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Everything posted by CraBee

  1. CraBee

    February 2019 diary

    Saw two unique things today. One was Chalkbrood in a hive, which I wouldn't have seen since early Spring 2017. The Queen was sent on her way.... And upon opening another hive on the first frame I pulled out I saw a mite on a bee! So the mite was dispatched off the bee, and, I was immediately thinking I had a problem, but, not at all, I found only one mite in about 50-100 mashed up drone brood and the sugar shake was zero.
  2. CraBee

    Oxalic and glycerine

    Could it be that the synthetics kills the mites. And the acids fill the mites and the viruses? In any event I got around three sites today splitting and more splitting and moving them to mating sites, and sugar shaking hives and hardly saw a mite. All hives looking healthy apart from the occasional drone layer. I'll need to start thinking about when I pull the early Autumn strips, and then get the late Autumn ones in - mid April ish I'm thinking, maybe.....
  3. Ooops was looking for nzbees not this dating site. Sorry!
  4. Whoa I go wading into the levy topic and I'm taking hits already....
  5. "The Clash - Should I Stay or Should I Go" got no likes, not one. For those who didn't get it It was a parody of the levy vote. It was somewhat more interesting, I thought at least, than talking about the levy. Seems like the jokes on me.
  6. The Clash, "Should I Stay or Should I Go" - Legendary in circa 1989 https://www.whosampled.com/sample/6349/Big-Audio-Dynamite-The-Globe-The-Clash-Should-I-Stay-or-Should-I-Go/ Listen only on MAX volume. Some Lyrics: ."..... This indecision's bugging me If you don't want me, set me free Exactly whom I'm supposed to be Don't you know which clothes even fit me? Come on and let me know Should I cool it or should I blow? Split Should I stay or should I go now? Should I stay or should I go now? If I go there will be troubleAnd if I stay it will be double So ya gotta let me know Should I cool it or should I blow? ......"
  7. CraBee

    Oxalic and glycerine

    We know Ox/Gly nails the mites. But their use has not been subject to scientific trials as per the commercial strips. So I think we still need to have an open mind (and ongoing discussion) about what we are seeing When I posted this topic I wasn't making a call either way. In fact I'd have thought we should be seeing increased production on the back of better mite control over Summer. As for Spring build-up my Spring this year wasn't as strong s the previous Spring. I had staples in this most recent Spring and my own cardboard version the previous Spring. But the Spring build-up can be affected by a whole lot of things eg how old are the Queens 6mo or 18 months...etc so that it why I put it put there.
  8. CraBee

    Oxalic and glycerine

    No gloves for me. My helpers have worn gloves and the OA has worn through them...they have rubber gloves now. There are no real fumes from the OA/Gly staples. Neither me or my helpers have even had the hint of being affected by them this way. Formic acid...well that's another story. I guess different people could react differently to the Ox/Gly - perhaps thats the case here?
  9. I apologise if I relied on information that was in fact not correct.
  10. CraBee

    Agressive bees

    Some of the nastiest hives I have are when you leave one or two at a site and take the rest during a day time move. All those extra foraging bees flood into the hives that are left. It can make for some nasty bees. I don't think you're really a beekeeper until you've had to hoof it for the nearest scrub or into the vehicle with them hanging off you every which way they can. Even in the vehicle they're still at you. One sting at a time is always ok you can get the stinger out, but multiple stings you cant get to each stinger quick enough and they just keep pumping the bad stuff in.
  11. CraBee

    Oxalic and glycerine

    A few questions for those who have used OA/Gl: - There was some talk of OA/Gl affecting Spring build-up. Did anyone experience that? - How have others who have used OA/Gl found their honey production levels this year compared to other years?
  12. CraBee

    Manuka fail

    Out of interest what other chemical compounds did you think needed more serious consideration?
  13. CraBee

    Honey demand, facts not speculation

    I agree with @frazzledfozzle on this. There is no harm at all talking about what honey has or hasn't or will sell for. Pricing fixing is when parties then collude together to agree a price. That's not what is happening here.
  14. What is your position on the levy @Emissary ?
  15. CraBee

    Insects doing it hard

    A CNN story on worldwide "massive insect decline" https://edition.cnn.com/2019/02/11/health/insect-decline-study-intl/index.html
  16. CraBee

    Oxalic and glycerine

    Seems to be fine most of the time, I have been using them in mating nucs. I have noticed though on a few occasions a cell that has emerged, but then no sign of the VQ. I'm not certain, speculating really, but it may be that the new VQ is getting exposed to the OA if the staple is a little wet and this is effecting/killing her. I'm just ensuring/checking the staples are fully dry now.
  17. CraBee

    Agressive bees

    As the flow is likely to have ended you'll have a plenty of older, foraging bees with not a-lot to do, so they are more likely to be at home, and be grumpy. It's like a forced retirement...what to do. If you were to feed them a bit of syrup regularly this may take the edge off them. All my hives are way grumpier now than when the flow was on. Another scenario is that there have other bees from other hives trying to get into their hive or into boxes to get at any stored nectar or honey or syrup. I notice in particular the corners of the lids with bees looking for a way in, and so the bees in your hive are on alert to this robbing and go on the attack. So make sure the hive is bee-proof. Or they could be feeding on a plant of some sort that has made them testy. Another scenario is that the Queen has passed on, and they have a VQ in the hive, they usually become extra vigilant then. It doesn't sound like Queen genetics is causing it, if it has just started, but if it continues for too long getting a new Q may help.
  18. CraBee

    Oxalic and glycerine

    We've got fresh staples into the majority of hives over the past month or so as we're pulling honey. They staples are also going into all the nucs that are being made up. Mites levels are very low, but @philbee is right - don't leave it any later to get a treatment in because this is the start of the danger time. The staples in a reasonable hive seem to lose their tang (via the taste test) after a month or so, so we'll be looking at treating again. Beware late in Autumn too - this is where I got really smashed last year on some sites as I became a bit complacent. Re-invasion is very real and can be very nasty. I think that if the staples are a bit wet the solution can effect the bees negatively/kill bees, so dry them off if you need to, on the edge of the pail or the edge of the hive or on your bee-suit/overalls (yes I know I shouldn't but I do). As soon as you think you are on top of the mites give yourself a kick because its right at that time you need to be vigilant. Apologies for the lecture! Just passing on some hard earned lessons. I think @sailabee cracked it with the theory that younger bees can be effected by OA/Gly as their skeleton is so new/soft.
  19. My comments about the old beekeepers was "tongue in cheek" :-))
  20. Well the halving of the multi-floral honey price in the last two years doesn't excite me. Nor do all the hives around the place. My view is that all the old beekeepers, who have had a good run, now need to retire as that would help solve the over-stocking problem. That would excite me. I wasn't excited to have 206mm of rain in December in Auckland, right when the target crops were flowering. The December before was 8mm...so so dry. Global warming doesn't excite me. I'd get excited if I could be persuaded that APINZ will achieve positive things for the industry. I'm yet to be excited there...
  21. CraBee

    Commodity Levy - Voting Now Open

    Further to the above, and trying to keep some balance, I like the look of the Board. There is a wide industry representation on it. That is one tick I would give for the levy. The below is taken from the APINZ website. Karin Kos Chief Executive Karin Kos was appointed as Chief Executive in late-November 2016. Karin has a strong background in business communications going back 20 years, covering a variety of roles including senior communications and marketing positions for corporate, government and primary sector organisations. She brings significant primary sector experience to this role, having worked at Seafood New Zealand as its communications manager, and at the New Zealand Wool Board, earlier in her career. In both these roles Karin played a strong advocacy role, promoting these sectors on behalf of their members. OK so this is where it gets back to APINZ being the body that puts the case for the beekeeping industry, that's all fine. But the problem is this - it is my view that the "beekeeping industry" is going to be viewed as the same thing as "the big corporate manuka producers" and that it will be their interests that are advanced - not us pleebs who are in fact the majority of the industry. And that is why it would be sensible to get reassurance from someone like Karin Kos that she and her team actually understand the smaller beekeepers perspective and issues. Or it gets a No vote.
  22. CraBee

    Commodity Levy - Voting Now Open

    When I signed up for this site I was on a mobile phone and I was allocated crabee being the first part of my first name and the first part of my surname. Quite a few people on here know my name, but in any event what is not in dispute is that it is the best name in beekeeping although @kaihoka pushes me close ? Re the levy, we're being asked to fund / pay for APINZ to operate, so it is implicit on APINZ to front up and answer questions and let us build confidence in them. I agree @denniscrowley has done some of that but the Board does not run an entity, the Board is there for governance, the executive run it, so it would be helpful if the executive - like Karin Kos? is it fronted up also. And if the executive don't front then we get to form our own conclusions......
  23. CraBee

    February 2019 diary

    I'd pull the bees out, give the guy a wave, and not go back. You don't need to be dealing with someone who didn't even have the common decency to let you know about the spraying, and then couldn't give a toss if your bees were affected by it. Live is too short for that....
  24. CraBee

    Are you a member of APINZ?

    Despite my previous stirring I'm still open minded about this....even though the levy is being struck on a flawed basis (multi/manuka being the same).......BUT Why do we have a situation where your vote count equates to the number of hives you have? How did that decision get arrived at? And why is it that that works to the advantage of the big few? Our most important form of voting in NZ would have to be for Parliament, and that is one person one vote. If you've got an IQ 50 points higher than mine (quite likely I'd venture to say), or $10m in the bank, none of that matters, one person, one vote. Under this approach the larger operators take control. Why is it that one large operator with say 10,000 hives is as important or has the same say as ten operator's with 1,000 hives each? That's actually not right.....IMO.