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Showing content with the highest reputation on 12/03/16 in all areas

  1. 5 points
    A fabulous boot swarm today, happily rehoused this evening
  2. 5 points
    Today I put foundation into ten 1/2 depth frames made by @dansar for me four years ago, specifically for cut comb. I reduced a strong 3 X 3/4 depth box of bees down to two boxes, by blowing them down with smoke and shaking the remaining bees off , and then added a queen excluder on plus the 1/2 depth box on top. My theory is to have a strong hive that will draw wax and store honey fast . Time will tell if this works
  3. 5 points
    A wet winter and spring in the South Waikato has meant there is a lot of food for the birds. Snails, slugs, worms and other invertebrates have thrived. We have more birds nesting in and around our section than ever before. I have a Blackbird pair nest in our grape vines on a North facing wall. Very easy going birds and I check in on them every day. Wow those chicks grow fast dont they! Mr Black looking after the kids while mum goes out to stretch her legs. These 3 pics cover 4 days of development. Beekeeping at 4am. Bees are saying "the suns' up early today and it seems so close"
  4. 5 points
    Just had 1st look into hive - day 6 since swarm in. Really on Graham Wheeler's advice to check if comb being drawn was crooked. I started with the bar nearest the entrance after moving the follower away. The bees were clustered but no comb obvious. I then went to the other end (bar 10) furthest from the entrance. Amazing. B nice (to my newbee eye) comb. Went as far as bar 5/10 and having seen less drawn at bar 1 decided not to disturb further at this early stage. Very exciting. Didn't see queen but wasn't actively looking for her
  5. 4 points
    last weekend i helped moved some Taranaki hives from a backyard (my mum's place @dansar ) where a neighbour wasn't excited about bees to a place where they'll be all good. Gave an early xmas present at the same time and put some great looking waikato supers onto the hives. Heaps of honey coming in for them. I took a four frame split so that i've got bees in wellington a few weeks back, took an impatient look today and the emergency queen they've raised looks great, and as though she's taken good advantage of the weather - expecting eggs next time i look (likely a week or so from now).
  6. 4 points
    Hi I am the beekeeping across the road could we meet for a cuppa and talk please. Pop in or call me on .....
  7. 3 points
    I've just returned from a trip around, expecting to have had at least one swarm depart, but no, four hives out of three have actually gone backwards. The one that has stashed some tucker is a swarm that has been intelligent enough to draw out two 3/4 boxes of foundation but only laid up about three frames. I'm tipping sugar down the others. One of the colonies was a good split that I'd put on trademe as a 6 frame frame nuc when I left. It didn't sell at $250, which is ok as it turns out 'cos it doesn't look too flash now, nearly starving.. Tell you what, I'm sooooo pleased to not be a commercial.
  8. 3 points
    Out with the old in with the new
  9. 3 points
    I did my first split a couple of weeks back due to swarm cells in a very strong hive. I left the split in the original position and moved the queenright hive approx 1.5m the the side, and then watched the field bees return. About 90% were returning to the split which I felt was too high, so I moved the queenright hive closer. If i put the queenright hive too close, 90% of the returning bees went to the queenright. Adjusted the position 2-3 times over the next 30min until I had a 50/50 split going into each hive. I was amazed at the difference even 50mm made to which hive they returned to. Obviously this was a home based hive so I had the time to observe it. Was fascinating to watch.
  10. 3 points
    To the owner of the hives located at spotX, My hives are usually located across the boundary at farmer Joe's place unless being leased out for pollination. I would like to get your contact details so if I see anyone interfering with your hive I can confirm they have your authority to do so. Also if you are agreeable I would like to discuss the possibility of synchronizing the timing of varroa treatments. Regards The Incumbent
  11. 2 points
    Four weeks ago I bought a mated queen from a local supplier. (I noticed the queen looking a bit thin, but the supplier did say she was aged three weeks.) Subsequent checks revealed no queen or eggs. I don't know what's happened to the queen, but last week I decided that the hive was definitely queenless. So, today I took a frame of capped brood from another hive and put that in the queenless hive, in the hope that a supersedure may take place. More waiting to see if that works. I've not done that before so I hope I have done the right thing?
  12. 2 points
    no, no, I'm quite enjoying the banter, and it's taking a bit of the steam out for me. have been flat out running around with school trips and nuc deliveries, so haven't had a chance to come back to this properly, but I will. Kiwifruiter just called this avo - he's seen beeks working on the site today, and we don't recognise them/vehicles (I had wondered if it was one guy I know, but apparently not). So will have to follow up next week.
  13. 2 points
    yes, tho i try to avoid it. its not good for the bees or the beekeeper.
  14. 2 points
    Don't worry - it'll get done. Big team
  15. 2 points
    you'll find that any bees will swarm if they aren't given enough space - if you want a swarm, just stop adding boxes when they're on a flow is nick treating for varroa? varroa (and lack of varroa treatment) impacts are what people are getting at when they say wild hives die every 12 months, nothing to do with queen longevity. wasn't his motivation to make something that anyone could easily make and run, thus "the people's hive", whether or not that has resulted in hitting a design that is better for bees is moot - but i didn't think that was the primary motivation of the design? i think that what you'll find is that, for better or worse, there is a general mistrust of anecdotal evidence, hence the questions being asked. Plenty of people telling the world about the best approach to beekeeping haven't actually kept hives alive for multiple seasons.. I would love to hear more from @Small Cell Bee about their approach, sounds like several years of high survivorship + the indications they have made that small cells are part of a suite of management techniques rather than controlling varroa in isolation fits in well with the integrated pest management approaches to varroa that several people on this forum and elsewhere have been talking about. i don't think you hit any nerves. Some people (myself included) don't like being told i'm mistreating my poor bees when the bees themselves seem pretty happy, and some infer that they're being accused of this even when they are not being accused. You'll probably find that a lot of people on this forum already know a fair bit about warre hives so possibly are also a little bored by the perceived assumption that someone has found something they know nothing about, @dansar among others are great sources of advice on those hives if that's what you're after. quick question. we can all easily cause our hives to swarm, then catch the swarms, and increase our hive numbers that way. And not treat for varroa.. the autumn caught swarms will likely survive through to spring without treatment, and swarm before they succumb to varroa themselves. This isn't really keeping a hive alive without treatment, it's more like constantly being on the run, hoping against hope not to be caught. I'm interested in approaches that allow a single colony to survive multiple seasons without having to be repopulated by a new swarm every season, is that what you're after?
  16. 2 points
    So, I reinspected today. The hive has changed significantly. Very light frames, reserves all gone except honey in the super and no sign of any of the queen cells that were there before. There weren't even chewed out empty cells. No eggs, but a good supply of capped brood and a few larvae left So, either they swarmed and/or I have a new queen that was no where to be seen (or more likely I missed her). The hive was very settled which is in my favour. And there was no evidence of varoa (DWV etc) or other diseases. So I've taken two frames of brood & eggs from the other very active (disease free & queenright) hive, and moved them across. I figured either I'm no longer queenright, so the eggs will allow new queen cells. Or I'm queenright but just in a brood break, when a few extra frames of brood won't do any harm. I also abandoned my attempt to get my FD robbed out, and put it back in reach. The strong hive was filling it despite the robbing board. And the weak hive seems to be using it as there was less in the frames, but also no evidence of storage down below. Very interesting...
  17. 2 points
    Exactly that, I removed the queen in a brood box and left on the side a couple metres away on a new base and lid and left it there. The queen less brood box stays in the original spot and a caged queen introduced. Parent hive stays where I've left it. Only one hive the queen was being elusive and I couldn't find her so no mated queen, will hopefully introduce her tomorrow. For that one I just used a division board between the brood boxes
  18. 2 points
    I have been in and out of my hive a lot this week. Sorting out the issues caused by being away in Nov. Mostly in the queenless hives. I have the boxes with queens isolated with excluders and I try not to disturb them because I am always worried about killing a queen. I have to go into them today to see if have started to make cells in what Iam sure are queenless hives. I could not find a queen but the bees were not roaring . I am going to open them up in the very hottest part of the day when as many bees as possible are out and busy
  19. 2 points
    Thanks @Daley what about Formica acid. I just watched the vid using FA for a top bar by Janet from Green Urban Living - and yes to hochstetters - werewere-kōkako. Pic taken on the Heaphy track.
  20. 1 point
    That's exactly what it is. I've seen it once. Apparently the boyfriend loses his tool when he disengages and the attendants sort it out when her royal highness returns to the hive. Glad I wasn't born a drone.
  21. 1 point
    Will watch shortly, is this from Dr Phil Lester at Victoria I know he does lots of research on Argentine ants and DWV @JohnF you can spot the MIC in Phil's lab in this clip :geek:
  22. 1 point
    I have a box and frames that I made at the same time as yours. You have motivated me @M4tt, I think I will get it out and add a starter strip and place on a strong hive that already has some honey coming in. I will undersuper it.
  23. 1 point
    Why does the neighbour give the swarms back? he would be better off calling a beekeeper from further away or risk having more hives next door
  24. 1 point
    That is a crack up. Yes as @Daley says. Sooner the better before there is any (or as little as possible) capped brood.
  25. 1 point
    Normally I would say, "photos or it never happened" but in this case (y)
  26. 1 point
    Just be careful not to tip syrup everywhere when your pouring it into the combs, it can start robbing
  27. 1 point
    No Trev don't have any yet. Should I get some on line - may take a few days - or if time critical head to Ecrotek Monday??
  28. 1 point
    I find this good as long as you actually check it, when I'm running doubles I always find the top box gets a bit honey heavy and sometimes there is more brood in the bottom. Sometimes it's too much honey to give to a split and I find it better to switch frames between the boxes and make them a little more even, but I split many ways depending on my desired result. I use all the methods that have been recommended depending on what my goal is for my parents and splits. If you are just trying to prevent swarming then I'll weaken the parent as much as I can. If I'm trying to split for numbers I'll make the splits more equal. I very seldom make any less than a 5 brood frame split as they just take too long to get going. Sounds good (y)
  29. 1 point
    for me i would want as many bees returning as possible. you don't want 50/50 because the parent and split won't stay that way. the queen right will continue to breed and increase in numbers while the other has a lag time before the new queen starts and will loose bees numbers until the new queen is laying. so you need more in that one to compensate for the losses.
  30. 1 point
    @Timw you seem like the practical type. Have you considered making a frame feeder to put in place of the follower board? I expect this would be more space efficient than mason jars on a sub floor.
  31. 1 point
    @Tony Greathead and @Craig Howard if you're looking for a bee fix this weekend then come on round. I have a couple of swarms to check on progress.
  32. 1 point
    Irresponsible Hobby (26 !!!!) Beeks like this will just cause a local bylaw change that would then have an impact on the responsible ones. Not good!
  33. 1 point
    Thanks @Daley - we are really stoked.
  34. 1 point
  35. 1 point
  36. 1 point
    Heard yesterday that all the gung ho big guys up north chasing the manuka have pulled their hives back to the clover in the Waikato. Apparently, after the initial flowering the bees stashed the honey away, then we had cold and rain. When the beeks went back to collect the honey they found the bees had had a banquet to survive the inclement weather.
  37. 1 point
    @Timw As this is a brand new swarm and at this stage is unlikely to have any capped brood. So I would treat it as I do with all swarms. Before the brood is capped I put in 2 strips of Bayvarol for 48 hours. As any varroa in the hive are still on the bees (pheroic) (bad spelling) then this will give a 99% knock down of varroa. Do not consider this a treatment of the hive as such, but just a clean up of the swarm. We have discussed this on numerous occasions on this forum.
  38. 1 point
    Ahh but think about it another way. We all know the Manuka standard is coming up and beekeepers are nervous but I'm pretty sure the big guys know what that standard will be. What's a great way to make a heap of money off the back of that. You get rumours going you get beekeepers thinking the price is going to crash and you buy up large off the back of that. The price they get on the shelf stays the same and the big guys have made a huge profit. If the price was going to crash to $10 and at $10 that is a crash, why are all these corporates running around like headless chooks dumping bees on any site that will do any kind of honey? What do they use that honey for? If it's only $10 honey It's just not profitable when they have such huge outgoings. It's all about getting us thinking prices are going to tank so we get excited at the offer of $11
  39. 1 point
    Depends what you want to use, you can always change later though. Synthetics are fairly safe and simple for beginners, some organic and acid treatments can be a little bit harder on the bees or the bees really really don't like them. I wouldn't use Apistan ever as it has high residues, I would have recommended Bayvarol(because it's sort of safe to have in when you are making honey to eat) but I have heard whispers of resistance to Bayvarol in the Auckland area(I don't know if it's true). Apistan and Bayvarol are similar chemicals in the same family so you should only ever use one or the other and you shouldn't alternate them. You could use Apivar, you won't have too much honey coming in that you will want to eat for a little while.(Apivar should not be in when you want to eat the honey). I would most recommend Apivar for you probably. Or there are organic treatments, like Apilife Var which are thymol wafers, I don't know much about them but organics are better if you have a little more experience. What's everyone else using in Auckland area? PS: Is that a hochstetters mushroom? They're so cool!! I raise you a hochstetters frog
  40. 1 point
    When they have built some comb correctly and they have brood to put strips in between. That said, this late in spring you may get away with not.....
  41. 1 point
    My top bar (new made by Graham Wheeler) is very similar. I made a second follower board as @Trevor Gillbanks suggests here. This is placed 10 cm from the end (before the entrance holes on the side) and has 2 entry holes plugged with corks. In that gap I have a "sub floor" - a piece of ply with hole to take the neck of a 1L agee feeder jar. The second follower is 10 bars away and my new swarm in that space. The idea being the the bees can get to the feeder (I haven't used it yet) through the follower below the sub floor. A long winded explanation for a simple thing. Plan to lift the bars for the first time today to check if comb is being dran straight.
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