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Trevor Gillbanks

June 2019 Apiary Diary

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Another month rocks around with mother nature showing her teeth at last.

No bees flying today.

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just wondering. is it a good idea to do an oxalic vapour treatment when its raining and all the bees are inside? I

I'm weighing up if it's better to do it today to stay on schedule, or wait until they are flying. this would be the third of a planned five treatments. 

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5 hours ago, Trevor Gillbanks said:

Another month rocks around with mother nature showing her teeth at last.

No bees flying today.

Went out to have a look at the 2 hives I have at home just before the Thunder an hour or so ago and was very surprised to see a few bees coming and going, the returning ones had a little bit of pollen in their baskets. I would have thought it was to cold for them to be flying. 

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5 hours ago, Trevor Gillbanks said:

Do it.

I'm on wax moth and scraping from now onwards, I try do 1 pallets of 28 a day. 

Every second day filling up a 20L bucket of wax and killing up to 100 wax moth grubs, takes about 1-3hour per pallet with 2 people depending how bad the pallet is

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14 minutes ago, Maru Hoani said:

I'm on wax moth and scraping from now onwards, I try do 1 pallets of 28 a day. 

Every second day filling up a 20L bucket of wax and killing up to 100 wax moth grubs, takes about 1-3hour per pallet with 2 people depending how bad the pallet is

Can you get them to a commercial freezer? May save a bit of your life for more enjoyable things...

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We started cleaning up our boxes this week. Bit like eating an elephant when you first start!🤣

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2 hours ago, Stoney said:

Can you get them to a commercial freezer? May save a bit of your life for more enjoyable things...

I wish there were one near by or that I had a np450 then I could take 12 pallets in one trip with my trailor.

I got some money put aside but wasn't too sure whether to tick up or not incase things don't happen next season. 

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5 minutes ago, Maru Hoani said:

I wish there were one near by or that I had a np450 then I could take 12 pallets in one trip with my trailor.

I got some money put aside but wasn't too sure whether to tick up or not incase things don't happen next season. 

What about one of those big freezer trucks , could you hire one for the weekend .

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15 minutes ago, kaihoka said:

What about one of those big freezer trucks , could you hire one for the weekend .

Probly be a week, I got a lot of pallets. 

But good idea I'll look into it

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9 hours ago, Maru Hoani said:

I'm on wax moth and scraping from now onwards, I try do 1 pallets of 28 a day. 

Every second day filling up a 20L bucket of wax and killing up to 100 wax moth grubs, takes about 1-3hour per pallet with 2 people depending how bad the pallet is

So is it pretty standard to get a bit of wax moth in supers,no matter how much protection u provide for ur boxes? They make a huarra of a mess!

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Finished my comb sorting last week and there was very little moth damage with perhaps half a percent of the combs badly damaged and about 1% with light damage. Not enough damage to worry about and certainly not enough to cover the cost of freezing. If you do get badly infected boxes especially with feed honey sometimes even freezing doesn't work that well because when there is enough of them they create their own heat and can stay alive for quite a few days even in a commercial freezer.

Spent the last few days shifting a few hives round. I have taken all my hives of one farm because the area was just not viable with poor spring sources, bad Karaka poisoning, way below average crops and very high Tutin levels in what little honey I did get. I don't often give up on apiarys sites but I do keep meticulous production records and if the figures just don't add up you sometimes have to make hard commercial decisions. It's a pity because it was a truly beautiful place to keep bees.

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 @john berryI do wonder why the migrants come back to my place each yr .

It must be so marginal .

If they were not pollination hives looking for a home I doubt they would come out here .

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Just to tell that I tried the new fork of which we were talking a lot before. Unfortunately there were not much capped frames due to horror weather ( which still whipping with storms and all the joy with it). Maybe we used to work with ordinary fork.. With this new one, not too bad. But when comb is uneven, have to return deeper. More wax is going off, it does drip more than when we are using ordinary fork ( take more wax). It doesn't ruin the comb. But for now will stick to ordinary fork. It needs some time to get the feeling to work faster. If we had decent season more likely will use it more than ordinary fork..

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17 hours ago, john berry said:

Finished my comb sorting last week and there was very little moth damage with perhaps half a percent of the combs badly damaged and about 1% with light damage. Not enough damage to worry about and certainly not enough to cover the cost of freezing. If you do get badly infected boxes especially with feed honey sometimes even freezing doesn't work that well because when there is enough of them they create their own heat and can stay alive for quite a few days even in a commercial freezer.

Spent the last few days shifting a few hives round. I have taken all my hives of one farm because the area was just not viable with poor spring sources, bad Karaka poisoning, way below average crops and very high Tutin levels in what little honey I did get. I don't often give up on apiarys sites but I do keep meticulous production records and if the figures just don't add up you sometimes have to make hard commercial decisions. It's a pity because it was a truly beautiful place to keep bees.

I have had to drop a few sites especially when the land owner wanted to be paid for sites that were only just covering running costs. 

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3 hours ago, Maru Hoani said:

I have had to drop a few sites especially when the land owner wanted to be paid for sites that were only just covering running costs. 

 

i imagine there will be heaps of beekeepers rethinking sites fees that are being paid for sites that are now producing unsaleable honey. 

Imagine paying $50 -$100 per hive for a bush site.

even $30 a hive for a doc bush site is unaffordable 

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4 minutes ago, frazzledfozzle said:

 

i imagine there will be heaps of beekeepers rethinking sites fees that are being paid for sites that are now producing unsaleable honey. 

Imagine paying $50 -$100 per hive for a bush site.

even $30 a hive for a doc bush site is unaffordable 

Does there need to be more news coverage about the situation a lot of beeks are in .

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As ye sow so shall ye reap.

I know a lot of beekeepers who lost long-standing apiarys sites to new beekeepers offering farmers lots of money and much as I hate to admit it I have trouble feeling too much sympathy for those that dug their own holes.Many Manuka produces are if anything deeper down the hole than Clover produces with massive overpayments coupled with massive overstocking and pathetic crops.

How many tens of millions more are some of these corporate's going to lose before their backers wake up and can we survive the damage they are inflicting on us.

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Posted (edited)

It’s almost unbelievable how our industry has changed since “finding” Manuka.

its been a very big learning experience what money and greed does to people. 

Edited by frazzledfozzle
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3 hours ago, kaihoka said:

Does there need to be more news coverage about the situation a lot of beeks are in .

I think so, a lot of corporates are poaching off non manuka blocks boundary stacking but also I still got one more apiary to shift next season that only produces Bush honey and the land owner is convinced that his mostly kanuka block is manuka and demands $75 per hive because that's what the big C offers

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42 minutes ago, Maru Hoani said:

I think so, a lot of corporates are poaching off non manuka blocks boundary stacking but also I still got one more apiary to shift next season that only produces Bush honey and the land owner is convinced that his mostly kanuka block is manuka and demands $75 per hive because that's what the big C offers

Not just corporates playing those games to be fair.  I would be astounded if C are still offering money like that considering their last 3 seasons results - but then again nothing surprises me these days.

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They are, I just poached one of their sites but this one actually has manuka

 

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10 hours ago, Maru Hoani said:

They are, I just poached one of their sites but this one actually has manuka

 

Do you have to pay $75 a hive  ?

On the doc land for  manuka here it was $50.  But this manuka is not active . Or of a low level .

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Over 100, my highest was 160 per hive last season came back at 9+ mono

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9 minutes ago, Maru Hoani said:

Over 100, my highest was 160 per hive last season came back at 9+ mono

Does that mean it was worth it , to pay that much .

Is the manuka up north flowering ? My ornamental manukas are flowering here .

And the manukas I grew from seed from my pink manukas .

The bees are in them . Its hard to believe they are giving any nectar.

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