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Trevor Gillbanks

December 2018 Apiary Diary

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1 hour ago, frazzledfozzle said:

 

2nd that 

Most of the beeks i Know are good guys .

The bad ones must live somewhere else .

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It's been a very bee orientated few days here.  Checked hives 3 days ago, thought to my self best paint those extra boxes and assemble the frames sitting in the garage, as 1 have looked like it needed some space.
So I did that yesterday along with making myself some bee escapes in case I need them.

 

Cheeked hives today. Yikes it was hot!

I've almost run out of boxes again. I had to put 2 on the hive that I thought needed space, in 3 days, drew out and filled 4+ frames and back filled about 3 or 4 in the brood boxes. WHoops left that a little late.

The others also needed more space.


If they keep cranking at this rate I might have to get some extracted shortly.

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It never ceases to amaze me what surprises the bees produce...  

 

Did a sugar shake on a hive yesterday, one mite, will need to ask @Philbee for my money back.  Ha Ha.

 

When I cracked the same hive it had three honey boxes (3/4's) all mostly full and as I went to take the second box down off a Queen was coming out.  I caught her and dropped her in a cage.  Must have been a VQ and she couldn't get out to mate...squashed her later......she would have been well out of mating viability.

 

Did a graft yesterday will need to check the starter a bit later.  Hoping its not a 0.  

 

Yesterday a swarm from one of my sites that I re-caught about a week ago  were in a corflute nuc and they decided to swarm again.  I closed them in and later housed them in a FD box and gave them some sugar syrup, hopefully that will keep them at home.

 

Oh and how about this.  In a mating nuc I caged the Queen and I had a new VQ so I caged her and lifted the tab.  When I looked next I noticed the mated Queen was gone from her cage and so was the VQ.  I thought the VQ would have killed the mated Queen.  The mated Queen got out because I'd used an old used cage and forgotten to put wax over the tab end.  

 

Yesterday I looked again and I saw a mated Queen, and another mated Queen on the same frame!!  So how the heck could this be - supercedure sure with a mother/daughter but two entirely different mated Queens living in harmony.  It was a perfect @yesbut utopian moment.  Although sadly not long lasting as I took a frame with brood and bees and one of the Q's and started a new nuc.

 

And then today......whew it is hot out there today.  The bee dog was most unhappy even under the ute.  But there is a really solid late kanuka flowering going on and the hives I cracked were drowning in the stuff.  Something of a relief after the December drenching we've had.

 

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4 hours ago, CraBee said:

Did a sugar shake on a hive yesterday, one mite, will need to ask @Philbee for my money back.  Ha Ha.

Im not at all happy about this but in balance I did find a mite also a while back .:3_grin:

 

Edited by Philbee
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My 3/4 hives have 2 brood boxes , a QE then a honey super . Most have perhaps half a box of honey on them. 

My management change to produce no honey for the extractor has worked well. The two bottom boxes are packed with honey , stored pollen and limited brood . 

This has resulted in very healthy Bees with a limited work force .

Ive pulled out the queen excluders so the bees can  now get busy storing honey for the winter . Effectively I’m starting my wintering down . They will winter as 3 X 3/4 boxes . 

 Normally I’d pull honey off mid Feb and replace with syrup via top feeders . 

Two hives are producing honey for our own use which I’ll extract a bit later on.

Really good to see drone brood under the queen excluders with no varroa in them . Usually I’m seeing plenty by now . So there has been no reinvasion since OA paper staples got removed several months ago . They will go back in mid Feb 

 

Edited by M4tt
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