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Posts posted by Nedeljko

  1. 9 minutes ago, Maggie James said:


    Another option. If you have a friend with a lifestyle block several km away, put the hives on a trailer, leaves hives on trailer at friends for seven days, then take to new site.  If the trailer doesn't hold all you hives, shift them in two shifts.  Shift them when the bees aren't flying and you don't need to block entrances.  Just don't stop at petrol stations and shops!

    If the hives are balanced on the trailer properly (consider centre of gravity), you should be able to disconnect from vehicle and put blocks under the tow bar, and of course a block under each wheel to stop movement. 

    You need to ask yourself, why you have got one weak hive?  If you don't know the answer, don't amalgamate with the others - a great way to spread AFB

    Thanks Maggie,
    One weak hive I have is because it was in a nucleus over winter and I introduced a new queen cell in November. It was examined by me and an AFB officer and we didn't find any AFB. I am a DECA holder and make sure I inspect any suspicious hives. Good question and thank you for your observation. 

    • Like 1

  2. Thanks Trevor,
    I have 11 strong hives and one weak hive. I imagine there would be a lot of foragers coming to that weak hive. 
    Those 11 will stay without a forager for couple of weeks until the new ones come.
    I was thinking to experiment with 2 hives and try the method with a newspaper and leave a nucleus box at the old position in case foragers go back.

  3. Thank you all for your thoughts. Much appreciated. 
    I came to a hand shake agreement that I will move my hives over period of one to 2 months max., after I do my harvesting and boxes get lighter again.
    Now, I am planning to move my hives 80-90m further down the hill away from the sight, below the steep banks and behind 20m tall trees. However in bees eyes this is only a few wing flaps away and I need to plan how to move the hives so close away from its original position. 
    Back in Serbia, where I am from I heard that you can actually move the hives without taking them 2km away for 3 weeks by closing their entrance with 10 sheets of newspaper. You prick a little hole (0.5mm) through the paper to encourage the bees to chew their way out. After couple of days they make it through a little stressed and will start re-mapping the new area without going back to the original place.
    Has anyone in NZ got an experience on moving the hives close distance successfully.
    Thank you all for your participation so far... :D 

    • Good Info 1

  4. On 7/12/2019 at 8:34 AM, Alastair said:

    I'm not sure Ned which house at your site has the problem. But what I have found in similar situations is that bees will fly over houses that are at the same level or lower than the apiary, but much less likely to fly over them if they are higher than the apiary. Unless there is a natural flight path caused by trees or similar over that house.

    Hey Alastair, it is those houses on the right hand side as you come down the driveway. Actually there are 3 new neighbours who moved in and all have the same problem.

    On 7/12/2019 at 8:34 AM, Alastair said:


    If the houses in question are higher than your apiary, I would suggest moving the apiary down the drive to a lower location on the same property, this will almost certainly make the problem go away. But if the new houses are lower on the property there may be little you can do. 

    These houses are higher and above my apiary. The bees fly over and it does look like my bees pooed all over their property. I have been there for 5 years and I will remove my hives to the lower part of the property which is about 80-90m further down and about 150m away from the complaining houses. It is all away from their sight, below the steep bank and huge trees. Hopefully that resolves the matter. Thanks

    On 6/12/2019 at 11:15 PM, kaihoka said:

    I feel very sorry for you .

    If it were me I would be so pissed off .

    I can't be pissed off as there are 5 houses and 4 of them complain. I understand it is a problem to them and will try to find the best solution for everyone by removing the hives 150m away from the neighbours. THanks

    • Like 1

  5. 38 minutes ago, john berry said:

    If people want to live in the country they should accept that livestock and the noises and messes they make are part of the deal. They should go back to town. 

    This is the problem we will see more and more in the big cities. Auckland can't spread any further and it will grow compact and dense from now on. This new section is next to a lifestyle block where people have sheep and my bees. 

    Thank you all for your quick answers. I will try to buy some time and will look for a new location. First need to harvest the honey to make it lighter. 

  6. I need an advice on what to do with a complaint of a new neighbour who recently moved into a brand new house about 50m away from my apiary. I have 12 busy hives on a lifestyle block near the newly developed section in Schnapper Rock, Auckland area. The section next door was built around 3-4 months ago and I had my beehives next door for about 4 years now. I need time to find a new apiary location and my hives are super heavy now with 2-3 supers full of honey. I am a hobby beekeeper and don't have a crane or a lift to move that easily. 
    The neighbour seems to be very upset and sends me messages like this: "So please move your beehives asap please...my house got damaged from your bees ..and getting serious now..", "Not only the house ..Cars. all windows and door paint etc., and even I can't hang to dry my washed clothes at out side of my home...', "Sp please tell me when can you move your beehives. Thank you" 
    From another phone number: "Hi there, it's Jenny and Andre here, we live next door to the property where you keep your beehives. We and our neighbors  have major issues with your bees pooing over our houses, windows, cars. Our brand new house is covered in sticky, yellow bee poop, we are unable to hang any washing outside and our cars are covered in the bees poop as well. We have spoken to your friend who lives at the property last night and would like to ask you to move the beehives away from the current location ASAP to avoid further complications with damages to our properties. Please advise, Regards Jenny.

    Please advise on what to do here and if there is any rule or law around this.
    Your time (especially during early December) is much appreciated.

    • Sad 1

  7. 5 hours ago, Alastair said:

    Gotta say Ned, when we worked your hives together last week, I was impressed with what nice bees they were, and also how much honey they have gathered thus far. 🙂

    Thank you Alastair and thank you for your hard work on discovering those neglected AFB hives that put us all in danger. I hope you find them all. Good luck!

    • Like 1

  8. 5 minutes ago, frazzledfozzle said:

    cant say I’ve read any research notes on these conclusions ?

    not saying there isn’t any but would love to know if there’s any actual truth in any of it. 

    For the research you can start here - 

    I have one Italian and one Carniolan hives next to each other on an urban site. Italians were larger in numbers in an early spring. Once the nectar flow starts Carniolan overtake quickly and brought more honey. Carniolans lead by a 3/4 box of honey so far. 
    I am sure Italians are great for the Mediterranean type of climate but Carniolans are better by far for NZ in my opinion.
    Also, it is worth mentioning that cross-breed or (Tiger queens) have also interesting and some of the features we all love. hygiene, honey yield, etc. 
    Dr Peter Dearden from University of Otago mentions that we have large variety of genes in NZ and also some that are only present in NZ. 


  9. Please give it to me. Many reasons i would go for a Carniolan queen.
    Carniolans respond quickly to changes in nectar and pollen availability.
    They can build up a workforce and break it down more quickly than Italians. They
    fly at colder temperatures. They may be less susceptible to brood pathogens, diseases may spread more slowly in a Carniolan apiary.
    They are commonly agreed to be as gentle as Italians. Italians don’t forage as far as Carniolans. Italians keep large number of bees after the nectarflow stops and therefore consume more honey. True, they may want to swarm more but I can manage that. My Carniolans aren't aggressive.

    • Like 1

  10. Wasps trap that works for me. Cut the top part of a plastic bottle and turn upside down as shown in the attached picture. Pour in half coca cola and half beer. It will only attract wasps and hornets (there are no hornets in NZ). If there is frequent rain this method won't work as the rain fall will fill the bottle up. In that case you may drill holes on the upper part of the plastic bottle. Does anyone use this method or similar?


    • Agree 1

  11. I do not know why most of Kiwi BKs are so opinionated about Carniolan bees. Each type of bees has its pros and cons and each type is good considering the climate they originate from. Carniolans are better off in colder climates. I have some cross striped Queens and I like them a lot. They are very gentle. I only use smoker around them. Each type of bees can be little over protective when opened during bad weather. What I like about dark bees is that they can reduce number of bees at the end of the season and they have less brood in winter which further means less varroa mites. Here are some other pros and cons

    Pros: Carniolans respond quickly to changes in nectar and pollen availability. They can build up a workforce and break it down more quickly than Italians. They fly at colder temperatures. They may be less susceptible to brood pathogens and don’t rob as often, so diseases may spread more slowly in a Carniolan apiary. They are commonly agreed to be as gentle as Italians.
    Cons: These bees are much more likely to swarm. They may be slow to build up, but keep in mind that if resources are limited this can be an advantage. It can be difficult to see the darker queen with this race of bee. 


    Pros: Italian bees are highly productive foragers and once they get going for the summer they tend to maintain high numbers of worker bees. Their gentle demeanour makes them easy to work, and the light golden colour makes the queens quite easy to see. They don’t tend to propolize heavily, but this tendency can vary by colony and conditions. They also don’t swarm quite as much as many other races.
    Cons: Italians don’t forage as far as Carniolans. They don’t respond to external conditions as readily as some other races, and may try to keep more brood than they can raise with their existing food stores. Italians tend to orient by colour, so they can drift from hive to hive, leading to low populations in some hives and contributing to the spread of maladies.

    Bee types comparison.png

    • Thanks 2

  12. On 7/23/2017 at 8:37 AM, Rob Stockley said:

    No. I think the risks outweigh the returns. Apart from varroa tolerance (do we really want Africanised Bees?), what's wrong with our current honey bee stock?

    Hi Rob,  You are absolutely right. In July 2016 in Auckland BKs club there was a presentation held by Prof. Peter Dearden, from the Department of Biochemistry from Otago University saying that in NZ we have very diverse genes of different types of bees which is great for selecting many different features and bee habits. Also there are so many intermixed and crossed types that we don't miss almost any. Cheers

    • Like 1
    • Good Info 1

  13. 1 minute ago, Trevor Gillbanks said:

    I always treat swarms with Bayvarol for 48 hours.  Once the swarm has become established I then requeen the colony

    I guess Bayvarol is the fast acting drug. Is 48 h enough for varroa to fall off, though? I know that new swarm has no brood yet. Would it be harmful to leave the treatment in until first cells are capped? Thanks, Trev.

    • Like 1

  14. Have you noticed that Italian bees tend to swarm earlier (given the same time from making a swarm cell) than Carnica or Carniolan? Than of course, it comes to the genes of the queen. What I was advised is that once you collect the swarm you apply a varroa treatment straight away and if early in the season you change the queen with desired habits. 
    What are the thoughts of more experienced BKs?

  15. New Varroa Treatment VARROMED

    The 1st ever Bee Medicine with EU-wide approval: Ready-to-use for Spring/Autumn/Winter treatment

    VARROMED is a ready-to-use product based on a combination of natural components with the active ingredients oxalic acid and formic acid. This combination leads to increased efficacy against Varroa mites and to a better tolerance by the bees.




  16. Where is this wax to be found ? I've always thought it to be cream - opaque .

    What I meant is colourless - white, no colour.


    “Beeswax is always white when first secreted, regardless of the food consumed by the bees producing it. Wax usually takes on a yellow colour while in the hive as pigments from pollen are incorporated.” - Practical Beekeeping in New Zealand, Andrew Matheson and Murray Reid

  17. No, nectar and pollen are consumed by the bees in large quantities as the source of energy needed to secrete wax.

    The new wax is initially glass-clear and colourless, becoming opaque after mastication and adulteration with pollen by the hive worker bees. The wax becomes progressively more yellow or brown by incorporation of pollen oils and propolis. - During this process of mastication maybe there are some values added to the quality of beeswax depending on pollen. There must be something there. Why does beeswax change color than? What do you think?

  18. even if it provides no other discernible benefit, apart from a healthier profit margin over plain old fashioned beeswax

    Do you think there is no benefit to the bees from manuka beeswax? Do those anti-bacterial, anti-fungal properties of manuka contribute to the overall health of a brood comb, fighting viral or fungus diseases perhaps?

  19. The new wax is initially glass-clear and colourless, becoming opaque after mastication and adulteration with pollen by the hive worker bees. The wax becomes progressively more yellow or brown by incorporation of pollen oils and propolis.

    If there is pollen involved in beeswax, there must be a difference in the quality of beeswax. - Just a thought.

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