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Alastair

The Oxalic Staple Info Processing Thread

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39 minutes ago, Alastair said:

Well that one came through better than a lot of mine!

 

As a man of inquiring mind Dan, would you be interested in testing them for nasties?

I will be very soon Alastair. There are 12 hives being tested as these are part of a trial with another businesses product (not the varroa Treatments).

There are 6 Control hives and 6 Test hives.

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Wow that sounds interesting!

 

One of those supplement / additive type things?

 

Will we be hearing about it here in due course? 🙂

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23 minutes ago, Alastair said:

Wow that sounds interesting!

 

One of those supplement / additive type things?

 

Will we be hearing about it here in due course? 🙂

Yes and yes👍

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On 16/11/2019 at 7:40 PM, Alastair said:

 

Interesting... with the replacement i did, I'm thinking i may have ended up just putting to much acid into the hives.

 

We are getting there.

I was prepared this s[ring to remove the staples at week 4 and put new ones in however I am happy to leave them like that till next couple of weeks and then remove them as the flow starts.

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1 hour ago, Kiwi Bee said:

 

 I am happy to leave them like that till next couple of weeks and then remove them as the flow starts.

That seems like a long way away, my Mahoe has been going for a fortnight same as Manuka,  Flax & Kanuka just coming out....apart from all the garden florals....

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2 hours ago, yesbut said:

That seems like a long way away, my Mahoe has been going for a fortnight same as Manuka,  Flax & Kanuka just coming out....apart from all the garden florals....

Do you have any kamahi in your area.

Drove out to wharariki  today  saw lots of manuka flowering in the scrub lands .

Saw some hives there  , yesterday the bees may actually  have been able to collect nectar ..

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28 minutes ago, kaihoka said:

Do you have any kamahi in your area.

Drove out to wharariki  today  saw lots of manuka flowering in the scrub lands .

Saw some hives there  , yesterday the bees may actually  have been able to collect nectar ..

There'a heaps of K. starting a couple of km up the road, although I don't about flowers. I forgot to mention  Ti kouka, there's a really good show this year. 

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On 23/11/2019 at 8:36 AM, kaihoka said:

I have heard that these tents can be sat up on sheets of polystrene and covered in old duvet inners to keep the heat in when they are sat in cold sheds in winter .

We had some thick rubber lying around so put that under the tent and the old duvets on the top.

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6 hours ago, fieldbee said:

We had some thick rubber lying around so put that under the tent and the old duvets on the top.

Just add lights and a fan and you'll be able to supplement your meager honey income . LOL  😀😀😀

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Hmm ..... we are starting to get to the end of splitting. The survivor bees have built up beautifully in the last month or so.  If it's been splittable , we split it.   Popped the queen and four  frames of brood down on a dead out, left three frames of brood on the original bottom board to bulk up on the drift  and made a unit up on top of the moved queen in the bottom box. They should be good for Big Hands Rata in february.

The question now is the Varroa.

The bees look clean , but I know that can misleading. 

Next round we'll whack in some re dipped staples as the Apitraz will have about worked it's magic. 

The other task on the whiteboard is Testing .......  mite testing.

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11 minutes ago, jamesc said:

Hmm ..... we are starting to get to the end of splitting. The survivor bees have built up beautifully in the last month or so.  If it's been splittable , we split it.   Popped the queen and four  frames of brood down on a dead out, left three frames of brood on the original bottom board to bulk up on the drift  and made a unit up on top of the moved queen in the bottom box. They should be good for Big Hands Rata in february.

The question now is the Varroa.

The bees look clean , but I know that can misleading. 

Next round we'll whack in some re dipped staples as the Apitraz will have about worked it's magic. 

The other task on the whiteboard is Testing .......  mite testing.

Did you sell your last lot of rata honey ?

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6 minutes ago, jamesc said:

Hmm ..... we are starting to get to the end of splitting. The survivor bees have built up beautifully in the last month or so.  If it's been splittable , we split it.   Popped the queen and four  frames of brood down on a dead out, left three frames of brood on the original bottom board to bulk up on the drift  and made a unit up on top of the moved queen in the bottom box. They should be good for Big Hands Rata in february.

The question now is the Varroa.

The bees look clean , but I know that can misleading. 

Next round we'll whack in some re dipped staples as the Apitraz will have about worked it's magic. 

The other task on the whiteboard is Testing .......  mite testing.

Why re-dip the strips? Surely you are introducing another unknown quantity by using it this way.

i say get new strips. Mix the Oxalic/ glycerin to the correct ratio. Soak for long enough, drain until dry. Insert the acknowledged amount of strips through the middle of the colony as per other successful users. Monitor, measure and learn.

It seems every time you use the strips you are using in a way that hasn’t been endorsed by any other successful user.

 

Sorry James, home distilled Rum fired me up there. 👍

 

I hope the season and bees go well for you.

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Why re use .....I like recycling and  I'm scared of Philbee's wrath.

8 minutes ago, kaihoka said:

Did you sell your last lot of rata honey ?

NO ..... But maybe now that HongKong has gone through the pain we might move along a bit .

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Autumn and spring treated with Oxalic/Glycerin paper strips. Honey supers went on today (a bit late).

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Purpose of this thread Dan, is to collect and process useful information that will help with the successful use of OA staples.

 

Your hives appear to be doing reasonably well, would you be prepared to divulge some pathogen tests to help figure if pathogens are an issue?

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3 hours ago, Alastair said:

Purpose of this thread Dan, is to collect and process useful information that will help with the successful use of OA staples.

 

Your hives appear to be doing reasonably well, would you be prepared to divulge some pathogen tests to help figure if pathogens are an issue?

 I received the little ziplock bags to put bees in on Wednesday. I will definitely make the results known here.

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On 23/11/2019 at 12:17 AM, Alastair said:

What is N? Nil?

 

If so, i would have considered those results nothing to worry about. N. apis has been with us as long as bees have and is like a common cold for them, and BQCV only an issue if queen raising. BQCV is now present in almost every hive in the country.

 

$85 + GST per test.

 

A test sample should have 10 to 15 bees. So i didn't want to test just one hive and maybe it was a good one and i get a misleading result. I took 2 bees each from 8 hives per sample, and I chose the worst looking 8 in each catagory, to have the best chance to pic up any nasties that may be around. I also attempted to get any unwell looking bees, if there were any.

 

$85 is for the nosemas and Lotmaria - more if wanting the full panel as @Rob Atkinson showed. 

 

Wouldnt suggest doing 2 bees per hive - you’re going to dilute out or ‘homogenise’ your results. Unless of course you only have about 20 bees left !

 

On 23/11/2019 at 10:02 AM, Rob Atkinson said:

 .

My 2014 testing showed BQCV is correlated with with high nosema apis .

 

 

I haven’t looked it up lately but there was a thought that BQCV is a mycovirus - ie a virus that also infects fungi - in this case, nosema apis. 

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55 minutes ago, JohnF said:

Wouldnt suggest doing 2 bees per hive - you’re going to dilute out or ‘homogenise’ your results. Unless of course you only have about 20 bees left !

 

But if i want to find average infection level across an apiary, it would work?

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22 hours ago, Alastair said:

 

But if i want to find average infection level across an apiary, it would work?

Should have been minimum 10 bees per hive for a statistically correct result. I can’t remember why ten is the number to use, but for any statistical analysis we did at the sawmill I worked at it was always a minimum number to start with.

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Thing is, they want 10 to 15 bees per sample. Cost was $85 per sample so I didn't want to submit too many of them.

 

If i just submitted one sample, and it just came from one hive, that would not be a statistically correct result for the apiary either. Could have been the sick hive, or, could have been the well hive.

 

My samples were 16 or so bees taken from 8 hives. In my view those 16 bees taken from 8 hives will be more representative of the apiary, than the same number of bees taken from 1 hive.

 

Having said that, i can see how if one hive was sick and the others were not, you could get a diluted result. However if most hives are well, I'm OK with knowing that. As it turned out, despite taking bees from multiple hives per sample, I got a high reading of pathogens. That is the useful info I needed, I know there is an issue across the apiary.

 

 

 

Edited by Alastair

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Beekeepers have stated that they see increased superseding of queens when using the oxalic staples. I claimed earlier in this thread that I have not seen this and at that point in time this was correct. I have had more unexplained turnover of queens in my colonies over the last 5-6 weeks than what I usually see and I am struggling to understand why. Seemingly healthy queens in strong colonies suddenly disappear and get replaced. They are not particularly old and the cases I refer to here the hive hasn't swarmed.

 

My question is: When you've had supersedures does this coincide with putting the oxalic staples in? In my case it seems to be happening a couple of months down the track. I am not convinced that it is the oxalic that is causing it but would like a bit more detail from others to try and work it out.

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For me anyway, it was while the staples were in, but t hasn't been long enough since the staples were removed to see if the process is ongoing. 

 

Just based on pure observation, the supersedure in my hives did not look to be a direct result of the OA (although i cannot know that for sure), but looked to be the bees response to a swarming urge, and then changing their minds after queen cells were under way, due to a falling bee population. However I am not inside their heads and able to totally understand their motives.

 

I also don't see supersedure as a bad thing, provided it is done properly, ie new queen is of good quality, and the old queen is present until after the new queen is laying.

Edited by Alastair

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3 hours ago, Otto said:

Beekeepers have stated that they see increased superseding of queens when using the oxalic staples. I claimed earlier in this thread that I have not seen this and at that point in time this was correct. I have had more unexplained turnover of queens in my colonies over the last 5-6 weeks than what I usually see and I am struggling to understand why. Seemingly healthy queens in strong colonies suddenly disappear and get replaced. They are not particularly old and the cases I refer to here the hive hasn't swarmed.

 

My question is: When you've had supersedures does this coincide with putting the oxalic staples in? In my case it seems to be happening a couple of months down the track. I am not convinced that it is the oxalic that is causing it but would like a bit more detail from others to try and work it out.

I put strips in in autumn and I have had no swarms but my 3 hives have built supersedure cells .

Last season my hives were swarm factories.

It is such a different spring this yr I could not put it down to strips .

But if strips cause my hives to supersede not swarm I have no.problem with that .

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10 hours ago, Otto said:

 

My question is: When you've had supersedures does this coincide with putting the oxalic staples in? In my case it seems to be happening a couple of months down the track. I am not convinced that it is the oxalic that is causing it but would like a bit more detail from others to try and work it out.

My experience is.. Yes. 

 

It’s not very often that I  re visit a site ‘out of round’ but this August for reasons I can’t remember I called back to a site of 20, 14 days following fresh staples.. 

without checking my dairy to confirm exactly but from memory 16 of the 20 had cells at surprisingly similar size, indicating the urge struck at the same time. 

 

Very easy to suss this out in your own hives by just popping back inside 16 days. 

I cut cells out in some to see what happened and those queens are still laying  eggs today as I shift them into the scrub. 

 

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I started beekeeping in Oct 2017 with a nuc of italians. I initially used OA vaporisation but didn't like it. The bees were very agitated when I used it, and would attack the vaporiser, killing many. In june that winter, I noticed many bees covered with mites, despite weekly doses, so I switched to the paper staples. I make my own and used 35% OA by weight. I have not lost a hive in that time. I don't dry my staples first. But I do run them firmly between my fingers to squeeze out the solution. I also only run a line of cotton up the middle, though I have used a stapler to make some up as well.

In that time I have noticed some interest things. Some queens will not lay anywhere near the staples, others I can lift up the staple and find brood. I had a couple of carni queens I purchased in Feb 2018 last till this spring before they were superceded, while an Italian queen was superceded in a month. I have made a decision not to buy any more queens in as I started overwintering queens in nucs. I have one hive as school that seems to supercede regularly. I am not sure what is going on with it, but it has had 4 new queens since August 2018. They now have a tiger queen running around so will see how that goes.

Some hives seem to ignore the staples, others go out of there way to remove them and cause significant damage in only a week or two.

I also left a significant amount of honey on the hive for winter due to the very poor harvest last season, and I don't like feeding sugar.

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