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How Real Is The Risk To Bees From Karaka?


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We have two mature fruiting Karakas about 20m as the bee flies from our house, and the one hive in the yard beside the house has for the last three years dipped drastically in population in Spring. This year there are no dead bees outside, a fair few inside on the base board, slight dampness and mould growing on the shade side inside the boxes, and four frames of stores this year going into September. No DWV, Varroa checks finding only the occasional mite. Apivar strips in at the end of August. We're guessing maybe 1000-1200 bees currently resident but the population is climbing now with bees chewing out at each inspection and a fair bit of capped brood. They are storing and coming home with pollen and have not been robbed. The weak hive from last year was moved to a sunnier spot about 500m away in February and is booming. Yes, hives vary, but the repeating dip in population of the home hive(s) has us looking for reasons. In short, should we be murdering the Karakas for the sake of the bees? 

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There has been little or no research into Karaka poisoning For over 40 years. I suspect it is narcotic rather than actually toxic but that doesn't stop it from killing the bees as they sit apparently

we regularly get hives wacked by karaka.  its very weather dependant so its often minor. but some years its really bad. some cropping sites you cannot put hives until karaka is finished othe

ive noticed that the karaka tree i planted down at the beech is dropping seedlings everywhere. luckily it flowers when the spring winds happen and the kamahi flowers. the bees have lots of k

we regularly get hives wacked by karaka. 

its very weather dependant so its often minor. but some years its really bad.

some cropping sites you cannot put hives until karaka is finished otherwise the hives become to weak to get a crop.

pollination sites you just have to take it on the chin.

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ive noticed that the karaka tree i planted down at the beech is dropping seedlings everywhere.

luckily it flowers when the spring winds happen and the kamahi flowers.

the bees have lots of kamahi flowering very close to their hives in wind sheltered spots.

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I just cut my ones right back because i thought it has been affecting my hives.I wonder if wetter and drier seasons have a 

bearing on the strength of the "poison"created.Maori soaked the kernel for some time in water to negate the poison before making a sort of flat bread by grinding and baking.I also understand the berry is poisonous to dogs.

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