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Alastair last won the day on June 25

Alastair had the most liked content!

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About Alastair

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    Field Bee


  • DECA Holder
  • Beekeeping Experience
    Semi Commercial


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  1. Certainly a big population for middle of winter! They are even building queen cells.
  2. I'm starting to feel better and better about not bothering to go. 😉
  3. . Yes nothing wrong with a competent beekeeper aquiring such gear, running it in quarantine, and dealing with any issues that may arise. Probably a better option than it going to a newby. But there is little doubt there will be many advertisements like the above cropping up. Red flags in this ad were - hives all dead, beekeeper not registered, frames all scraped clean, guy admitted not having time to run them, some stuff looked burned, mishmash of gear, some of it such as the needed number of bottom boards not there (could have been burned). Overall feel of the ad was the guy was totally incompetent at bees and probably got no idea if diseased or not, that with the part burned gear were the two major issues. About all that can be done is we are all vigilant, and immediately bring such ads or activities to the public attention. Congratulations Trade Me, they certainly acted fast once this was brought to their attention. My concern is this guy still has the gear, and will try to unload it in some other way. And while I was on TM i browsed a few of the other ads, reading between the lines it looks like there are a few sad stories out there.
  4. I think they have already been left to die and be robbed in his back yard. By the newness of the inked on rego number which must be the previous owner, doesn't look like he has had them long. One lid looks like it has been in a fire. He offers to let a purchaser check for AFB, but all frames have been scraped clean so that is obviously not possible. In my view this is high risk.
  5. Thanks All. Hoping someone will know the guy, if we can ID i will report him to the management agency. Just noticed the lid on the right of the pic shows signs of having been in a fire.
  6. Thanks Yesbut Figured it out, and reported to Trade Me. Anyone know who this guy is because this should also be reported to the management agency.
  7. This ad for a bunch of dead hives, from a guy who said "I didn't get around to registering". I know TM have agreed to only allow bee sales from registered beekeepers, but i cannot figure out how to report the ad to them how is it done? https://www.trademe.co.nz/business-farming-industry/farming-forestry/beekeeping/auction-2192476213.htm?fbclid=IwAR2V8t4MT5KEPZldtNMUncc1CxF90oa6q0P-z0pMqPGnp4rhRK5eR8yR1CM
  8. This was pretty funny 😄 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LONT1oboJrs
  9. I have already seen some of that in action so can answer at least to some extent. Beekeepers who do not file their paperwork to demonstrate that their hives have been checked by a DECA holder are sent reminder notices. Eventually if there is no response, an AP2 is sent to do the check, and the cost of that is billed to the beekeeper. Some will see this as unfair, because there are 2 kinds of non compliant beekeepers. There are those who just don't like "big brother" and do not file paperwork as a matter of principle. The other type are those who just made an innocent mistake. However the purpose of the current regime is to get away from the situation of years ago, when beekeepers were just trusted to check their hives for AFB, some beekeepers had limited experience, could not recognise the disease, and not much was done about that. So now, the idea is to have people trained (become DECA holders), and that people who are untrained have their hives checked by someone who is. IE, every hive in NZ is checked by a trained person at least one time each year. So people who do not furnish the paperwork to show that has been done, now have it done for them, at their expense. In my view, the goal of eradicating AFB has got no show, unless the above is enforced, at a minimum. So although I sympathise with people who just forgot to file paperwork, i am in support of the general idea, it HAS to happen.
  10. If it's queenless, then it's all over for that hive. There are insufficient drones at this time of year for a new queen to get mated, so no point trying to get them to make a new queen, it is just wasting resources from the good hive. And you are right about learning, beekeeping is complex to learn and we all have to deal with these issues to get experience. Best option, take good care of your good hive, and once it has built up a good population in spring, take a split from it then to re populate the other hive, plus taking the split then will help it not to swarm.
  11. Just another opinion, personally i would not combine. Couple of reasons, firstly, with proper care the smaller hive can still survive the winter, it may need moving a few Km's to a buddies house to get it away from the wasps, after a month or two it could be brought back. But the main reason, if the hive is weak there could be a reason for that as in some type of infection. If that is the case, you don't want to dump it into the good hive. Me, I never dump struggling hives into good ones. If anything, I would add some brood and bees from a good hive to a small one that needs it, but not the other way around. However, that's just one opinion of many, so go with whatever works. Just some encouragement, a friend asked me to look at their hive as it was being attacked by wasps. Went there, took the lid off, and immediately a horde of wasps flew out. There were 100 or 200 bees left, scattered around, and the queen running around by herself. So i took the hive home and left it overnight so the bees could find each other and cluster. Also took a 1 kilo package of bees from another hive and left them queenless overnight. Next day sugar watered them and dumped them in. Had a look a week later and queen still alive, eggs being layed, bees cleaning out dead brood, things moving the right direction. Suspected possible varroa problem so put strips in. This hive will be ready to give back to the owner once brood starts hatching, so even the hopeless looking cases can be done.
  12. Thanks that's handy. I only use extra virgin NZ olive oil, after reading about nearly 50% of olive oil on US supermarket shelves having some degree of adulteration, to no real olive oil at all. Bit like their honey. So once calibrated I'll see if the olive oil gives 26.5, if so, all good. 🙂
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