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Everything posted by CraBee

  1. One of the most important things that beekeeping has going for it and an argument is that farming is the cornerstone of the economy and that the bees provide a significant public benefit through pollination. The benefit provided is hard to quantify but likely to be very substantial. I'm not just talking about the fruit trees in someone's back yard, but the clover and crops through-out the country. They're all freeloaders! 🙂
  2. I read up about pseudoscorpions at one stage and my conclusion was that there was little or no chance of any control method using them on varroa working. I can't quite remember why that was now as it was some time back.
  3. Agree 1000%. There was a NZ government grant for $400,000 made to a party to research psuedo-scorpions and their potential to control varroa. $400,000. That's a lot of hard work for beekeepers on something that had little or no prospect of achieving anything. It is little wonder we are sceptical. And also what happens if the researchers get onto anything good they commercialise it for the their own benefit, while others have funded the rubbish research.
  4. I think the Democrats know well why he is POTUS, lots of good ole boys from the boondocks with a primary school education voted for him.
  5. Same here, there is usually a use for a Queen on the way out, get a nuc started with her, then give her the chop a bit later and put a cell in for example.
  6. Dave what you can see are play cups, the bees create these when they are beginning to think about swarming. If they are empty, all good, but you definitely need another box on top or they are likely to swarm. With the play cups the next step is the bees will begin to grease up the bottom of the cup, then the Queen will lay in it, and the egg will hatch into a larvae and then the cell will be capped. With my bees a capped cell is usually all it takes for them to swarm... This is one of the reasons I prefer plastic frames...
  7. Maybe they found the maple syrup and strawberries...
  8. I had the same a couple of years back, sent mats off to MH and got back (eventually) a payment for propolis - which seemed low - and my wax. Except I know for a fact that I had a-lot more wax than what I received back when the mats were sent away. No confidence left in them and no trust. The mats make good bottom boards if I run out and don't have any on site...
  9. I wasn't involved back then, but is it your experience that the hives / bees were considerably healthier and more productive back then?
  10. I got to thinking about leaving honey on the hives some more today. If there is honey on the hives come harvest time and it is harvested then there are costs associated with that - harvesting costs, extracting, storage, and then replacing honey taken with syrup. Costs are then being incurred when many bk's may not want to (or be able to) meet more costs. There is also an opportunity cost involved in the bk's time, time that could possibly be spent on more productive things. eg marketing, new sites etc. But anyway if theoretically bush / multi could even sell for $5/kg take the costs off and there might be a couple of $/kg left - costs will vary depending upon how you are set-up. Ultimately you're going to have more honey in drums that is adding to industry supply / stock-pile of honey at a time when the existing honey is not even selling....and it seems to me that is not going to change for a number of years.....and even when you do get to sell it it is older honey with a higher HMF..... Or another option is to target crops that can actually sell, take any easy honey / major excess of bush/multi/honey dew honey off, but leave the rest of the honey for the bees - thereby keeping them healthy and strong and ready for other opportunities. That's the way I see it at least.
  11. One thing that @bjc referred to was a build up of OA in the hive (in wax). I guess @philbee that you're / we're not all that sure what the effect of that is - apart from the fact you've got hives that have been dosed with OA/Gl for 3 ish years and there is no obvious negative effect?
  12. That's really rank. If I'm selling a nuc to a new bk I make sure that first nuc is an extra good one....
  13. If the honey price for normal honey / bush / multi-floral has not recovered (and I don't expect it to) and so is still less than $5/kg I will leave it on the hives this season. That leaves manuka and pohutukawa.....
  14. I should add to my comment. Four weeks absolute minimum. They can last way longer.
  15. My experience is they last about four weeks when they are in the middle of a busy brood nest with heaps of bee traffic. The best way I know to tell what life they have left in them is to pull them out and give them the taste test. It is soon apparent if there is oxalic left in the staple. It's great to hear your experience so far is that that they are dealing to the mites 🙂
  16. I'm interested in how you go about dehydrating it, if you can say?
  17. I've not lost one yet this season, stopped two today each hive with capped cells and very lazy bees, I got lucky.
  18. Prior to least season's harvesting I asked our extractor if they could put frames back into the same box they came from. "No" was the answer, but it would have been easy enough to do, all they'd need to do is stack the frames in order in the extractor, mark the first frame, and then frames back into boxes 1, 2 and 3. This was one of a bunch of reasons why we've ended up deciding to extract and process it ourselves this coming season. More control over the process.
  19. Some areas within the Auckland region have been flowering since August, and have probably peaked now and starting to wane. Whereas in other area's manuka is just starting to bud up, so it is very dependent on microclimates in each area, manuka type, location and weather.
  20. Do you work in a government or related role?
  21. Or just look at the $2,700 per pot sale as a redistribution of wealth from the gentry to us the plebeian beekeepers.
  22. I agree. Not so long ago on here there were complaints about honey companies going in and undercutting their competitors, and now when we have a honey company seeking to maximise their return, more complaints. Also the same issue with Comvita buying in propolis from overseas, not so long ago on here there was a discussion about buying refractometers from China, and how low the cost was, and people jumped at it..
  23. Welcome to my world 😞 Its enough to make me want to move to the Mainland.
  24. I think we are having a shocking Spring weather wise. It has been cold and the wind has been steady and strong, hail yesterday. How do you see it @Alastair ?
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