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Daley last won the day on November 17

Daley had the most liked content!

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About Daley

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    Guard Bee


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    Commercial Beekeeper


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  1. Type of Mask/respirator

    When it comes to respirators I always buy the best one I can afford. Usually the more the cost the better they are
  2. Can coarse grained honey be made fine grain?

    I would recommend jarring your honey while it’s still liquid, makes things a lot easier
  3. When you are new and learning to work a hive it’s good to start on the 2nd from the outside frame, push the other frames over carefully as far as you can to make space, when you lift frames, pry them up and then slowly pull them out if you feel any resistance stop and have a look, sometimes it can be drone comb sticking out or a little bit of bridging between the frames, if you are scraping it on other frames you need to stop and make some more room as this is how you can roll your queen or squash her. You can always work from the other side if one side is too tricky and clean up the other side for next time when you have some room to work. How many frames are in your brood box? It is good to have 10, this will still give you some wiggle room but it should stop the bees bridging their combs. If there are big lumpy bits of drone comb that are going to cause damage to the other frames when you return them to the box or with future inspections give them a check for the queen, gently shake the bees off and cut the offending pieces off, the bees will remake them. The bees will fix anything you damage as long as you don’t squash the queen, and technically they can fix that too. Usually I will take out that second frame temporarily lean it on the hive on its end, and take out the outside frame and put the first one I took back in, as the second frame in often has brood on, you shouldn’t leave brood out of the hive when it can be avoided, as it can either chill in the cold or be cooked by the sun on a hot day. You can use an empty super if you don’t like putting your frames on the ground. It does begin to feel a lot more natural the more you do it, I remember feeling like a ham fisted amateur, it wasn’t that long ago 😂
  4. NZBF Is my hive about to swarm?

    I found this thread a little confusing and hard to follow. You have a lot of knowledge of what can happen with you bees @JasonK and that’s really cool. Bees can be very confusing, so if you haven’t seen things before it can be hard to figure out what’s happening and it can look to be a lot of different things. I would say, that your hive either superseded, or it swarmed. With the info I’ve got my money is on supersedure, reason being, queens don’t go from hatching to laying in a week. If you have had eggs the entire time you either had two queens, one mated and one virgin, or it was a miracle mating (which isn’t entirely out of the question but unlikely, the quickest I’ve ever seen is about 10 days in 30 degree heat) Your old queen most likely died or was evicted from the hive when the new queen started laying. Can I ask what made you think she was a drone layer? Was it just the capped drone brood? Or were there multiple eggs in the cells? Multiple eggs with an older mated queen are a sure fire way to tell she is on her way out, if she still has some single eggs and you are starting to see multiples and you see queen cells they are very likely to be supersedure cells. With a new queen they can lay a few multiples for a while or sometimes if you introduce caged mated queens they can lay multiples for a little bit too. Supersedure cells are usually in the centre of the frames, usually you will only get a couple. Swarm cells are usually down the sides, or between the two boxes, and there will be heaps of them. Sometimes you can have a mated old queen, a virgin, and still have some gooey looking queen cells, that’s always a fun time while you try and figure out what the heck is going on. One hive the other week I saw 4 virgins running around and cells still hatching, they didn’t seem interested in killing each other, usually the first will knock the rest off before they can even get out, I closed it up and wrote what the heck on the lid to come back later. It is hard to say you have a drone layer without having multiple eggs even if it seems you have a lot of capped drone brood. Unless there is no worker brood, at this time of year the bees will make a lot of drone brood as a sign of the colony’s wealth. Any hive that looks like that should have another box on it, it won’t do them any harm once you are nearing summer, it will be warm enough for them, and it’s good for them to know they have lots of space for increase before they need it. They will start working on it when they’re ready. I don’t have any hives that are still singles at this time of year, even when I’ve just made a split at the moment I’ll box it up.
  5. Can coarse grained honey be made fine grain?

    Yep you could convert a fridge into a microwave if you were clever but it probably wouldn’t be very safe. You can get large commercial microwaves but they’re ridiculously expensive and I don’t think any would quite fit a 20ltr bucket
  6. Can coarse grained honey be made fine grain?

    I think Rob is suggesting it may cook swimmers, or other vital reproductive parts
  7. New Zealand swarm dates for season 2017/18

    I’m sometimes a swarm creator, I always endeavour to catch my own swarms though when possible and I try my best to stop them leaving. I think if we’re being honest most people are both
  8. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    The kiwifruit bee talk went really well thank goodness, took a long time to get things across from English to Chinese so quite a bit of waiting while the 3 translators were chattering away. It was pretty scary at first, as soon as I got out of the truck they started taking photos of me, I would’ve had my photo taken at least 100 times. I think they were pretty fascinated by the bees, showed them some empty gear on the truck and told them a bit about the bees and the syrup feeding. Went down to the hives showed them in the tops of the hives with the feeders on and we watched the bees coming and going. Waaay too cold to open any. Nobody got stung fortunately and the growers were super happy with me for coming to talk to their guests. Was a pretty intense and interesting experience, the people all seemed really nice, had lots of laughs. I’d probably do it again 😊
  9. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    The money’s not that good. Like it’s ok, but sometimes kiwifruit is just hard going. I definitely don’t hate it but it’s such a busy time of year with the bees with swarming, moving in and out of the kiwis and feeding you end up spread pretty thin and working pretty long hours. If I factored in all the hive manipulation I’d done for the pollination hives this year I wouldn’t be making very good money at all. Mostly because the hives were too strong and I had to continually knock them back so they would gather pollen and not nectar otherwise they full up and won’t pollinate properly. The blocks I’ve got aren’t too bad as they’re not in the thick of all the other orchards so my bees aren’t competing as much as some are, they don’t go backwards in the kiwifruit and usually come out screaming for another box. They’re probably no worse than usual but in the kiwis you visit them to feed or whatever when your supposed to not when you would normally choose to so you can end up seeing them on a grumpy day. I actually was really concerned this year moving down to the flats for pollination as there are a load of new commercial amateurs with serious disease problems, I hope I’ve dodged a bullet there but I’ll be keeping a very close eye on my polli hives just in case. There are some real losers beekeeping here at the moment it gives me the creeps.
  10. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    They’re at the row ends but the weather here has been really awful, meant to be much the same tomorrow, southerly and rain most of the day. I would be surprised if they were flying today, the ones at home weren’t. They probably won’t be out tomorrow either, MetService thinks 17 but I feel they are overstating it.
  11. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    Good idea I was planning on telling them there was about 40,000ish bees in each hive
  12. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    I find that syrup gets them riled up too. When I was giving them their last feed they were pretty stingy. I hope they've calmed down some, I really don't want them to sting anyone during the walk round.
  13. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    I would usually, but not after 3 syrup feeds and bad weather.
  14. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    I would but its tomorrow at 1:30 so it's likely there isn't time. I know a little, but these are generally fairly technical people, I used to go to the pollination meetings for the growers that they had here every year but its been a few years. Plus I am always slightly intimidated speaking publicly to adults, I have only learned how to manage a room full of school kids. Haha thanks, that makes me feel better. I think she just asked me because my bees are in her orchard so it was easy to twist my arm. Plus people seem to find me novel compared to a middle aged man. Hopefully they won't have a good grasp of english and won't know what I'm saying anyway
  15. November 2017 Beekeeping Diary

    My kiwifruit grower rang me this arvo and asked if I had time to come for a talk tomorrow at their orchard, I said yes, then she told me she had 17 people from China other kiwifruit growers and Zespri people and the like, and now I have to talk to them about bee pollination of kiwifruit I've been trying to do research all evening about what on earth I'm going to say and do you think I can find a Zespri pollination manual anywhere?! Like why is that darn thing so top secret. Could be quite interesting... definitely less than ideal lol I'm just going to have to wing it. Like I know what beehives I put in and why and how I manage them to try prevent them swarming in the kiwis and such but I really don't know anything about kiwifruit. I wonder how I get myself into these spots lol