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Found 1822 results

  1. HI, I've kept bees before but not recently and I now know that I previously had lots of gaps in knowledge. I'm planning to set up this winter but have some questions: I previously found the full supers too heavy for the 2 of us to lift easily so would like to get half depth or 5 frames. I only want enough honey for a small household so I thought this might be adequate. I've had advice though that it's better to get 8 frames as 5 frames are hardly worth the trouble. What do you think? Would I be better with fewer frames or lesser depth? I know I'll not have standard accessories available for non-standard sizes so don't want to limit myself. Are painted non-treated supers as good as the Tan E or Thermowood that Ceracell sell? For my small operation do you think I should get a bee blower or will bee escapes and smoking be enough? WE've all gone a bit anti-plastic so I thought I'd give wood frames with wire a go. A bit nervous about the change as I previously found the plastic frames easy to deal with I want the hobby to be as enjoyable and trouble-free as possible so any advice welcomed. Robin West Auckland
  2. So this year I got no honey at all... But ive learnt about swarming, queen failure, varoa and wasp pressure. I’ve also rediscovered the fun of local honey, yum. Nothing better than going out for a coffee and leaving with an extra treat for later. Or being given a sympathy jar from a more successful colleague at work Get out out there and buy local.
  3. I reduced access on my hive doctor bases to minimum on the centre disc a few weeks ago to minimise robbing but I have noticed lately that the girls are queuing up to get in and out. they seem to manage eventually so the question is should I increase access now there are fewer wasps and robber bees or leave as is for the winter. pics are from mid afternoon today.
  4. When I took the honey super off before putting strips in there was plenty of room in the remaining two boxes, took the strips out today and put the feeder back on for winter but they are absolutely chocka with honey, should I take some combs out to return to them later, put a super back on, or trust that now they have filled the available space they will simmer down? there is a small patch of brood on each of two combs, surrounded by honey. The entrance is about 30mm and they are dealing very ably with wasps and robbers.
  5. Hi fellow beekeepers, I've had a hive which has been queenless for a while now. When I first noticed it, I added a frame of young brood from another hive, but they didn't raise a queen from that brood. So, I added another frame of brood - still no queen. Why wouldn't they raise a queen from the brood (contained lots of eggs to choose from), when they clearly don't have a queen. No sign of disease in the hive, nor large numbers of dead bees. As you'd expect, they have plenty of honey - they haven't had to raise brood for a while now. Now the bee numbers have really started to fall off (end of season, and no laying queen). Interesting that no laying workers have materialised, maybe because of the added frames of brood? It has been a lovely Auckland autumn with warm weather, but I'm wondering whether it is too late in the season to save this hive. I've just ordered a new queen, and hope to place her in the hive tomorrow.
  6. Removed Bayvarol strips from my 2 Hives today & down to 1 part frame of brood in 1 hive and other 2 part frames.Both Queens reduced in abdomen so shutting down for next 2 months. Fingers crossed Varroa treatment has worked before Apivar in early August. Stores are good but number of bees are much reduced from Summer. Any thing else I should do? Have insulated roof.s with 12mm foam.
  7. Hi guys. Took out mite strips from hive 10 days ago. Had eggs, capped & uncapped brood. Today no eggs, a bit of capped brood and about 8 capped queen cells located between top and mid frame. Thinking I have lost queen. Should I remove all queen cells and amalgamate with another hive? Bee numbers look good to my inexperienced eye. Thanks
  8. Any thoughts on this would be appreciated. I have a hive that is now 6 3/4 boxes tall. I have extracted 4 boxes from it and it has 2 more ready. It has been excellent. However all last season I had to keep fighting to prevent it swarming, and in hindsight I think it was trying to superceed as it had cells with eggs in them all spring, summer and autumn. They are pretty dark bees. This year it hasn’t been so bad, but the queen is now a minimum of 2 seasons old. The 2 brood boxes has one box that is pretty pollen bound, so I have removed 2 frames and put nice new drawn comb in. The second box is nearly all brood, about 2/3 capped with small patches of eggs and lots of larvae at all stages. Today I found cells with eggs/grubs. I’m inclined to let the hive cap them and keep the best one then let the hive sort it out. The first photo shows the cell that had me thinking supercedure, but no queen cups on that frame have eggs. The ones in the second photo have grubs. Is my approach the right approach? Here are photos.
  9. Hi everyone, I have two hives I just started this season - for fun and honey obviously because its always been something I've been interested in. I have been given a whole lot of supers and lids and frames that belonged to a family member who has passed away - so this opens up the opportunity to have more hives with little cost: re wiring the frames and foundation at around $10 a box. We are fortunate enough to live on our own small dairy farm which covers a long stretch of a braided river - there is a huge berm that is fully of gorse and broom, as well as a lot of white clover in our pastures (photo attached showing rough berm beyond the tall pines). The bees have done marvelously this year in my garden. Another beekeeper has almost a dozen hives down one end of our riverbed and from what he says these have done very well too - with boxes of spring honey harvested as well. I work on the dairy farm normally, and part time as a vet, but its always good to look at ways to diversify income on a farm. My question is - if as a hobbiest I can have 11 hives (or more I guess). How many boxes of honey can I expect to harvest in a season - 2? or maybe 3? What can I do with this honey - can i simply sell it to a processor who will extract my frames and return them to me? If this is possible what kind of money is honey worth sold as unextracted? Can a commercial extractor pack my honey and return some of it to me so I can sell it to my neighbors - potentially they might like that. Are there any hobby beekeepers out there who extract and pack their own honey in accordance with all the food safety standards etc? Is it costly to set up and maintain this? I was thinking of buying a 2 or 4 frame manual extractor but i'm wondering if this is a good idea because it could become obsolete if I get into this. On this subject I am interested in recommendations for an extractor suitable for a couple of hives if I just keep this low key. TIA and sorry for the novel, I am finding beekeeping a fascinating experience, they are amazing creatures. Rachel
  10. Hi newbeek here, coming into my first winter in Wanganui, I acquired my hives in October last year and have built up to 4 boxes on one and 3 on the other (it was a nuc to begin with). No queen excluder, just thought I would try it this way... I have noticed in the three box hive a lot of pollen in the bottom box, brood in the middle and honey on top. I want to keep the honey on for winter, but how do I manipulate the pollen, do I take it off completely so its just a two box hive?? you kind comments are welcome.
  11. So just over two weeks ago we harvested the honey out of the school hives. We were using the scrape technique to get the honey and wax off the plastic foundation. I popped the wets back on the hive they came from. While I was there, I removed the queen excluder. Currently the hive has 2 fd boxes with the 3/4 box of honey super wets on top. Today I popped the lid to see what they had done to the wets (being my first honey harvest and all). To my surprise I saw this. I say surprise but I tried to run the hive without an excluder and found the queen laying in the top box early in the season. So she has a history of climbing to the top. They have drawn out most of the frames, apart from a couple only half done. Clearly lots of nectar coming from somewhere. They are going to be going into winter with a stack of stores.
  12. Periodically I get the below. The seems to happen in little patches and seems to clear up as I reduce varroa numbers. The bees chew them down and remove them. This hive had 15 varroa per sugar shake, now down to 1-2 after 5 weeks. Argh, the time out on editingmposss is way too short. ‘Bald brood’ seems to be what I’d be calling it, with wax moth being a common cause according to the google machine. Is this guess even close? They are usually quite close together...
  13. One of my hives seems to be in real trouble, I think the other 2 hives are using it as a storehouse. I placed staples on March 5th at which time (like the other 2) it had a full box of stores, Queen was still laying and all seemed well, checked again a fortnight later and did not detect any problems. Yesterday however I spotted a wasp exiting the hive, which I killed, but I then found a carpet of dead bees on the HD base On further inspection there was no new brood or eggs and what was there looks unhealthy and no stores whatsoever the bees were mostly clustered in one corner of the box But I did spot the queen so am hoping all is not lost I gave them 3 frames of honey which was all gone this morning though suspect it was robbed again I have now made up some sugar syrup at 2:1 which I will give when it cools but was wondering if I should close the hive right up in order to make sure they get the benefit?
  14. Can an experienced Beek enlighten me further? I found a wee worker bee wandering around on my brassicas she caught my eye because her anatomy seemed unusual, her abdomen was almost spherical and about the same size as her thorax. The foragers in my 3 hives on the other side of property are quite large with long abdomens. What am I observing here?
  15. Hi all. I'm new. My partner and I have 1 hive in suburban garden. Noticed bearding 2 weeks ago - bees clustered around entrance. Figured they were hot and overcrowded. This evening went to have a look, take some honey out and put another super on top of two already there. Tried to take top super off, but very tight and frames from lower box were lifting too when we were trying to lift top box off. Seems lower frames were stuck to top box, I guess that was lots of wax doing it. We didn't have strength or wherewithal to complete the job which I guess was to scrape wax off tops of frames so they dropped back into bottom box. So we just put another super on top and retreated. Would still like to extract some honey. Do we need more people to help us lift while someone scrapes wax off? What do you suggest?
  16. Kia ora, this is my first post. I have had an interest in beekeeping for a few years now. I joined the hobbiest club a couple of years ago, been reading lots of articles/books and have finally purchased my first nuc at the end of January. I am all about having my garden pollinated by a fine group of wahine! And about sharing some honey amongst my whanau. My hive appears to be doing reallly well so far. I have built a long langstroth hive with 22 f/d frames, like on trevs bees channel. I have it split down the middle, with a divider and placed my nuc in the centre with a couple of spare frames on each side. I plan to keep the brood box this size, and let it grow stronger to help get through winter this year. I checked last week and they had built comb/drawn out over 50 percent of the new frames and were storing pollen in a couple of them. I am using foundationless wired frames (just trying to keep things natural) there are all different stages of larvae within the brood. Good brood patterns and honey stores. The thing i am a little uncertain on is my hive entrance. I have a metal disk. I have kept it on the slots that are like a queen excluder. Was worried about my hive been a little weak and the bees from the community garden 100 metres away coming to rob my hive. Should this be to much of a concern, or should i spin the disk around to about half fully open to allow for drones to exit(not sure if they can through those little slots?) And for the bees to clean out the hive. When i opened it last week, bees were flying out the top dumping dead bees and saw one taking a chunk of something twice the size of itself and dumping it over the fence! Is there certain times of the year that this entrance should be changed? I will try and put a pic or vid up of my hive entrance. Appreciate any advice or help. Nga mihi (thanks) Tane.
  17. I have just been in to add more built foundation to my very busy hive. This went into the middle of the bottom brood box as it is apparent they had requeened due to the previous queen dieing and in that time left absolutely no where for the new queen to lay. My fear is, as I have no brood just yet, that I possibly might have damaged the new queen in the whole process of sorting the hive . It's been pretty full on with inspections in the past week to access then attempt to fix the problem.. She was trying to lay into frames of pollen. Is there any effective way to tell if a hive is queenless early without disturbing the hive? Thank you
  18. I was gifted a cheap chinese plastic honey gate. It leaks water so I presume it would also leak honey. What is a good budget honey and where from please.
  19. Hi I have my first hive that has grown from a nucleus. I currently have two full boxes, a queen excluder and a 3/4 box above that. I had a look in it a few days ago and noticed that while the bottom box has heaps of brood - and i saw my queen she is only a couple of months old because the grafted one failed and they made a new queen. But the second box is choc full of honey most of it capped and they are working on the box above the queen excluder. My question is doesn't the queen need more room for brood? It doesn't look like she has been into the second box at all and now there is no room for her to lay in there anyway because its full.. Should I put another box in there and move that full one up above the excluder? I have not seen any queen cells, and have checked all the frames. They look to be doing amazingly well, its very exciting! TIA
  20. NEW BEEKEEPERS: What does the beekeeping industry do to make you excited to come into this field? Why or why not?
  21. So I’ve decided to use 50% EP staples for the winter. All the regular “teaching” is honey off and treatment in, so that you can get treatments finished in time to winter down. But I have 40% EP on already, so I’m planning that my 50% EP will go on at winter down. And knowing that my bees will eventually move up, I’m putting in 4/box (knowing it might be a small overdose) to ensure brood coverage all winter, regardless of where they go. I’ve not seen a lot of end of season discussion yet, and be interested in people’s thoughts.
  22. I have split a double brood box hive to help requeen, added the queen cell to the queenless box, she has hatched looks mated but not quite laying yet. I have just today dispatched the old “angry queen” in the other box to be able to reunite using the newspaper method. Is tomorrow too early? Should I wait until the new queen is laying? The new queen also has a honey box still on (About to remove) should I reunite on top of the honey box or under with newspaper both sides?
  23. Hi, I caught a swarm off a fence post into a box and unfortunately I didn't know enough to move it immediately to where my other one was (approximately 500m away). Someone I know suggested that i close them in for 3 days and move them to reduce the risk of them going back to the post area. Does anyone have any suggestions, or is this a compete no no. If I can't move it I will have to register it as another Apiary site, and while this is not a problem I don't really want it sitting next to the dairy shed getting splattered by sprinklers. TIA, Rachel
  24. I placed a queen excluder on a hive around xmas time. Somehow I ended up with the queen on the wrong side so have brood all through the honey supers. She's marked so wasn't a supercedure or anything like that. I moved her downstairs today. Just a bit worried about brood space. It seemed to have a lot of pollen stored. Pretty much packed. I popped in two drawn frames with about 30% pollen I was keeping for an experiment. Will this be enough space and will the bees move the stored pollen above the excluder to create space? or should a put a few new frames in? I don't have any drawn ones but a couple with foundation.
  25. Hi all, I suspect my hive has swarmed but I would love a more experienced opinion. Several days ago I was getting some bearding, late in the afternoon and into the evening. One day it was quite intense. The days were hot so I wasn’t overly concerned but still kept an eye out. I have a flow hive and I extracted a full frame. I then noticed the bees seemed to be taking honey out of the almost full frames which seemed strange to me and I was wondering what they were up to. No bearding in the last 2 days (it’s a bit cooler too). And yesterday I inspected the hive. Activity seemed less but once in the hive there seemed to be heaps of bees. Noticed a few queen cups, but didn’t see any capped queen cells, although I may have missed it. Lots of honey in the brood frames, along with larvae of various developmental stages. Love a second opinion as I only have the one hive so nothing to compare it to.
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