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SW Michigan Horizontal Hives - Sans Treatments

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  • SW Michigan Horizontal Hives - Sans Treatments

    Hi everyone.

    I'm Nick, I live in Southwest Michigan, and I am a recovering package-buying beekeeper.
    Three years of doing that, three years of Georgia bees dying for various reasons. PSM, SHB, mice, condensation, and bad beekeeping too I'm sure.
    I'm ready to try something different this time.

    I have 8 swarm traps built, and ready to be baited and set out in various places throughout my property and other spots I drive past frequently.
    Four are KTBH nucleus boxes, four are Layens-style swarm traps.
    Currently I have 3 KTBH built, and I am nearly finished building 2 Layens hives (19 and 14 frame).
    Planning on insulating the heck out of all the hives for more consistent temperatures within the hive bodies.
    I've read OTS Queen Rearing a few times now and am planning on putting some of Mel's techniques into play, but I also don't plan on doing forced brood-breaks.
    Reading everything else I can get my hands on about beekeeping and bees, especially treatment free beekeeping: Les Crowder's book, Fedor Lazutin's book, Tom Seeley, etc.

    As of right now, I have no bees.
    I don't plan on buying bees to get them.

    I know some of the orchards near me will bring in commercial hives for pollination. I know these bees will swarm.

    I also live very close to state forest land. I hope there are bees living in those trees that will swarm.

    So, hopefully I'll have things to update this thread with. I'll post when things happen.


    (cross-posted this on Beesource as well on their TF forum)
    Southwest Michigan (Fennville)

  • #2
    Sounds like you've got a great foundation to begin from. I'm looking forward to hearing your results with your equipment. Personally, I've only ever used Langstroth hives but I'm not opposed to trying out new stuff.

    Anyway, Welcome to the forums. Glad to have you!


    • #4
      Welcome Nick!
      Neill Sayers
      Herbhome Farm
      Arkansas Ozarks, USA
      Zone 7a


      • #5
        Welcome! I have Langstroth's (enough for 4 hives) I will continue to use for experimental reasons, but I'm building my own Layen's style hives this year from Sharashkin's site. I'm way up in the 48 parallel of Montana near Canada. I'm interested to see which are more successful as all my Langstroth's died this harsh winter (low populations and insulation. They had very low mite counts). Good luck and I'll keep tabs on you!
        Kalispell, Montana Zone 4a
        Certified Master Beekeeper