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Trevor Gillbanks

August 2019 Apiary Diary

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Posted (edited)
44 minutes ago, Alastair said:

I've just been putting mine smack through the middle of the brood nest, haven't been back to check any yet, is that going to work?

This was how we ran them at the start this time last season and later found we had cut the brood nest in half .. a small percentage of them layed past staples but majority didn’t which affected expansion of the nest. 

We now run a leg in every seam and alternate ends of the frames. 

Works for us. 

Always placed on outside edge of the brood, like say half on the brood and half on the pollen/stores band surrounding brood.

For us that is most effective. 

A full box of bees gets 4, a double brood both boxes full of bees with brood gets 7 . 

A box of bees containing only 5 frames bees and couple small patches of brood I give 1... adding more as they expand up to a max of 4 in one box. 

Always wiping excess liquid off before placing. 

This works for us on our sites. 

We have done a full year ox staples only. 

First time we used them we lost bees but so far things appear fine this season. 

They MUST be with the brood and don’t appear anywhere near as effective if brood is away in the corner of the box post winter. 

EF219F49-8347-4478-8E77-A6CB0E821C2E.png

Edited by Stoney
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I think I know why Randy what's is name decided towels were a better choice, nowhere near as labour intensive.

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Thanks Stoney that is very helpful the pic is worth a thousand words also. 👍

 

I'll be checking mine again 4 weeks after the first staple install, so at that time, factoring in your information,  I'll be able to see whatever damage I may have done, and what i should have done better.

 

I'm not actually too fussed, because for some reason most of the hives this season are stronger than i would like at this time and swarm control is looking like it will be near impossible. So if I've cut bee numbers some, could be a good thing.

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1 hour ago, Alastair said:

Thanks Stoney that is very helpful the pic is worth a thousand words also. 👍

 

I'll be checking mine again 4 weeks after the first staple install, so at that time, factoring in your information,  I'll be able to see whatever damage I may have done, and what i should have done better.

 

I'm not actually too fussed, because for some reason most of the hives this season are stronger than i would like at this time and swarm control is looking like it will be near impossible. So if I've cut bee numbers some, could be a good thing.

Stoney's way is the result of lots of trials and will likely become the standard.

The way I do it is the same way you have done it and has worked very well for me but has always split the Brood over winter.

This has never concerned me but I now realize that most Beeks are much more fussy than I and.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Philbee said:

Stoney's way is the result of lots of trials and will likely become the standard.

The way I do it is the same way you have done it and has worked very well for me but has always split the Brood over winter.

This has never concerned me but I now realize that most Beeks are much more fussy than I and.

 

 

 

With the narrows you produce is it correct that the Q crosses over it?

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Posted (edited)

So can someone please enlighten me why after using staples for a year  my hives are either dead or still riddled with mites.  We need to learn from the disaster stories as well as the good ones, because somewhere along the line someone screwed up ..... or something like that.

Edited by jamesc

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20 minutes ago, CraBee said:

 

With the narrows you produce is it correct that the Q crosses over it?

Lol

Ive never used them so dont know.

My logic was that if wide ones killed x amount of Brood then one half as wide would kill half as much Brood or maybe less.
 

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14 minutes ago, Philbee said:

Lol

Ive never used them so dont know.

My logic was that if wide ones killed x amount of Brood then one half as wide would kill half as much Brood or maybe less.
 

 

Arhh, I thought you'd produced them as a way of dealing with the Queen not crossing over .....

Oh well looks like I'm going to be running and extended trial given the recent order 🙂

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32 minutes ago, jamesc said:

So can someone please enlighten me why after using staples for a year  my hives are either dead or still riddled with mites.  We need to learn from the disaster stories as well as the good ones, because somewhere along the line someone screwed up ..... or something like that.

Who mixed up your brew ? You didn't by any chance soak them in Speights  by accident ?

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43 minutes ago, jamesc said:

So can someone please enlighten me why after using staples for a year  my hives are either dead or still riddled with mites.  We need to learn from the disaster stories as well as the good ones, because somewhere along the line someone screwed up ..... or something like that.

That must be very disheartning and confusing .

I have no explaination .

I only have 3 hives . They are mixed in strength .

I have no idea how much varroa I have . I really should sort out sugar shaking .

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24 minutes ago, jamesc said:

So can someone please enlighten me why after using staples for a year  my hives are either dead or still riddled We need to learn from the disaster stories as well as the good ones, because somewhere along the line someone screwed up ..... or something like that 

I thought you got yours later on  in the season james?

We also don’t mix our own brew, they come ready to use. 

 

We had a big learning curve in our year of staples.. from colonies bleeding bees half a metre out the front door to mite ridden DWV affected colonies losing half their population in one foul swoop... nowhere to be seen.. 

very alarming to see .. and followed by many sleepless nights thinking about 3500 colonies we may have killed.. 

we have been trialing different placement methods and numbers of staples all last season, 

this is still in my view a rather large self trialed experiment.. 

theres no instructions or rules.. 

 

I have placed them into crashing colonies with 2 mites per bee visible.

we have placed 2 per box of bees.. to find mites building up.. then 3 then 4 then 6-7., 

checking discussing, tweaking methods etc , really keeping an eye on things. 

these things do work but ya gotta do some grunt work as well. 

The old synthetic treatment mentality doesn’t work with these. 

 

My view is these things are absolutely perfect for suppressing mite invasion in colonies with light infestation to begin with, they will turn around heavy infestation but are much slower than say Bayvarol and also may reduce some population also slowing the eventual turn around.. 

once the bees are fairly “ clean” these really come into there own maintaining very low single digit mite numbers per 300 bees washed. 

Reinvasion on some sites becomes alarmingly obvious with regular washing also. 

If I find a small colony now that has visible varroa damage I place synthetic treatment first, give it some love, let it come away nicely then switch it over to the staple.. 

just my thoughts anyway..

if our experiences with staples can help one beekeeper deal with mites better than they were then it’s all been worthwhile. 

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I am pretty sure that more than one leg of a staple per seam of bees is doing something very counterproductive to a hive . Perhaps @Philbeecould comment , but this may not have helped your bees @jamesc. The action of both fencing them in and creating a toxic centre in the hive . You won’t get that with only one leg per seam. 

 

Ive also found 5 per box too many . The one on the outside frame is wasteful . I also suspect the 40% staples are less forgiving on a hive than the previous lower strength brew .

 

It seems to me that the management of applying staples needs to work alongside the beekeepers intuition . Read each hive as a separate unit . This means erring in the side of caution and starting with one or two staples on the small clusters , and adding more as they build up . This probably means more regular visits than with synthetics . My bees have been pretty quick to expand the brood to the next couple of frames where there was none the previous visit , but I have definitely negatively affected hives by putting in 7 over two boxes in one hit . 

 

Its a a learning game and I believe with our open communication we are making really good progress 

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6 minutes ago, M4tt said:

 

Couldn’t agree more on the communication Matt.

These are all our own experiments on our own terms and we know some are having very different results to others. 

Weeding out the differences in the trials can only be positive. 

However... we probably should be doing it over in the Ox /GL thread ..... 🤔

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1 hour ago, yesbut said:

Who mixed up your brew ? You didn't by any chance soak them in Speights  by accident ?

Oh crap .....  the man cave is next to the brew room ....

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Just now, jamesc said:

Oh crap .....  the man cave is next to the brew room ....

Your teeth must be incredibly white if you been sippin outta the OX/GL tap... 

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Luckily we have some synthetics arriving Monday ..... so thanks to the cavalry !

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Synthetics... hmmm have they been de criminalised up your way? 

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We have ALOT of wasps going in and out of some of our hives, they have robbed out quite a few too.  We put some raw meat out to see if they will take it, and they ate it like it was cake. So will be putting some vespex out tomorrow - hopefully they will take that too.

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20 hours ago, Stoney said:

Synthetics... hmmm have they been de criminalised up your way? 

All is fair in love and war

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23 hours ago, CraBee said:

 

With the narrows you produce is it correct that the Q crosses over it?

 

I am only using narrows now and over winter. Albeit home made... not the philbee pros. I make four layer gib tape staples. No fold because I like to make one side of the strip of gib wider than the other so that I can have slightly wider staples for full hives and slightly narrower ones for my 3 frame and five frame nucs.

 

When positioned across the middle of the box they still stop the Q crossing over and you end up with brood on one side and stores on the other... even in a three frame wintered nuc. I am now going with the Stoney method of placing them around the edge of the brood and the M4tt method of only putting enough staples in for the amount of brood. I had lots of dead bees out the front door when I started replacing staples a month ago because I think I was putting too many in and still straight across the middle.

 

My 30 hives are looking amazing now (how they bounce back!)... whole boxes of frames being drawn out. This time last year CHCH was like up north with rain rain rain and the bees couldn't get to all the flowers - but not this year!

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6 minutes ago, CHCHPaul said:

 

I am only using narrows now and over winter. Albeit home made... not the philbee pros. I make four layer gib tape staples. No fold because I like to make one side of the strip of gib wider than the other so that I can have slightly wider staples for full hives and slightly narrower ones for my 3 frame and five frame nucs.

 

When positioned across the middle of the box they still stop the Q crossing over and you end up with brood on one side and stores on the other... even in a three frame wintered nuc. I am now going with the Stoney method of placing them around the edge of the brood and the M4tt method of only putting enough staples in for the amount of brood. I had lots of dead bees out the front door when I started replacing staples a month ago because I think I was putting too many in and still straight across the middle.

 

My 30 hives are looking amazing now (how they bounce back!)... whole boxes of frames being drawn out. This time last year CHCH was like up north with rain rain rain and the bees couldn't get to all the flowers - but not this year!

I’ve just pulled all the staples out of he middle of the brood and placed the whole lot as per the @Stoney method. I’m really liking the ‘no brood damage’ that I’m seeing . They are starting to build pretty quick with most having new brood on two more frames than last visit, so in with another staple . 

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Posted (edited)
54 minutes ago, M4tt said:

I’ve just pulled all the staples out of he middle of the brood and placed the whole lot as per the @Stoney method. I’m really liking the ‘no brood damage’ that I’m seeing . They are starting to build pretty quick with most having new brood on two more frames than last visit, so in with another staple . 

 

@M4tt I read before you are just adding a staple as the brood and bees expand.  Do you think there is a risk though that eg your first two staples are used up after a month, and then by adding an extra staple that it may not be enough OA for the amount of brood/bees.   You'll know if it works...just curious really.

 

I've also always put them through the middle, or the middle to edge of the brood, but am going to give @Stoney method a go.

 

Seems the Ox/Gly staples continue to do the job for 99% of us, if they don't work I think it is likely due to very high mite levels at treatment (and so the hive is doomed) or user error.

 

Edited by CraBee
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Posted (edited)
9 minutes ago, CraBee said:

 

@M4tt I read before you are just adding a staple as the brood and bees expand.  Do you think there is a risk though that eg your first two staples are used up after a month, and then by adding an extra staple that it may not be enough OA for the amount of brood/bees.   You'll know if it works...just curious really.

 

I've also always put them through the middle, or the middle to edge of the brood, but am going to give @Stoney method a go.

 

Seems the Ox/Gly staples continue to do the job for 99% of us, if they don't work I think it is likely due to very high mite levels at treatment or user error.

 

I’m adding staples slowly primarily based on my own user error of adding too many at once , at the start of spring treatment . What I found was where there were plenty of bees and not much brood , too many staples has ‘stopped ‘ those hives moving forward . For example , 7 staples over two boxes of bees has seen no expansion of brood , and I suspect , a drop in bee numbers , to the point I’m pulling staples back out . It ‘feels’ to me like I’ve done wrong by them . 

Whereas , the hives with less bees and one or two staples are building up and look

better . 

Regarding the older staples losing power , I guess I’ll keep my eye on them , but I expect the bees to give them a real good chewing out before that happens .

No bees have started chewing yet, but they will .... with a vengeance 

Edited by M4tt
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Pulled a Queen Excluder off today and saw my first play cup of the season.....

 

And in the second photo was rearranging the bottom boxes, and discovered now into the third season the remains of 

oxalic strips, including my original cardboard versions and through @Philbee's various versions.  Was like an oxalic 

acid / glycerine time capsule 🙂

 

Manuka Honey Play Cup.JPG

Hive Doctor Oxalic Strips.JPG

3 minutes ago, M4tt said:

I’m adding staples slowly primarily based on my own user error of adding too many at once , at the start of spring treatment . What I found was where there were plenty of bees and not much brood , too many staples has ‘stopped ‘ those hives moving forward . For example , 7 staples over two boxes of bees has seen no expansion of brood , and I suspect , a drop in bee numbers , to the point I’m pulling staples back out . It ‘feels’ to me like I’ve done wrong by them . 

Whereas , the hives with less bees and one or two staples are building up and look

better . 

Regarding the older staples losing power , I guess I’ll keep my eye on them , but I expect the bees to give them a real good chewing out before that happens .

No bees have started chewing yet, but they will .... with a vengeance 

 

If I recall it correctly Randy Oliver said the optimal dose was 20g per FD box of bees, so that would be three staples at 40% (six legs) per box of bees.

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