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john berry

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john berry last won the day on September 16

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  • Beekeeping Experience
    Commercial Beekeeper


  • Location
    Hawke's Bay

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  1. If you put a ripe cell in at the same time as you make the nuke up they are less likely to start raising queens of their own and I believe less likely to swarm. Every area and every hive is different so you can only generalise when it comes to swarming.
  2. I was once to a little bit of re-queening at home and had a couple of cells left over which I forgot about and left on a hive lid. The next morning they were hatching out quite happily. I think it pays to be as careful as you can be with temperature but there is no doubt you will damage ripe cells a lot quicker with heat then you will with a little bit of cold.
  3. I know how you feel. The strong winds up here are really knocking my broomstick around.
  4. And that my friends is why I do 99% of my Queen rearing in autumn.
  5. I used to work with a beekeeper who came from Canterbury originally and he reckoned our Norwest winds were a gentle zephyr compared to what they get down there.
  6. It might be safer to put the cells in after you have move the nukes but on the other hand if you open them up after shifting to insert the cells then you will probably have quite a few bees flying away. The wing buds on the young Queens are quite delicate and if you damage them by rough handling then they cannot mate so whatever you do be very gentle. On balance I think I would put the cells in after shifting the hives but either method should work as long as you are really gentle.
  7. It was over 40 years ago but we had a summer where the Norwester blew every day for the whole summer. You would get up in the morning and it would be dead calm and then just as it was warm enough for the bees to fly away it would go. As an aside does anyone know why the Norwest one tends to be worse in the daytime rather than night. I know when it's a real gale it will blow 24 /7 but at least round here most of the time it's a daytime wind.
  8. The bees are no longer lost. They have all mysteriously turned up right next to my apiarys. Would those that have lost them please come and take them away.
  9. Personally I think there is a benefit from having a mix of ages in your brood when making up a nuc.I find that nucleus hives made up with at least some young brood hold onto their bees better. It pays not to put your nucleus hives too close to strong Queen right hives as a lot of bees can drift into them. As for cells I put them straight in and the same for cage Queens. There was an old theory that leaving them queenless for 24 hours or so made them more accepting of cells\queens et cetera but that is not the case and a truly queenless hive is generally harder to re-queen than one that h
  10. As far as I can see most of the flowers in Hawke's Bay are coming out at about their normal time. Hives are probably a week or two behind largely because they are still suffering from the effects of last autumn's drought. Any drought is damaging to farmers but there is a difference between a Taranaki drought where they get worried if it doesn't rain for two weeks and bees generally do really well when it's a bit dry and a Hawke's Bay drought where everything is dead and stays that way for months.
  11. I would not be happy about a per kilogram fee as my average is a lot higher than the pathetic New Zealand average. This also means there are a lot of beekeepers out there who produce next to nothing and they are often the ones that cause the problem.
  12. It's hot and windy here. I was up against the mountains this morning and it was cool and very windy with just the odd tiny spot of rain. I hate Norwest winds. They change me from a friendly, fun loving beekeeper into a grumpy old man.
  13. James. You have two audits a year because that is the way some bureaucrat has interpreted the law. It's like harvest declarations and being a registered beekeeper. Parliament makes the laws and bureaucrats interpret them and then reinterpret them. I doubt most of them even know the contempt the average beekeeper has for their petty expensive little rules. It's not even as if they do any good. All those bits of paper and all that traceability and they still couldn't work out who was stretching manuka. My uncle and my grandfather used to take them on every now and again and they
  14. Most beekeepers don't have a major AFB problem but we're all just one mistake away from having one.
  15. I occasionally see fuchsia pollen and my understanding is that it's quite sticky and if the bees bump into a piece of grass on the way into the hive then it will stretch out like a piece of blue cotton. I have heard of fuchsia honey but have never tried it although I would love to. Possums cleaned out most of the trees in Hawke's Bay many years ago. We mostly see it way up in the mountains but I have seen a growing naturally right on the coast as well.
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