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Christi An

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Christi An last won the day on June 4 2018

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About Christi An

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    Pupa

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  • Beekeeping Experience
    Hobby Beekeeper

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    Gisborne

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  1. i honestly dont think the bottom board is the problem here...
  2. as always it depends on a lot of circumstances if you overwinter on 2 or even 3 boxes the distance to the top insulation will likely be too big to make a difference. all the heat would just exit the hive through the uninsulated side walls. In this particular case insulation needs to be closer to the source of heat to work. that said it is proven that bees in styrofoam boxes consume less stores over winter. So generally speaking it will be beneficial. Also in certain side by side setups bees often tend to cluster towards the side next to the other hive. Thats why some beekeepers like to overwinter 2 weaker nucs in one box separated by a thin divider board. but again for a strong hive thats not all that relevant. Bees are very resilient and adaptive and thus almost any setup will work for them. the differences often are not that distinctive which makes it very hard to figure out whats best for them. Although it is clear that a standard langstroth box is very different to the "ideal" feral colony setup figured out by tom seeley. also circumstances like temperature and humidity can and will be very different from one apiary to another (especially if you consider whole of nz). so whats good for one beekeeper might not be ideal for another. that said i think anywere in nz youll be able to overwinter an otherwise healthy hive regardless of insulation or bottom board setup. the reason for me to have meshed bottom boards is the use of a sticky board and the fact that i can keep the hive entrances small regardless of the outside temperature (heat)
  3. my gut feeling sais he means formic acid
  4. go ahead. but definately insulate your top cover/hive mat ! at least 30 mm styrofoam
  5. varroa mites usually hide inside capped brood (most of them) or underneath a bees abdomen. If you see the occasional mite on top of a bee it usually just means that there are way too many of them. theres no way they would be able to just rub the mites off a number of times big enough to make any difference. so in short: no it wont work
  6. assuming that those 100 mites (per 300 bees) indeed come from reinvasion you MUST make sure they dont reach the brood (especially around this time of the year where the longer living winter bees are reared) so definately treat again (the idea to use another substance sounds like a good idea just in case)
  7. great chance to make them nearly varroa free (does not mean they will remain free of varroa once heavily infested hives in the vicinity start dying) with just 1 treatment of oa.
  8. it depends how you melt it. The Pupaes skins will soak up a lot of wax if you melt it "dry". Steam and hot water will soak the skins and thus reduce the amount of wax wasted.
  9. robbing is not the cause of the weak hive, the hive is being robbed because its weak. make sure to find the cause the brood on the picture looks diseased. (looks like mites but might be not). feeding of sugar only encourages the robbing. close the entrance to one beespace and find the reason.
  10. the fact that the standard outer lids you get here are so unsuitable also gives me grief. im used to conical lids with about 2cm per side overhang and closed outer edges. you happen to know of any source for something like that?
  11. I can confirm what Manfred said. successfully overwintered hives in Southern Germany with temperatures up to -20 Degrees during night for several weeks. Not a single hive lost. Bottom Boards were fully open with SS mesh. practically eliminates condensation. While the NZ Italians might prefer a bit warmer temperatures than the buckfast and carniolans i had back there i think theyll be fine whereever you place them if they have an adequate strength going into winter. Some northern european Beekeepers seem to have italian breeds as well. i have two main reasons for meshed bottom boards, the first one having not to worry about ventilation especially in the summer when entrances are reduced the second being able to use a sticky board (although i dont make it sticky) to very quickly be able to check mite levels. An open bottom board might even be beneficial if it would make the bees stop rearing brood for some time which would enable you to do a very effective treatment against the mites. I however dont know if that would actually be the case or not If you want to add insulation a VERY good place to put insulation is under the outer lid. During Summer (heat) and witer (cold)
  12. adding any form of acid to sugar water is both bad for the bees and unneccesary: https://honeybeesuite.com/hydroxymethylfurfural-in-sugar-syrup/ and even more interesting: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=https://www.apimondia.com/congresses/2013/Biology/Plenary-Session/Impact%20Of%20Different%20Feed%20On%20Intestine%20Health%20Of%20Honey%20Bees%20-%20Goran%20Mirjanic.pdf&ved=2ahUKEwiTsIbz4qXhAhUO63MBHanUDgEQFjAQegQICBAB&usg=AOvVaw1NnNzjw-W2sXwrJvDgkQbR
  13. sorry. you mentioned 4.9 cell beekeepers. is there any correlation between cell size and AFB? i always thought they only claim/pretend to not have to treat for varroa - rumor has it that some of them are very good customers of the package bee industry (again not talking about nz here) No i havent. Also dont see why that would be necessary from a disease elimination point of view.
  14. yes i was indeed talking about a particular case in germany this winter. sorry this wasnt clear.
  15. there indeed have been cases where whole apiaries (with clinically healthy and spore free hives) were ordered to be burned by over zealous officials with little to no understanding of bees and AFB
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