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nikki watts

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Everything posted by nikki watts

  1. That’s all that was recorded in their minutes so hopefully it’s just poorly recorded rather than poor science.
  2. From the SNI beekeepers newsletter. ’Oxalic staples need to be replaced after a month, and the oxalic burns the pads off the feet of the bees. ‘ Care to comment @Philbee
  3. The second queen may have Already been in there. it’s not that uncommon for two queens to go through winter.
  4. Nice one. Maybe just hang on his stand and find a buyer ?!
  5. Me too. When I first started I opened an really nasty hive. They got into my veil (first, not the last time I forgot to do it up) Naturally I ran screaming off into the bush. When I composed myself and went back to put the hive back togeather I couldn’t find the hive tool. I must have dropped it into the hive. Well, I wasn’t going to take them on again that day so I didn’t look too hard for it. A while later my supervisor was going to come with me to that site, I thought I’d better get in there and retrieve that hive tool before she saw how useless I was. I Opened hive and they attacked again and got into my hood again. Cue more running and screaming. When I stopped running I looked down and found my missing hive tool !! 🤣🥴
  6. Very true. And I guess if I didn’t know better I’d think I was buying a bargain. The laws really need reworking to make all Manuka labelling a level playing field. One unit of measure, one definition of what is manuka for export and/or domestic market.
  7. A hopelessly queenless hive is a walking dead hive, if you sacrifice the queen you may save the worker bees. Shaking all the bee out as above is a way to get rid of the old queen of you cant find her. Please just remember to do an afb check on what’s left of the old brood. You’re not likely to see it in the drone brood (doesn’t mean you shouldn’t open cells to check) but look carefully for black scale in empty worker brood cells. The AFB PMP website has a good 5 min refresher clip and quiz.
  8. Hang on....The jar says it’s manuka honey whilst the box says multi floral. How can they sell multi floral as Manuka for export ? An mgo of 40 certainly suggests multi not mono.
  9. If the bees are calm on the frames there’s a good chance the queen is still there. There’s a certain sound (roar) that queenless hives make. once you recognised the queen less behaviour it’s a lot easier to tell. My first commercial winter I decided to be commercial I had to be ruthless. I went around early spring and combined all the ’queenless’ hives... We had about 40% losses that year 🥴
  10. Yes. It’s like winter has finally turned up and dumped a whole winter worth of rain in 3 weeks. The ground is so wet our Ute got stuck on the lawn, and we live in top of a hill.
  11. I don’t think we’ll be grafting for a few weeks either. Far to wet and windy.
  12. Sorry for your loss. What lowlifes, hopefully natural justice/fate whatever you want to call it takes care of them.
  13. I’ll collect some from the next hive with these symptoms. We had our bees tested as part of the exotic pest surveillance. I’ll have a look back through the results and see if we had any virus present back then. 728 !!! Wow 😱. Out of how many of you don’t mind me asking ?
  14. Do you think they have been weakened by disease or virus loads ?? Some of ours I can put down to me not requeening in autumn when I should have, but others I’m just not sure about. I’ve afb checked and can’t see any sign of that.
  15. Scary. Are you just finding empty hives ? Any signs of abandoned brood or drone brood ? Our losses are all a mixed bag of reasons. Big hives that starved out over winter, drone laying. And the ones that worry me, the ones that look like they just dwindled down until the last cold snap took them out. A hand sized patch of abandoned brood, some stores and dead bees in cluster.
  16. Yep. I think lots of energy is used up defending. We’d still have robbing here if we aren’t careful. a couple of days ago I saw 6-8 wasps having a go at at single box hive I’d just moved into a site. With overcrowding bees are probably having to fly further to get a feed too.
  17. Ours are all a mixed bag too. Some hives are still on 3 boxes and some that have dwindled down to nuc size. Only a handful of dead outs so far. 🙏🤞 We don’t feed over winter so i think some may have just been too strong for their own good. The weak ones mostly are very low in stores. Only 1 has gone drone so far but we ran out of time for re queening in autumn so that’s likely a contributing factor in queens not laying as much. I also believe overcrowding on winter sites is also a factor. We have a site that’s well away from anyone else and the hives there are Waaay better than the others.
  18. a strong vinegar taste. Hmmm. Perhaps mine needed replacing after all. They were Unpleasant but no screwed up face.
  19. Not sure about salty. I tasted some over wintered ones yesterday and they were still acidic but def not salty.
  20. Sorry for your loss, gold star for spotting the afb though.
  21. That’s stunning. I can see why you put up with the wind and rain to live there.
  22. No. Some of us northerners like chip buttys.
  23. In all business’s there is a cost for professional development. Although not cheap I still see value in going. I especially like hearing about new science discoveries. Also it is our only holiday each year and we really enjoy catching up with fellow beeks, some we only see at conference and really miss them if they don’t attend.
  24. You may be better to combine the two hives and split off again in spring. Better to have one strong hive than two weak ones. Also if you used synthetic strips that were still in the hives yeasterday you may have treated too late.
  25. I made ours from a shade canopy fabric called suntex. It has a stronger weave than the usual shade cloth. Costs more but lasts a lot longer and is uv resistant so if you have to shift hives during the day it helps keep the heat down.
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