Packaged Bees Ship Date

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Charlie Sequoia created the topic: Packaged Bees Ship Date

I'm ordering a package of bees this year from Georgia, and I'd love to know the best time to have them shipped here. Is April too early?

In that same vein, if anyone knows of a VT beekeeper who is selling medium frame nucs with quality local queens, please let me know.

Thanks for you help!
Kim
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Peter Hadeka replied the topic: Packaged Bees Ship Date

Hi, If you drop down the Marketplace tab there is a listing of local sources for bees, equipment etc. My opinion is that April might be a little early for receiving a package. Late April might be OK. The concern is that there is little or no nectar available then and you would have to feed them for an extended time. There are plenty of places in Vt. to get nucs, which would be my choice. Are you a new beekeeper ? Are you starting with undrawn frames and a new hive ? If so, your package will need a lot of feeding to get some drawn comb to let the Queen start laying. A nuc would already have frames drawn out and eggs, larvea etc. all ready to go. What part of Vt. are you located ? There may be a local club or mentor available for guidance. Think Spring !!! Peter
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Charlie Sequoia replied the topic: Packaged Bees Ship Date

Peter, thanks for your help.

You make a good point about the weather, the lack of nectar sources, and all that comb needing to be drawn. I'll take your advice and wait until May to be on the safe side.

This will be my second year beekeeping, and will be my second hive. My first hive I got locally as a nuc and it went great. This year, I have sworn off deep hive bodies and I am going to use mediums for everything. I haven't been able to locate a local nuc for sale that offers medium frames. Thus, I thought I'd give package bees a try.

I'm in Grand Isle - the banana belt of Vermont! - so maybe I'll try early May. Again, thanks!
Kim
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Peter Hadeka replied the topic: Packaged Bees Ship Date

Just a thought. Why not have one deep, so you could use a nuc, and then add two mediums for hive bodies. Problems with packages are that you need to have comb drawn and then it is 21days before any new bees emerge, all of that time some of the original bees are dying. There is also the time for the Queen to be accepted (several days) by the “package”, or perhaps not accepted. A nuc has all the bases covered and gets off to a much better and quicker start. There are several beekeepers in the northern Vt. area that sell quality nucs. Good luck. Peter.
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