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john berry

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Everything posted by john berry

  1. I assume an AP one can go onto private land to inspect beehives. They absolutely can direct an AP2 to go on to private land to inspect a beehive.Except in unusual circumstances it's normal to try and get the beekeepers permission but they cannot be stopped and if necessary can use the police to ensure access is granted. My experience tended to be that the worst offenders were the least happy about having their hives inspected but I never had any real problems . Hopefully in the future new methods of detection such as honey samples will pretty much mean that only beekeepers that need
  2. The AFB PMP now has an in-house AP1 which is a huge change from only having government employees in the role. The decision to do this has a lot of ramifications mostly I think for the good. In the past AP1 s have done an excellent job but have had to work with their own bureaucracies which has caused problems at times especially when it comes to things like prosecutions.
  3. I may be completely wrong on this Nick but my understanding is that under the AFB PMP destruction can only be ordered on hives that have clinical symptoms of AFB. It appears that the management agency has been using other legislation to order the destruction of stored gear with a high likelihood of being infected with AFB. Depending on how you see things this is either a clever use of legislation to help clean up AFB in outfits that are hopelessly compromised by their own incompetence or an attack on individual beekeepers rights and who are they going to target next. Given the numb
  4. I have had hives survive floods before. It doesn't do them any good but they can recover. If the water was clean then you shouldn't have too many problems but if it was full of silt then you will have to replace those combs that have been underwater. Bees can clean up a lot of things but silt isn't one of them. I guess if you have plastic frames you could water blast them but about all you could do with wood and wax was burn them. Personally I would leave them alone for at least a couple of weeks to dry out a bit and then sort through them. I know what it's like to have hives flooded and
  5. The miniconference is being organised by the Waikato branch. Apparently the information should be out there but not everyone has received it for some reason . Hopefully this will be rectified over the next few days.
  6. I was on a big search and rescue exercise once for a dope grower. He dropped the heavy stuff like fertiliser first and the plants last. After a couple of days he made it out to a hut, worked out where he was and promptly got lost again. By the time we found him I think he was probably eyeing up his dog for the next meal .They don't call it dope for nothing. My brother was working bees in a bush block one time when another one opened up on him with a high calibre rifle. Fortunately they tend to be not very good shots either.
  7. I haven't heard anything either Nick. I will make some inquiries today.
  8. the manuka bubble has not popped but it is definitely not increasing in size anymore and indeed is showing some signs of deflating. Despite all the hype we hear about the market there are a lot of beekeepers with a lot of stock. It was pretty good for manuka production last season and there is now a large oversupply.
  9. Undersupply helps keep prices up and is way better than oversupply. I have no idea what this foreign propolis is like, it might be fantastic stuff which makes you wonder why they can't sell under their own country's name. Hopefully one day a reporter will look into the entire beekeeping industry in New Zealand and I for one will be quite happy to name and shame those who deserve it. Just because something is legal doesn't mean you should do it.
  10. I had to move a really good site years ago because the farmer got sick of the gate being stolen and decided to just fence it off. Unfortunately theft of this kind is not treated seriously by the police probably because it's not worth the effort to get someone slipped over the wrist with a wet bus ticket. Vehicle theft seems to be treated the same way and it is nothing new. Over 30 years ago a friend had is motorbike stolen and even though he knew exactly where it was the police would do nothing. I have worked a lot with the police the years and have a tremendous amount of respect for
  11. It is absolutely normal to reuse frames from hives that have died. The secret to success is not so much knowing why the hive died but judging just how good you are at reading the signs. Some people underestimate their abilities but an awful lot overestimate and I have seen innumerable occasions when someone thought they had no problem at all with AFB when in reality they really did. Get someone who really knows what they are talking about to have a look. Your next problem is sorting out those that really know what they are talking about . In the meantime you would be well advised to
  12. At the moment New Zealand beekeepers are producing far more propolis than they can sell. Cheap imports, repackaged and sent overseas in misleading packaging have destroyed the New Zealand propolis market. Contains local and overseas ingredients. I wonder what the local ingredient is because it sure ain't any of my propolis.
  13. And that sadly is what passes for journalism in New Zealand today. If only stuff would look a bit deeper into the story they would find a fascinating little back story.
  14. This was a mistake that should have been quickly and quietly fixed in-house. It has detracted from the good work that has been going on and overall I think both the board and the management team have been doing a really good job with a lot of new initiatives that have and will reduce the incidence of AFB. I would still like the board to be made up of elected members rather than appointed members. The current process leaves many beekeepers feeling disenfranchised.
  15. Pine needles are definitely my fuel of choice. Dry needles are great on days when you just need a little bit of smoke but I like to have one dry bag and one quite damp bag. Once the smoke is going well on dry needles then top up with damp needles and it will go for hours. Do not use Maritime Pine, needles unless you want to work with a headache all day.
  16. Sorry Adam it was not meant to be harsh. It was intended as a wry comment on the difference between beekeeper dreamers and marketing realists. I tend to side with the beekeeper dreamers but I have been round for a while and understand that the price you can get for export honey basically sets the price for local honey. I also know that 10 new brands on the market doesn't mean 10 times as much honey sold. It just means someone gains some sales and someone loses them. The other thing that seems perennial in marketing is that producer packers do everything they can to maintain the price of h
  17. I can and do put apiarys into a quarantine system in which I can identify that hives either to an apiary or having come from that apiary. I have never done quarantine on my own honey boxes but I have many times used a gear quarantine when taking over someone else's hives, normally just for the first season. When it comes to finding AFB in newly purchased hives I have found over the years that it is least likely to show up in early spring and very likely to turn up during a dearth period in late spring followed by a splattering when taking off honey in autumn. When purchasing hives I used
  18. And they say marketers have no souls.
  19. Symptoms for covid are very similar to common cold symptoms except for covid having a dry cough. I along with half my friends have a wet cough which is not one of the symptoms fortunately. I don't know why everybody is worrying about the foreign seamen, I'm sure they behave themselves impeccably and keep at least 2 m away from the ship girls.
  20. Day 10 of man flu . Had fun coughing all night. Glad I don't have any beekeeping to do at the moment.
  21. I was going to start up the forge yesterday and make some hive tools. This was going to be my last beekeeping job for the winter but a bad dose of man flue has kept me inside for the last four days. I was really crook yesterday so my darling wife gave me some Harker herbal deep lung support. It's stronger tasting than Lanes emulsion although perhaps not quite so unpleasant and once you start breathing again you seem to get a different flavour or scent every time you breathe in or out.If I had to guess I would say it had almost every essential oil you can get plus a bit of horse liniment mixed
  22. Can't make up my mind so I think I will try one from each supplier. So far I have a nice looking veil from ceracell ,It's white with red racing strips . Might be a bit heavy for summer use.
  23. Unless like me you have done a lot of inspection work over the years you just wouldn't believe some of the things I have seen. Totally abandoned apiarys (with and without AFB), years of varoa treatments all still in the hives, Starved hives, robbed out AFB, stolen hives, apiarys spread to the four winds(With and without AFB), hives that fell apart with rot, hives seven or eight boxes high with honey that hadn't been taken off in years, Apple box hives and of course lots of well looked after hives a lot of which had contracted AFB from one of the aforementioned idiots. As inspectors we w
  24. I found the quickest way to put in apivar was to grasp that little triangle shaped tag and give it a quick firm tug to the point of almost ripping it off. It then sits quite nicely and although doing this is a pain is not as bad as sticking matches or nails into it.Another way that worked quite well was to rip them all apart and then bend the top over and give it a good whack with a hammer on either side. They hang nicely this way. I have talked to the suppliers about the problems with this product and how some pretty simple changes would make it a lot more user-friendly
  25. I am loathe to make long-term weather predictions but I have been chasing bees around for a long time and when mother nature gives me weather like l have had this autumn\winter I tend to make sure my mud tires are ready for the spring and will have another look on the net for a rain proof bee veil. I don't know why but it has been many many years since we last had a truly awful spring, they used to be pretty common and I remember having three bad ones in a row. Can't say that I miss them..
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