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Posts posted by Stoney

  1. We have done this at work before, once to make splits for sale and the other for production hive Queen replacement... 

    split board is a mat with side entrance..

    made the “top” with 3-4 frames of brood and shake the box full of bees.. add a ripe cell.. 

    you need to box the QR parent on the bottom according to it’s strength, the “top” isn’t going to continue growing for a while as it has no laying queen and a lot of the bees will return to the parent below. 

    I’d imagine it a pain if you were planning to run this for a season and honeyflow as you gotta remove the top to work the bottom.


    • Like 1

  2. Chewing in my hives has been minimal this season, there has been some chewing but nothing like last seasons ferocious activity..

    and Theyve now hit the swarming switch.. this off / on, wet /hot weather hasn’t helped me much..

    i have scraped buckets of exposed drone brood from between the 2 brood boxes as I split them into singles.. I’ll be honest, I’ve seen 6 mites in one hives scrapings other than that it’s all beautiful white and healthy. 


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  3. 11 hours ago, Alastair said:


    But most of mine are just average colonies. The "big thumpers" do seem to be less likely to have a shotgun brood pattern but my question was not about that, it was about the ones that do have a shotgun brood pattern.

    It’s an interesting observation you have made.. however in my opinion, a shotgun brood pattern is caused from issues un related to ox/gl staples being placed in the hive. 

    My question was, do you notice the same effect following an oxalic dribble where the bees have consumed an amount of oxalic acid?.. 

    i haven’t used ox dribble before so have no idea of any negative effects observed following a dribble treatment.




  4. 3 minutes ago, tommy dave said:


    I'm very impressed by the experimental work that phil has been doing.

    Agree.. There are commercial beekeepers around here and I’m included that after last seasons issues would potentially not have been giving the kids much on the old dinner plate but for honeydew sandwiches... and she’s a bit runny for the Sammy option.... 


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  5. 3 minutes ago, Markypoo said:

    Excellent. I caught a swarm Oct 16 last year and put it onto undrawn foundation. there is always a niggling thought that they could be an AFB risk.


    I’m sure you will spot it on your regular inspections if it does show up. 

    When we find afb on a pallet we usually find another one or two on that pallet, sometimes up to a yr later.. which is interesting because we full brood check risk sites ( where afb has been found) every round of the season. 


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  6. I believe there is nothing illegal with this system, I am running a 2 part oxalic acid varroa treatment experiment on my hives... and openly communicating the results as I see them and as they happen.


    So after opening hundreds and hundreds of hives so far this season I’ve hardly seen a mite.. that feels pretty good. 

    What I have seen is a very fast build up of very clean bees on a seriously solid willow flow, my boots are soaked at the end of the day with nectar from the brood frames I’m inspecting..  while grinning like a fat cat. 

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  7. 39 minutes ago, John T said:


    @Trevor Gillbanks If one doesn't use undrawn frames for housing swarms, how long does it take for AFB to establish and/or symptoms are able to be detected? 

    From memory I think 12.5 days is the earliest for visible afb symptoms to appear .. but this will depend on the queen, as it may be a swarm with virgin.. which will take longer.

    Always afb check once the brood is capped  


    to reduce the chance of your swarm bees feeding larvae with infected honey and initiating the disease please always use foundation for swarms. 


    It’s industry best practice... simple as that.


    They draw the frames out incredibly fast and by the time it’s drawn the Queen is usually laying up a storm. 

  8. 30 minutes ago, Gino de Graaf said:

    Yeah, was thinking the same thing.

    I dribbled mid Winter. Not much brood so hard to judge. The dribble is short exposure, compared to strips. 

    My experience with big staple chewing thumper colonies shows no signs of shotgun brood patterns or any negative effects at all other than where some of them remove the comb to avoid the wide staple. 


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  9. 2 hours ago, Alastair said:

    First time using this so have done some hives with staples and some with bayvarol. Have just completed doing the 4 week strip replacement, and have noticed that a lot (not all) the hives with staples have a scattered brood pattern compared to the bayvarol'ed hives, I'm theorising that some OA has entered the food supply and killing just emerged eggs. Expecting this situation to right itself over time.


    We now live in a time where our bees have pathogens of all types, that were just not a factor in pre varroa days. If my theory about some OA in the food is correct and a lot of larvae have a higher than normal level of OA in their stomachs, I'm wondering if this might have a positive effect on pathogen levels.


    Just a theory, any thoughts?

    I’ve not used oxalic /syrup drizzle before but is this effect also noted when bees are dribbled? 

  10. I think after the colony has spent some time in “the gym” it will need to relax....


    I’m offering the all new, never seen before, revolutionary..  “BEE LOUNGE” 

    for the reduced opening special wonderfully wonderfull price of $299..

    this gets you a parrafin dipped pine Full depth “large lounge” area box, filled with fully capped honey frames..

    in this ultra trendy box your bees can enter and find “all the work has been done” therefore they can waggle dance together or simple just hang around with the girls. 


    Message me to place your orders but be quick, these won’t last long at this price. 

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  11. 3 minutes ago, cBank said:

    I had a hive go queenless (it’s likely I killed her by accident). It was a strong hive and getting big fast. There were heaps of emergency cells, so I made 2 splits with the best ones and left 2 nice ones in the hive. They’ll sort it out and the best queen will win right?

    Yup, they sorted it out. What an idiot.


    You may have mistaken “emergency” cells with swarm cells.. the old queen does not lay eggs right up to the big exit.. often there is no sign of the old queen as the first virgins emerge.. 

    yesterday we had a rager in a yard, they were all ragers  but  this one was big, no eggs, no marked Q, only 5-6 day old Q sign,  the bees appear to do a “stop and vibrate” dance at this point of swarming..

    I figure communicating the imminent first virgins emergence.. 

    there is definitely a point of no return where it doesn’t really matter the manipulation you perform they will still go hang in a bush.. 


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  12. 1 hour ago, M4tt said:

    Whenever I’ve made queenless nucs with an open or capped queen cell on a frame from another hive , it’s always  been torn down and they’ve started again . 

    Hard case and possibly not very helpful to the thread but I have the opposite to Matt, 

    I regularly use Q cells built via swarm urge and place in a freshly made nuc using all the same bees/ brood. 

    I find mixing up bees from different colonies they will draw their own cells from eggs and remove any existing.  


    I use cells staged from an egg in cup through to emerging always made from the same bees/colony and with good success. 

  13. 6 hours ago, M4tt said:

    Mine aren’t chewing either , but they aren’t through the middle anymore so they are possibly not as inclined to remove them . 

    Last season at this time ours were flat out removing them and they were placed opposite ends as per my method.. just an interesting note really.. not sure why as strength is definitely there. .. 

    I mean some are certainly removing them but overall nothing like last season..

    this season round here is poles apart from the last .. thank the gods, having a very good willow flow currently things are extremely positive. Regular rain to boot. 

    Last year we got a springs worth of rain during the Manuka’s  patchy flowering. 

    • Good Info 1

  14. Oxalic staples may be a good option as there would be a couple of good folds worth in each one.. 

    Anyhoo... interesting to see this seasons chewing has been fairly  minimal, staples in end of August, bees built well and had top splits made above entranced mat placing a ripe cell, mating appears good so far with a couple more days to wait for capped brood.. downstairs in the engine room last yrs queens are chugging away on a nice willow flow and the  miteless colony is barely touching the staples. 

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  15. The weather round here has been classic spring with snow on the lawn to extremely warm and mild changeable by the hour, nectar sources in abundance for the girls between heavy rain showers.. 

    I’m doubling my own numbers this spring so splitting is my sole focus...

    lids off a site this morning, queens found and sitting on frames outside the box.. trailer set up with floors and boxes etc to be filled with brood and a fresh caged Q when the Southerly hit with force.. blowing mats frames and lids out into the paddock filled with Hereford cows and their calves.. aah ya gotta love it... 

    i was left caught between saving gear from heavy hooves, closing up what I had opened and stopping more gear from flying off the ute. 

    The forecast was there.. as was the looming dark front but ya gotta keep on pushin if ya wanna get anywhere I spose. 

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  16. 13 hours ago, Nuc_man said:

    Who doing the importing guess that's why pollen market gone to pack aswell 

    Health food companies. My understanding is there was nowhere near enough produced here to meet these companies needs therefore it is imported.. this of course has an effect on prices paid out per kg here. 

    To me there’s no difference to imported Propolis or any other product imported and sitting on retail shelves in NZ. 

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  17. Pollen is another bee product that is imported into nz in bulk ..( 40ft containers full) I have been told first hand of how incredible it is to see a container full of perfectly mono coloured pollen unlike our locally produced mixed floral source ‘real’ multi coloured pollen. 

    • Sad 2

  18. 9 hours ago, yesbut said:

    Don't  even joke about eating Kereru please. They're disappearing fast. Our mob is down to three now, it's depressing. 

    It will be the damn cats eating them.. 

    Plenty of kereru round here , they’re so fat they almost clip the ground as they flap furiously for height 

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  19. 1 hour ago, nikki watts said:

    my Observations 

    In damp or hives under 6 frames of bees most of our queens are cowering in a corner as far away as she can get from the staples. Often away from the stores too, the hives seem a bit disorganised and very little brood is being raised.



    These 6 frame colonies.. how much brood do they have compared to how many staples they’re sharing a box with..? 

    If they are clean of mites I would pull them out and let them come away and build up. 

    I think we should be more aware of mite loads and treat accordingly.. 

    if they are below the critical mass then treat them with an alternative until they have increased in mass.. and can once again handle the acid. 

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