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Everything posted by mischief

  1. You'll probably have found by now that they like SC in the brood nest but NOT for the honey frames. Mine frames have the shoulders shaved down a la MB and they do not like these for honey.
  2. I just discovered that what I thought the bees were on wasnt a 7 finger but Japanese Aralia. My bumbles seem to have done a runner. Hope they turn up to open up the Pineapple Sage flowers this year.
  3. I havent been able to check out whats happening with the magnetosphere for a while and wondered if it had taken a huge hit from the sun....or something. Someone suggested that maybe a late swarm had lost its queen....not likely. Not either of mine anyway. They seemed agitated but not aggressive,(just loud) although my dog didnt think so and spent most of his time outside hiding under my sage bush. We've had plenty of full moons..... I wondered if their ability to navigate had been disrupted and that they had latched onto a very visiable local landmark, but that doesnt explain why they all disappearred when the sun went down. If that was the case, I should have found clusters all over the place early the next morning. I did wonder about 5G, but havent dared go for a walk just to see if anything odd has appeared in the neighbourhood....and that doesnt explain how others noticed bees being weird in the South Island on the same day.
  4. Just saw this and went back through my diary.....guess what? Bees behaving weirdly for two days, starting the same day. They started flying in my porch quite loudly early afternoon, back and forth along the walls. Those that did go inside went straight to the windows to get out again. By 2.30 they were doing the same thing along the south side of the house- same side the porch opens out to, and also flying following the eaves of the gables. 3pm There were even more and now in the courtyard randomly, loudly, flying around as well as across that side of the house. 3.30, now in the parking area- bees everywhere. I checked my hives and didnt see anything different but closed them down just in case. Next day, they were back by mid morning and didnt leave til late afternoon. Next day- none, back to normal.
  5. My Japanese wind anenomes are out, bees just loving their yellow pollen
  6. Is there some reason you guys cannot sell straight to the consumer?
  7. My 'True Greek' Oregano is getting loads of visitors from mid morning to early evening, even though its in partial shade and not full sun.
  8. I had to move my hive from one corner of my back yard to the other far corner- about 30 m away. My hive is a long hive up on a stand, so I needed help. The night before, I closed off the entrance. I had to go to work and was back by mid afternoon, A neighbour helped me move it. Interestingly, there were at least a dozen bees outside, feeding nectar through the screen, so they Dont always go home every night. After we moved it, what i did was put alot of thin branches across the entrance as well as cover the whole thing with shade clothe to make it as difficult as possible for them to get out- so they would KNOW things had changed and would re-orientate. Entrance was closed down to the smallest i could do. I left it that way for about a week, maybe a bit more then removed the shade clothe leaving the branches and twigs. When I checked the bait box I had placed at the original spot the first morning after the move (5am before work), there were only a handful of bees in it. This got put directly under the hive. I checked the original spot as well- with a torch cos it was still dark and there were a few small clusters of bees on the concrete. The next few days, still some bees went back and in the evening there would be a billow of bees circling around til they all found the hive and went to their new home.. They were really loud while this was going on. Noisy!!! Each day there would be less and less at the old site. They always found there way back to the hive with none there in the early morning, except for the first day. So, you can move a hive even if it is close by. You just have to make sure they have to work at getting out and have to re-orientate on the entrance. They did really well over the rest of summer and over wintered really well. This spring they got split for the first time and both hives are doing well. Good luck with your move.
  9. Love the recycling!! My butternuts have only just got planted out. Not too worried about that cos I really like them over winter rather than summer.
  10. Are you sure they havent just been foraging on salvias. I have a number of plants and was a bit worried at seeing shiney bees til I watched them push their way into the flower.
  11. Paul Stamets book- Mycelium Running, is really interesting. So is Michael Phillips- Mycorrhizal Planet. I think I like that one better. BookdepositoryUK is my fav on line book store. I found a source of NZ Native Oyster mushrooms that I am experimenting with. Almost got the wooden dowels of both strains ready to plug into some cabbage tree trunks. now I wait impatiently for the supplier to get his NZ Shiitake mushies ready for sale.
  12. Mine just started flowering today these are a bright yellow compared to the others which are more a gold colour. Not much into hunting but its almost time for me to go fishing.
  13. November, but I do have two tubers that have nice stems and leaves on them right now
  14. There are a few mature Kowhai just down the road from me which are already in full bloom. I always thought these started flowering in November. My two young trees plus another I know of, have yet to do so. So.....do I plant my Kumara now or not? Traditionally, you do this when they start flowering.....just seems way to early.
  15. I inspected the hive today. That went well and I was happy with what I saw. When I changed the hive around, I made sure there was a follower board on the brood side so I could just go in and inspect that area. I didnt quite have it far enough into the hive, but after the second frame, managed to not roll the bees.
  16. I saw the saw thing last summer- the brood nest covered 15 frames with no brood anywhere else. I was too sure if that was because I had the fat honey comb next to the brood nest with alot of the other honey comb fattened up to some degree. I prefer not to use a QE. They seemed to have done okay with just the normal deep frames, tending to have a whole frame or two just for pollen rather than underneath the brood. There problem so far has been me, but they are patient teachers. The new hive is a Jumbo deep so it will be interesting to compare them. I'm also using the SC plastic frames, but have cut all the edges off some of these to use as 'foundation insert'. So far I've got 4 frames ready with waxed 'inserts' underneath a starter strip that is sewn in place with cotton thread. I figure that way, they will have a honey dome over, can make the holes they like so much along the top and upper sides. I'm out of wax so I may need to put empties in between with just the starter strip and hope for the best. To extract, when they get to that point, I'm hoping to be able to cut the lower portion out, pop it on couple of cake racks tied together with cable ties, de-cap, pop it in the extractor and then slide it back into the frame. I dont need all the honey
  17. I'm having a hard time getting in at the moment, just as I get ready to the weather turns again. Not too sure about supering, I got the long hive cos my back wont let me do heavy lifting.
  18. I had to move my hive around to get it ready for opening up the main entrance again for the new season. The bees had a a hard time figuring out things were which gave me time to count what was going in. One had red pollen which I thought odd seeing as flax isnt flowering yet- might be dead nettle ...2 out of 3 had either yellow or orange pollen. I wound up opening up the main entrance ahead of schedule to try to lessen the traffic jam. Almost got hive # 2 ready- just got the roof to sort out. This one is for a Beequip Jumbo deep sized frame. My main problem right now is that my 32 frame long hive is already working on 20 frames and its not even a week into spring...no way to super this so I need to split it soon.
  19. My Pink Manuka is flowering too, but only on the sun side
  20. Contrary to what seems to be the norm, my mite count this year has been worryingly low, all year. The Ad- "Dont trust 'em boss!", has been at the back of my mind for most of the year. After yet another OAV, mite count after 24hours is...again, 2.....I check every day and clear the boards after every four days, when I do it all over again. After almost losing my hive last spring, I have been vigilent to the point of paranoia, recognising that organic treatments my need to be done more frequently to stay on top of things. I would like to say it is because I have partially regressed my hive down to small cell, but they only have 5 shaved down frames out of 15 in the brood area, so that doesnt work. As I said somewhere earlier- they have been a puzzle all year. I simply watch and learn.
  21. I started out with wooden and foundation starter strips. When I finally managed to get plastic frames (Small cell so imported, meaning unwaxed), I applied what I thought was a good amount but they didnt build it out very well. Just the middle bit. It was only when I literally finger-painted the wax, heavily (from honey plus brood comb) they did build it out full. So now its heavier the better.
  22. Interesting. I been seeing the same thing and worried about this. Got Dan to come over to do a pre winter inspection to make sure everything was okay and it appears to be. You had them moving to the feeder to die, I found them going to the bucket i had started collecting dead bees in, meaning to get them tested.... but accidentally left them outside over night and it rained, so that put paid to that idea.
  23. I am interested in hearing how they get on over winter and spring. Hope you let us know.
  24. Smaller hive mats and a follower board makes it a little more manageable. That way you should only have to move them once. Having said that, I havent been able to get this part right sometimes and have to move them all back over too. Smaller mats has meant there is only the frames I'm working with that are exposed, having to deal with such a huge cloud would be too intimidating for me. I like your roof, I was going to use a bit of metal flashing but your way also gives both an escape point for bees over the inner cover as well as ventilating the roof space. I have ceiling insulation sitting on the inner mats, year round. I put it back on later in the day after the bees have vacated the roof space. hehe, subscribed and liked.
  25. I've been crush and straining or just cutting it into chunks which then go either into big jar or if its a really nice white comb into a takeaway container. I dont mind eating the odd bit of wax
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