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Welcome to Beekeeping.cc

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Hi, and welcome to beekeeping.cc’s first blog post. This is very exciting for us. We’ve been working very hard on this for several months now. We could have just used blogger or Wordpress as our blogging engine rather than building a custom one, but where’s the fun in that? Besides, I don’t care for upgrading a WP blog, and once this proves itself, all of our blogs will be rebuilt.

We’re using CakePHP as the framework. I’ve done a few websites now using CakePHP and find it easy to work with and to get the results I’m looking for.

The design of the site was handled by my graphic designer, wife. I think it’s just a beautiful and useful design. I’m especially fond of the tab bar.

I’ve wanted to build this site ever since I got my first hive last year. Initially, I see it as a place to collect interesting stories, articles, how-to’s, links, videos, and research as it pertains to the field of beekeeping. I’m still new to the hobby and find tons of information on the subject. My hope is that new hobbyist beekeepers and seasoned commercial beekeepers will find the site useful and informative. I’m open to feedback and welcome your comments, either on individual posts, or one of the contact methods mentioned on our contact page. If you have things you think should be added here, make a suggestion and we’ll see about adding it. We already have a few ideas of some additional features we’d like to add to the site to make it a little more “social” in nature, but those will be just a little while longer. For now though, the main way for interaction is here and on Twitter.

On a personal note, we currently have 5 hives in our apiary. To my knowledge, they’re all Italians. Hive one’s bees were a gift from an experienced beekeeper to help us get started in late spring of 2008. Hive 2 was purchased as a complete hive at the end of summer 2008. They did not make it over winter. Hive 3 is our first package purchased at the beginning of spring 2009. Hives 4 and 5 are splits we did early spring 2009 from Hive 1. Hive 6 is a small swarm that showed up looking for a home in April of 2009, so we gave them one. In 2008, from our one hive we were able to extract approximately 15 quarts of honey. I don’t think that is too bad for a new hive and new beekeepers. This year, 2009, we have had a lot of rain, and all of our hives are “new” which has resulted in low honey production. But, the hives are looking good in terms of population growth. Maybe not surprising to many, is the fact that the best-looking hive we have is the one that we’ve intervened with the least. We have fed most of the hives using top feeders. But Hive 5 was a split that we just left alone. The ones that were top fed stored a lot of the sugar away since they couldn’t get out and forage. As a result they wound up a little honey bound. But the hive we left alone built up their stores and population naturally. It’s only a small experiment from a second year beekeeper, but it appears that human intervention isn’t always necessary.

We currently use Langstroth style hives exclusively, but I’m interested in other styles of hives. Most of the experienced beekeepers in our area are commercial beekeepers and they all use the Langstroth hive. Many of them depend on the money from beekeeping as their sole source of income. Many of the methods they use are designed to maximize earnings. So a lot of the advice we get is geared towards maximum honey production and ease of work on the beekeeper.

Again, welcome. Thanks for taking the time to visit the site and read our first post. I hope you come back often and tell others about the site. If you have something you’d like to share, please drop us a line to webmaster AT beekeeping DOT cc, or connect with us on Twitter. We’d love to hear from you. Thanks again and God bless.

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