Jump to content


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Alastair last won the day on November 25

Alastair had the most liked content!

Community Reputation

4,505 Excellent

About Alastair

  • Rank
    Guard Bee


  • DECA Holder
  • Beekeeping Experience
    Semi Commercial


  • Location
  1. What? Please explain. I was an NBA member but got no complimentary APINZ membership.
  2. Hastings and area AFB outbreak

    Absolutely nobody should be punished for getting afb. If that happened, I would have been punished myself several times in my life. I am not privy to exactly what a person would do to get into catagory 4. But suspect things like knowingly selling infected equipment, or knowingly allowing infected hives to die and get robbed, might get someone into catagory 4. Another one might be when an inspector finds and marks an afb hive, then drives past 3 months later and sees it still sitting there. All these things go on, and at the moment nothing is done about it.
  3. Hastings and area AFB outbreak

    All my life, I've seen a very small number of beekeepers who spread disease to others, regularly. By sloppiness, or in extreme cases even crazy theories they have about just how they think the disease works or how they think to make bees resistant to it. One of the new proposals is to grade all beekeepers from 1 to 4. 1 being a beekeeper who goes above and beyond normal good practise and has exceptionally good systems in place to prevent spread of afb. 2 is a person with good practise, 3 is someone who is reasonable but can be helped to improve in a few areas, 4 is someone who is a repeat offender for not dealing with afb properly when found, plus spreading it to others. If this is instituted, it would mean that for the first time ever, beekeepers who are an ongoing problem and cost to others would be formally identified, and measures put in place to correct the problem.
  4. Hastings and area AFB outbreak

    Sympathy you guys, reading between the lines sounds like the causes have been identified and being worked on, now you just got to clean up the mess which may be a several year process of extreme vigilance, by everyone. Part of the area I'm in is just about clean now after several years of hard work, education, and very good cooperation and goodwill from 99% of beekeepers. Only issue now is some of the migratory hives, never quite know what they will show up with and there has been a few hives burned plus 2 small outbreaks (that I know of) but they been contained, I think. EOD it's just a case of ongoing vigilance. My own hives are still being afb checked roughly 5 times a year. There are plans nationally to increase afb monitoring plus put some other things in place to attempt to eliminate afb. But it will only happen if beekeepers allow the levy to be increased, which for beekeepers who have never had afb, they find it hard to see the need. But I'm really hoping it will happen, afb certainly cost me an arm and a leg over the years. That's in dollar terms, never mind the emotional stress.
  5. What is this disease? Video linked

    Maybe CBPV is getting worse these days. Many of my hives suffered badly with mites last autumn as I used the OA shop towel method which was not hugely succussful. Not sure if this hive was one of them but most hives got slammed by mites harder than I would like.
  6. What is this disease? Video linked

    Will do. Might be waste of a nuc but I got a heap of them right now. The thought is it would have hatching brood from a different queen straight away so we'll see how it goes.
  7. What is this disease? Video linked

    Good question Kaihoka. When I first saw it I thought poisoning cos that's definately what it looked like, bees spinning around and the whole hive agitated. But it's in a 52 hive apiary and no other hives affected. Other thing with poisoning, it's going to be over one way or another within a few days, but this has been going a couple of months, and still no other hives affected. I'm happy with the CBPV diagnosis. Instead of just a queen I'll stick a whole nuc in it and hopefully they'll come through.
  8. What is this disease? Video linked

    OK thanks, will requeen it.
  9. What is this disease? Video linked

    OK think it's fixed
  10. This hive has had this going on for a couple of months. It's the worst case I've ever seen of what I've always known as black robber disease, but I don't know what this disease really is. Thought the hive would either throw it off, or die. But it's still battling on. What is it? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAJVMao71P0&feature=youtu.be
  11. Heatstroke

    Got it today, working in a site which is a real sun trap and very sheltered not a breath of wind. Sun beating down I was getting hotter than I realised. Nearly finished the site then I just couldn't go on, body wouldn't do it. Had to find a shady spot sit down and just chill for a while. Must happen to other beekeepers? Guys doing heavy work, wearing a suit, gloves, and in the hot sun.
  12. Mated queens disappearing

    It's pretty easy to kill queens in Hive Dr nucs, if you don't see them and they are at the edge or bottom of a comb.
  13. Mated queens disappearing

    Are you using Hive Dr nucs?
  14. Virgin laying time

    I take that as an indication of shared experience? I think every queen breeder has to deal with this.
  15. Virgin laying time

    Philbees complaint in the OP was something I heard all the time when I was a commercial queen breeder. What really happens is that the first time the beekeeper notices the hive is queenless is when he / she opens it and finds no brood. therefore they buy a queen and put it in. Not realising that the bees have by now already raised their own virgin, which immediately kills the introduced queen then starts laying shortly afterwards. The next phase of this scenario is the person rings the queen breeder and complains that the queen they bought is rubbish, black (when the one sent was italian), and makes vicious bees.