices. One is to call the beekeeper who gave you the bees and ask for their help. You can try to requeen them with a gentle queen from a reputable supplier like www.ohbees.com. I would suggest an Italian queen. If they don’t have availability, call them - sometimes they have queens even when the site says that they are out of stock.

The other thing you can do is euthanize the hive. I would only do that if re-queening fails. I usually give a hive 2 chances at accepting a new queen, and if they won’t, there is no choice for me in an urban setting - africanized bees cannot be tolerated.

I have had wonderful package bees from Mann Lake for several years now, but even though they are “hygienic”, they do need treating for Varroa. I use Oxalic Acid, and occasionally Apivar. It greatly increases survival over winter.

Good luck and please feel free to ask any more questions that you may have. :wink:

Thank you for your suggestions! :blush: