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Promotional videos and how much work to keep bees?


#1

My wife and I got excited about the flow frame on the indigogo campaign, so we ordered a full set for delivery in December. In the campaign video they say no more suiting up and tearing the hive apart. Just what we wanted, easy honey and pollinators for the garden. They made it look so simple and effortless. Even little kids right up to the hive while harvesting. December delivery, set it up and start in the spring, harvest in fall if lucky, seemed reasonable. Perfect for the would be bee keeper without much time/interest in stirring up a bunch of bees

As I study up in preparation of getting my hive, I now find that you still need to suit up and tear the hive apart fairly regularly. There is regular maintenance, feeding, and checks that need to be done, requiring you do exactly what they were saying you didn’t need to do. Their caveat was “to extract honey”, conveniently not mentioning regular, and frequent maintenance.

I feel we were misled into believing we didn’t need to suit up and tear the hive apart at all. My wife would enjoy the benefits,but has no time/interest in the maintenance of the hive. I’m out of town too much to be able to do the work as needed. Oh, and the $88 shocker for shipping, not mentioned until after we committed. . .

I’m not sure what I’ll do now, but $688, for a box of wood and plastic to sit in the garage taking up space, is a lot of money. Wondering if I’ll get a bill from the shipping company for import duties too. I’ve had that happen before.

:frowning:


#2

I think you will find you can sell your gear without too much trouble. As for me, I’m really looking forward to suiting up a couple of times a year to give my girls a proper viewing. I’ve wanted to keep bees for so long and the flow frame concept is fantastic as far as I am concerned.

A couple days ago I put out my first ever bait hive and I’ve another in the shed almost ready to go.


#3

Twice a year?
Don’t Australian bees swarm?
Here in the UK we have to look in our boxes weekly from April to September


#4

Well…you are rather naive…of course in Australia you can get away with inspecting just a few times a year…as they don’t have some of the pests we have in Europe. Their bees still swarm though and if you live in a built up area…you will need to try and control that. It didn’t occur to you to read a book about looking after bees? Or look it up with Google? With many bee colonies you can be around the hive without protection. Certainly, with some colonies you could be around them without protection. If you watched the promotion videos it showed them doing a hive inspection…they were suited up. If you bought a dog…wouldn’t you find out how to look after it, feed it, train it? The non interference refers to the extraction method…where you don’t have to go into the hive…take out the frames to extract using an extractor. Like all creatures…they need some looking after…especially if you want a honey crop. I am sure you will find many people willing to buy your equipment.


#5

Hi dangerous. First the disclaimer. I am an absolute novice. The twice yearly inspections is the advice from the DPI (Dept of Primary Industries). It related to the complete examination of the frames looking for signs of disease. My current thinking is that I will be lifting the top super every three weeks to look in the top of the brood nest for drone comb.


#6

I think you are in for a rude awakening! Get a book on beekeeping and read it all…twice. If you are just checking for disease…a few times a year may be ok. There are a lot more things you need to check on.


#7

@dangerous @Horsehillhoney - some people just want the honey not to care for the bees, they think it a cheap, easy alternative.

[quote=“Horsehillhoney, post:4, topic:2960”]
you are rather naive
[/quote] I’m afraid there will be a few on here like that.

@sciencemaster you can always sell on here to someone who wants them, I’m sure there are beeks here who want more!


#8

Well …not cheap…but you are right. A lot of the Flows were bought by non beekeepers. There is plenty of time for those people to actually decide whether they want to keep bees themselves. My advice would be for them to find a local beekeeper…who will look after the hive for them…help to educate them as they go along…for a portion of the honey. They might even find that they like being part time beekeepers.


#9

or they could just become a pain in the neck like me :bee:


#10

I’m new to bee keeping and have ordered a flow frame light to go on a hive I just set up.

Before I ordered the flow frame I was well aware of the need to inspect hives regularly and the other equipment needed which included protective clothing and veil.
From what I gather if your bees are placid you could attend your hive and harvest honey without any protection, but it is still recommended to wear a veil and have a smoker handy.

The flow frames are to make the extracting of honey easy as long as they work as they say it will.

All this information was easy to obtain before I ordered so I knew what I was getting into. :smiley:


#11

This post was flagged by the community and is temporarily hidden.


#12

Hi @samat3, sorry to hear you felt misled. I know some of our videos show only the easy parts of beekeeping but we are trying to be careful to explain that there is still a lot to learn about beekeeping. If you decide to learn about beekeeping there are a lot of great people on the forum who can help point you in the right direction and support you on your journey.

If beekeeping is not for you, you can probably sell them fairly easily. If you would rather look at getting a refund please email our support staff: http://www.honeyflow.com/contact/p/3 here is our returns policy: http://www.honeyflow.com/shop/refunds-returns-policy/p/141#a3


#13

In Australia…they are asked to check the drone brood for varroa…as so far it hasn’t reached there…it is a monitoring by the government. So that is why they say a couple of times a year. It’s probably not what Beekeepers actually do…for all the usual reasons for inspecting. In the UK I we are encouraged to inspect weekly during swarm season. Also because of varroa, EFB and AFB. I have found that you can go longer between inspections if you have a good awareness of the state of the hive. It is easy to get caught out though.


#14

Hi Jake, I have to admit, that sounds reasonably fair.


#15

There is a great video with Micheal Bush called Top Bar Hives. At the end of it he talks about the Flow Hive…illuminating for new beekeepers.


#16

Hi Hhh, I met a bloke yesterday, only because I had bee boxes on the back of my truck. He told me he had one hive, he never gets into the brood, he recently re-queened it, I don’t know how he did that. Also he robbed the honey. He reckons that will stop them from swarming. Spring has started & he’s going away for 6 weeks. He told me roughly where he lives, so I’ll expect a ph. call from that area in the near future.


#17

@ DextersShed, I may be an absolute novice but I do have a long career’s worth of research skills. I plan on inserting a modified frame into the top of the brood nest, The frame is designed to encourage drone comb. In turn, the drone comb is attractive to pests that breed in drone comb. Every three weeks, the modified frame is removed and the drone brood cut out. Here’s the link. http://scientificbeekeeping.com/fighting-varroa-biotechnical-tactics-ii/

Fingers crossed, we don’t have varroa in Oz but we do have plenty of other critters. I think by setting up some integrated pest management, I might just be able to stop my beekeeping ignorance from hurting the hive,


#18

Don’t forget that the queens need lots of drones to mate with…or no bees. This can only work during the time the bees want drones…what about the rest of the year? When they don’t make drone brood? In the USA…there is a movement to stop treating for varroa. They say…if they hadn’t started…their bees would by now be able to adjust to them…instead they treated and now they still have bees which can’t cope with varroa. There are people in the UK who feel the same. If everyone stopped treating …we would be putting varroa resistant drones in the air. It has already happened in some places…and in a few years the bees can cope with varroa. I am on the fence with this…I don’t want to lose my bees to varroa…but I do want varroa resistant bees! So this year several of my hives are not going to be treated…


#19

Slightly off topic, but renowned bee researcher Dr. Thomas Seeley has recently said the following about the importance of swarming and the negative impact of “controlling” swarms.

A couple excerpts:

“The prevention of bees’ natural swarming is an intervention against the nature of the bees which leads to damaging effects”

“Much of beekeeping practice goes against the nature of the bees and enforces conditions for which bees were not created”

The article is in German, but it’s easy to translate in your browser:


#20

We didn’t do any research at the time of pledging due being a day or so from the apparent end of the funding period. We didn’t know it would be extended, and extended, and extended so long, or we would have done research before committing. But, we didn’t want to miss out on what appeared to be a great thing.

It’s not so much not being interested on my part, I have been reading up to learn, but my work WILL keep me from doing the required maintenance. I just wish the promo video had mentioned there would still be a need to opening, and regular maintenance, so people like me wouldn’t set themselves up for failure. I may take you up on the refund option.

And I gotta say, the books I have been reading, are real good for insomniacs. Almost as good as government pubs.