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Found 6 results

  1. So my home hive is my strongest. My robbed hive is doing OK at is new local. Due to work and school holidays I've not been in my home hive since 4th March (6 weeks) But I've been feeding (Upside down jars) 2:1 syrup ever since my harvest. I'm very proud of my feeder, I'll post a pic but it keeps the bees in, but lets you exchange jars without them being covered in bees. The hive has done well, and it's really heavy (I'm going to heft it as soon as I can find the travel scales). I was doing a full check today (17degrees) and they've got essentially ¾ of stores, but only a small brood cluster 2 half frames. All were capped/emerging. I couldn't find the queen but the hive was heaving with bees so the tricky little madam could have easily alluded me. My question; Have I over fed and caused a "honey" jam? Or is this a prewinter brood break? I guess something could have happened to the queen, but not in my last inspection as that was too long ago, and there would be no brood at all. And the hive was very happy, and clearly working hard I'm an urban ChCh keeper (Temps are 9-20degrees still) Sugar shake was 2 mites in 1cup of bees so <1%. No signs of distress. I'm going to stop feeding now, and I put in one frame of foundation in the level next to the brood, hopefully they'll draw it out and give some extra lay space. I've wrapped the spare frame of capped syrup, and will feed it back in spring. Any thoughts would be appreciated, thanks.
  2. Hi team, Did my first inspection today, in light of all the online activity suggesting it was time to crack the lid. I found 3-4 frame ball of bees around empty frames. Some half emerged brood etc, but no capped brood. It was chilly & a cool breeze so as soon as I saw my queen I stopped. So no eggs seen but thats ok? I did see lots of DWV so have started weekly Oxalic, and I'll re-inspect in 2 weeks. I'm not doing a mite count (there was not that many bees) and with signs of mite syndrome I thought I'd treat anyway. On the good side, queen seen. And lots of capped honey (6 full frames) so I've taken off the feeder. And with lots of lay space I've not put on a top box. My first question; 1. Suggestions? 2. Any other Canterbury people finding hive in winter mode still (it has finally arrived)? Or am I actually seeing a weak varoa newbee overwintered hive?
  3. Hi everyone, Pondering the warm winter canterbury is having (and presumably elsewhere) and my bees are out several times/week. But it's not warm enough to confidently open the hive. With roaming bees and warmer climes, should I be considering winter varoa treatments with my vaporiser to help beat back the spring surge of varoa? It's a good treatment for winter in that I don't need to open the hive, and its not temperature sensitive. And some of the "science" behind oxalic acid uses it to target a bloodless treatment anyway. Further info - I don't currently strips, a philosophical choice & financial choice. Last mite count was 3% on sugar shake test (down from 8% pre-autumn treatment). I'd be interested to hear what others think/experience. I listened to kiwimana podcast recently discussing this very thing, and would be interested to hear what others think.
  4. I have 1 hive. It's now about 4 weeks old and going well. I'm feeding as much as I can, but since I got attacked by a cranky night bee I'm a bit limited by work. Hard to tell when winter is really going to start here in Christchurch, we're still getting good 20s and sun. But it'll be here soon enough. I've ready through the threads, and I'm trying to figure out what I should do to get the hive ready for the next step. I ready and watch of the north american blogs, but I'm not sure their (buried under 3 ft of snow -20°C) advice is what we need for Christchurch. Any advice, or directions to threads I can'f find, would be great. Thanks
  5. I caught a small swarm late January. I started feeding them syrup straight away, and the girls did their bit (and still are). They are now in single 3/4 box. 3x frames filled with capped honey, about 5x frames with eggs, larvae, brood and some capped honey and pollen on the outsides of those frames. 2x frames fully drawn with a little bit of nectar in it. I treated them for varroa mid Feb (Bayvarol). They are healthy! I am in Wellington. If I keep on feeding them syrup and they manage to add some more honey to the 2 empty frames so that they have a little bit more stores than what they have now, will they have enough stores to get through the winter? It is my first winter as a beekeeper, so I do not know how much honey a hive this size will consume. I have two stronger hives that started as nucs in late December. Both are now about 3x 3/4 boxes strong with quite a lot of honey frames. I could help the swarm with an additional frame of honey from each of these hives, but from what I have read on this forum, it is not a good idea to feed honey from one hive to another. Or do I have it all wrong? Thanks!
  6. Hello, I've been reading about the risk of chill etc to hives and that if the girls aren't flying, then don't open up. But I want to keep an eye on my 2:1 syrup levels in my top feeder, I presume the advice and warnings about chill shock relate to opening the main hive and frame inspections. And that the small draft caused with lids coming off for the feeder aren't relevant. Thanks for clarifying this.
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