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About Beehaving

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  1. Awaiting the next exciting installment, but nothing for 4 days now. Is this the end of the road for this thread? Did it just turn to sh#t? Maybe everyone is concentrating on more cathartic issues with the Spring build up, bees flat out, new queens, more O/A staples required or do I do a quick synthetic treatment before the flow starts?
  2. Nikki has highlighted part of what seems to me to be very pertinent, there have been several further posts to support this and also a post that questioned the type of glycerine used. We have learned a lot about the effect of cold and damp houses on the health of the humans that live in them, why should bees be any different? Glycerine by it's nature attracts moisture. A strong ventilated hive produces it's own heat sufficient to keep O/A staples dry, we have seen staples ooze when not in the brood cluster when they are able to absorb moisture, and that cannot be good for hive health. I have always tried to position hives for best winter and least summer sun, least wind and least frost and cold and as a hobbyist I have more flexibility than most. I know that commercial practicality comes into it and pallets of hives often get left very exposed and where the truck can best pick them up, and mostly your good strong hives can survive this and the virus loads that may be associated. Tough little critters these bees. But we are seeing failures, and I think that the dampness that the glycerine attracts has a big part to play when combined with poor nutrition and exposed hive siting.
  3. Got my impressive results by putting strips in the middle of the brood, and shifting with the brood movement. Found that brood was right up to each side of the (chewed) strips which didn't seem to worry them too much.
  4. My tuppence worth as a 2 hive hobbyist. Wintered as single full depth boxes. Washed 98/225 (cause I couldn't count all the varroa in the jar and had to tip out and sort when I saw the high numbers) in April after honey off and no treatments since Apivar in Spring. Put in o/a staples that some of the hobby club members made up and left unchanged since, but moved to follow brood. No brood break in both these hives and remained strong. Just had the club up for a meeting and did another wash on both hives with a zero count in both. Staples pretty much gone now and what is left is not tangy any more. I'm a convert and will replace staples for the Spring build up. I'm no expert but agree that other factors other than the varroa alone must be at play. I will also say that in my pre-varroa days there were never the health problems we now see.
  5. I've just joined the staples brigade. Been following this thread for a while and talking to others in the local bee club who are converts. Only two strong 2 FD brood hives that have had Apivar and Bayvarol treatments for years. I take honey off late in the season so my autumn treatments start late. Put strips in 3 per box. Washed 98/225 pre treatment (but no obvious signs of DWV or other problems) so will definitely look for improvement and Nikki's experience here has given me cause for hope. When should I do my next wash to check? I have one Hive doctor base and one SS mesh floor. There is seepage from the HDoctor base, so thinking staples have absorbed water and are dripping, and it's not really cold here yet. Thoughts/recommended actions?
  6. That was definitely an eek I heard John. Eke is used (not necessarily with beehives) as in 'eke it out' aka 'stretch it out'. Makes sense.
  7. Using the car overdoes it a bit! I leave them corrugated, put a 2x2 front and back so it holds the polystyrene in place and locks onto the top box and fold the side corrugations down and nail onto the wood. A few roof screws from the top as well. Stick it out front and back, just like a shed roof. Rock is optional, but handy to keep one there and use as a hammer to get those glued up boxes apart.
  8. My hives never have many dead bees out in front. There are a few cunning old blackbirds that visit regularly for a feed!
  9. No he is in Australia. I am sure the process would be much the same in NZ, I imagine your doctor would refer you to an Immunology Clinic.
  10. My brother in law had an anaphylactic reaction several years ago and is now happily back hobby beekeeping after desensitisation. It was a long process, he was cautious working the bees again for a while and carried an epipen, but hasn't needed it and the desensitisation seems to have worked really well for him.
  11. Back to the topic. This email of today seems a bit unfair. The subject line referred to an email received from the management agency on 19 March. I didn't get that, last one was on the 11 March.
  12. Possibly a flat tyre or something? Had to dump the load, rush into town to fix and may have got picked up again relatively quickly? Messy stacking. Not many boxes have numbers aye.
  13. I have quite a few lookalikes to the picture in my hives as well. Mine are Carni/Italian mongrel hives (not purebred mated queens) and I just assumed this was a throwback of some description. Next time I go through the hives I will try and get some good photos.
  14. Heard stories that those big grain augers can cause pretty large explosions from the static electricity firing up the dust if not adequately earthed. Must try the cornflour trick for the grandies one day.
  15. I have always used ply crownboards under the tin. Wood is a great insulator and I have not experienced condensation issues. Better still is to site hives with morning sun but in the shade midday on. A little sun gets the girls up and active early in the day, and with our 30+ degree days recently there was not much bearding because of the shade under the trees. Granted we do not get the humidity here that others may suffer from.
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