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Everything posted by jamesc

  1. We used to have everything contract extracted. It seemed easy, but the reality was it was extra time transporting boxes there and back, and then we had to wait in line for our turn .... So we put our own plant in. It started with a hot top and hand knife and two four frame extractors that gravity fed into a sump tank in the floor of the big shed where we stored boxes and trucks.. The honey was then pumped into drums. The new regs came in and we needed a dedicated room, and the four frame painted extractors went to the museum in the roof. We bought
  2. Pattie land ....? Nothing wrong with partnerships , you just gotta make sure you spot all the chasms and pits before you fall into them .... and have an exit strategy with fire power from a top lawyer. Become the hunter, rather than the hunted.
  3. Well ... we need to check the confidence in the probability.... because once again, tonight we are trying to keep warm by a fire running on wet wood.... and I am contemplating buying more sugar.
  4. I can never understand those NIWA predictions ..... the probability that it will or it won't be warmer or wetter .... Right now in our gully we are colder and wetter than normal .... but that might well change when we will become warmer and dryer than normal. Blueskies tells us to check back to our diaries for 2011 and 2018. They were both good honey years.
  5. Tough Call .... someone once said you can never chase a flow. I've gone for the fifty-fifty split ...... clovers/kamahi looking good, Manuka blooms there but needs some consistent heat, and the Dew .... is always a mystery!
  6. Brrrrrr .... it’s almost snowing again. The misso’s best mate tells me this is the summer to expect in Canterbury. South Easterly airflow.... Go west young men. Coming home this morning I passed a trailer on the side of the road.... loaded with bees.... no tractor unit on the front and the shotgun rider dressed in puffa jacket looking stressed. Busted bearings. Flat tyres.... The joys of The Great Migration. My apologies for not stopping ....
  7. It gave me a chuckle several weeks ago..... Stuff news..... ‘ police close down vietnamese condom recycling operation.’ True story.... apparantly.
  8. Dear Diary last night it snowed in the hills and the ice warning indicator came on in the truck. 2c at 4.30 am ..... that and the pounding hail should slow the bud?
  9. I've got one yard to resuscitate. It's struggled all spring. The Kowhai blossom got hit by the frost. The Matagouri got hit by the rain ..... and the syrup went sour. Resucitation yard will get evened up again. I don't like yards that have strong and weak hives, so we take from the strong and give to the weak and end up with an average and then plonk them somewhere with a later flow. Queen less hives get brooded up with four or five frames of sealed brood ..... and marked for interest's sake to observe how nature takes its course with raising their own queen. Af
  10. For sure ..... perfect for Manuka and wax moth ..... I got a pallet of plastic frames which I'm wondering what to do with . And of course NZ Beeswax do a great job at supplying ready to go wood'n'wax frames. We don't even contemplate building and wiring our own frames anymore.
  11. I don't like wearing gloves. Having said that, I did at the beginning of the week when putting shop towels out laced with O/A. They were rubber chemical gloves and stank. I made the comment to the Main man that it must be a very similar sensation to wearing a second hand Vietnames condom.
  12. I hived a swarm last weekend in a nuc box. I went back this morning to pick it up. The nuc was empty. I have noticed that there is no hard and fast rule with swarms . Sometimes virgins, sometimes old queens .... how do I know ... mainly because we run our bees lean and mean in the spring and I pick up my neighbours swarms, and he marks them ?. The main thing with swarms is that they are something for nothing , and if convenient, I'm happy to shake them into a box and hope for better odds than lotto.
  13. Aah Bro ... I hate plastic with a passion. Imagine.... we pulled nearly five hundred honey boxes out of the system during the winter as part of a clean up from anAFB outbreak with a neighbour two years ago. we were’nt too sure of the status of the boxes .... so we washed all the wax out of the frames and then put them through the parrafin wax bath. The frames came out with wires intact ready for new foundation. It’s been labour intensive.... which is acceptable in the present environment. Imagine what we would have to do with all the plastic. Plastic is for the l
  14. Not sure we need another big year .... I still got the last big Rata year sitting in the shed
  15. But anyway... while the team was doing yhe hard yards... I was out galivanting around... checking access and gates. This one iss a classic.
  16. Big day in the shed.... all hands on getting the recycled frames re waxed and ready to go out again. Don’t ya just love recycling.
  17. Last night I was talking to my mate over in Canada. Sold his crop of Canola honey to the Co-op for $6.21/kg.. NZD. So when a local packer offers me $3.00/kg for clover with no Terramycin I think that's a bit rude .... Just saying !
  18. Apathy, shrivelled cojones, fear, mental block ....... its not for trying that honey is slow to move .... we can move certain honeys, albeit at a dismal price . The way I see it is that there is no structure within the industry , there is no Big picture business plan that shows the way to the end point of sale for producers and gives confidence to new producers wanting to step up and grasp the hive tool and smoker and make a go of it. Its every man for himself. If you look at sheep, beef, venison, milk there is a structure of production and processing and a definite path
  19. Home sweet home ..... We chucked on over 600 boxes in the last day and a half, and most hives needed a couple more. But I'm rationed on both boxes and money to buy more, so it is what it is. And as we tootled home, and stopped for a pie and iced coffee a smiling lady walked past me out of the gas station. It was one of those chance encounters , where you briefly meet and smile .... She had seen the branding on the truck ...... and with the smile came the comment 'Nice branding' .... 'Yeah' I said, and we were gone. Us heading home with a tail wind, and she in her
  20. Uuh huh... I was gonna send you another pic of the topless babe in the bar to tonight, but the phone was flat. But here’s the deal. I enjoy what I do. Throwing boxes on in the rain, dreaming of the potential sleeping innthe truck If we all had no hope and curled up in a hole in the groundcand played possum... I’ll gairantee nothing would happen.... I don’t mind sharing. it’s been a #### few years and in reality we should have pushed all the bees into the big hole and poured diesel on them last year.... But then where u gonna get yer buzz
  21. Aah ... we are supering up in anticipation of something .... I’m tooo dumb to do anything else.
  22. Funny you should say that Frazz. I was just thinking the same over the weekend ..... that no-one has been gripping about low honey prices or lack of sales and income ..... and concluded that we must all just be trucking on . My new found marketing man can sell clover and honey dew for about $4.50/kg ..... but his buyers no nothing about Kamahi. We have looked at all of @frazzledfozzle scenarios, and are still hoping for a miracle. Our two Lazarus heifers that had pinched nerves at calving and have been down for a month finally got up and walked this weekend ..... so mira
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