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Angie from Utah writes:
Hi Kirkobeeo!

Love your YouTube videos! I am wondering if I could go with your style of beekeeping in the Cottonwood Canyons of Utah. I use foundations and do extracting rather than crush and straining. Although I originally had planned to do the crush and strain method. The beekeepers in my area said that because of our short growing season, it takes too much time for the bees to rebuild the wax and have enough honey ready for winter.

Most beekeepers lose their hives that are in my area because we are high in the mountains and it gets super cold in the winter. I move my bees against the house to get radiant heat and so far I have been able to keep my hives over the winter. I have snow from mid-October through late May.

Also, do you use a queen excluder? I have been because I am afraid I will lose my queen when I am in the hive to do extraction, but I am pretty sure it is crowding the queen because I had a swarm last year.

Thanks for your guidance!

Angie, NOVICE beekeeper

Kirk replies:
Hay great to hear from you. I have spent many days up Cottonwood Canyons—both Big and Little.

I don't use a queeen excluder. I call it a honey excluder. Most people or other bekeepers who say foundationless frames take too long for the bees to draw in a short season have not observed that personally. The old books' statement that it takes "so much honey to make a pound of comb" is not true in my opinion.

The prime reason not to use foundation is cell size and the pollution in the foundation.

Now that idea you have to move the hives so as to get radiant heat from the house is a real good Idea for sure. Enjoy the blog, join the backwards beekeeping club and most of all keep succeeding with your beekeeping. I'm comming up to Utah to visit my Daughter in August love to drop by. Also would love a story from you and some pictures of your Beekeeping.

your pal kirkobeeo

Wondering what Angie means by "crush and straining"? Check out this video.