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Otto last won the day on July 29 2018

Otto had the most liked content!

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About Otto

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    Commercial Beekeeper


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  1. Otto


    @kaihoka No, this is not true. A nucleus colony with plenty of bees in it can produce very nice queen cells. A key attribute of a cell raiser is that whatever set-up you have for it, it needs to be well populated with bees. A good way to think about it is to look at how quickly the colony might start building swarm cells. A nuc full of bees will very happily do that so makes a perfectly decent cell builder.
  2. Red on Apiweb means that AFB has been found within 2km of the apiary, not a rob out. My understanding is that if a rob out is found then every beekeeper within 3km of that gets sent a letter stating this. If AFB got reported properly by everyone I think most apiaries in the country would likely show up as red on Apiweb...
  3. @Sheryl I believe you have a Farm Source store in Oamaru. They sell the Ecolab glycerine. I use this and am completely happy with it.
  4. Got a call from the Valley Project. They were a bit worried given the proximity to the school and footpaths and school finishing with bees everywhere. Some people from the Project and NEV school showed up keen to take some photos for talking to the kids about it. Another guy showed up taking photos and asking questions. Found out after he left he was a stuff reporter...
  5. https://www.stuff.co.nz/national/115932126/hundreds-of-bees-swarm-house-in-dunedin Can't say too many of my own bees look ready to swarm just yet but someone else's bees are obviously doing alright.
  6. If you have any native bush nearby the really light coloured pollen is likely to be five-finger pollen.
  7. Bees don't need supplements when they are kept in sustainable numbers. Put too many bees in one place and there will be times of the year when they struggle to forage for what they need. I doubt that 100 years ago we had more beehives in an area than that area could sustain. Generating more beehives was almost all done by collecting swarms from existing and feral colonies (i.e. the bees decided when more colonies could be in an area). Beehives would not have been moved around to chase flows. The number of beehives an area can sustain obviously changes drastically with changes in land use so there will be large differences there for many places between now and 100 years ago.
  8. Australia does not have varroa so no, absolutely not.
  9. I think that would be very difficult. The problem is the queen/cell provider has absolutely no guarantees about how their product is being introduced. You can give all the correct advice and instructions but people still refuse to follow it or interpret it in a way you never anticipated...
  10. To know what someones queens are like, the easiest way to find out is to buy some and give them a go. I would certainly recommend giving feedback to the queen breeder/producer, whether it be positive or negative. Not all queens will work well in all different areas of the country. I imagine experienced breeders will have repeat customers who may be happy to vouch for the product? If a cell fails to emerge it is possibly the fault of the person raising the cells, although cells are easily damaged if you're a little rough with them. If it "Doesn't take" (i.e. it emerged but no mated queen results) that is in my opinion in no way on the seller. Everyone surely knows it a game of percentages? The same goes for introducing mated queens. If they don't take it is probably how they were introduced that will be largely to blame.
  11. Otto

    Whats this?.

    The second insect is a fly rather than a bee, probably a kind of hoverfly but hard to tell for sure from the picture. The brown round 'object' is part of the fly, from memory this part at the posterior of the top of the thorax is called the scutellum.
  12. @Sandra-Lee Please read the post two up from yours. These are not legal here. I would suggest keeping a normal (Langstroth) beehive at your school instead. I have been keeping a beehive at my children's primary school (also an enviroschool) for quite a few years now. To get started the best bet would be to find a local beekeeper with some bee experience that is interested in helping out. Spring is the best time of year to start. There are also plenty of legal options for observation hives that would work in a classroom, they just need to have removable frames so that the brood can be inspected.
  13. Also from the same web page: “What this result illustrates is missing, is the common ground that is characteristic of other industries when identifying, deciding and actioning priorities. We recognise that we need to keep working with the wider industry to find that common ground and to build stronger relationships through shared goals and priorities,” says Mr Wills. Easy to focus on negatives and typographical errors but please don't just cherrypick the bits that suit your argument. The above sentence does demonstrate that ApiNZ are aware that it was more than just the financial situation of the industry that resulted in a no vote. Admittedly it is also easy to shoot this comment down as I think it should read "We recognise that we need to START working with the wider industry..."
  14. What! You mean the same as in our general election to elect our parliament where someone who pays $5 tax a year gets 1 vote and someone who pays $10,000,000 tax a year also gets 1 vote?
  15. I agree. I had a bit of a rant about this very topic a while back...
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