Apiary Diary December 2021

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Mark Lawrence

Founder Member
Gold
44
66
Christchurch
Experience
Breeder
Great to see blue sky in Christchurch today. Managed to escape a couple of boxes of honey off in between rain showers in the last few days. Spent last night extracting - manual spinner. Xmas presents sorted😎
 
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Alastair

Founder Member
Platinum
8,415
9,682
Auckland
Experience
Semi Commercial
I've moved house slightly out of town. So I'm having to re learn what to expect from the girls

Bees do really well in suburbs. The beekeeping is easy.

Putting bees out of town can be a rude surprise, depending just where. It may take several years to get a handle on it.
 
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kaihoka

Gold
328
270
whanganui inlet
Experience
Hobbyist
We will extract whatever it is the bees collect while at the farm. Hopefully a high percentage of lavender is in the resulting honey.
I have read lavender honey is really nice .
I planted a patch near my hives.
I know it will end up in a blend but I read it is mild and bush honey is often strong .
 

Josh

Gold
973
714
Christchurch
Experience
Hobbyist
so.... turns out it's not the end of swarm season.

Despite one hive having an unused honey super, and space with a QR hive.... a dozen "swarm" QC seen across the second brood box. Hive strong and QR so presumably feeling a bit cooped up with all the rain and decided to do something about it.

Used frames to boost a possibly queenless hive and make a nuc.

Then next hive had 4 supercedure cells.... maybe🤞. So took a nuc off that one too, just in case.

Busy for just 4 humble hobby hives... makes me appreciate the work commercials put in
 
5,705
6,253
canterbury
Experience
Commercial
Soooo ..... The pressure is on to get the bees tidied up for Christmas ...... queen right and boxed up.
With 24c days we are now shaking nectar from the brood as the clover starts to yield.
The bees are all out of the bush and placed on clover sites this side of the hill. Itr's all about the economics ..... 0-9 honey is potentialy worth $2/kg more than dew.
Being close to home we add another one or two boxes.
Boxes are rationed as we don't have enough and i've had the hard squeeze put on from The Boss that I am not allowed to invest in infrastructure.`
Assuming they get filled, they are close to home to pull off and extract.


I crack 'em and check for sealed brood and even up the pallets for one last time.
Cells that went out on the 25/11 still are'nt mated ..... but oh well, we just brood them up with sealed brood from strong hives and hope for the best. We don't bother to find the queen ..... just shake the bees off the frame and transfer it to the weaker hive.

'Girl' gives the colony a final varroa knockdown with an blue cloth soaked in Oxalic ..... Main Man slaps on a box and puts the lid on.

It seems to have been a long spring, but I think we got there .53DB3723-6FAF-48A3-B732-9F3E4D5C0C13.jpeg
 

kaihoka

Gold
328
270
whanganui inlet
Experience
Hobbyist
@kaihoka have you had the big boys flying hives in around your way this season ?
i do not know but i will find out.
there have been changes the the guy from Riwaka who puts hives on mine and neighbors around me has got more sites out here and in pakawau.
other beeks are moving out and making gaps.
the manuka is having a great flowering but so is everything else and ther is the wind and rain so not much honey may come from it.
 
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974
494
EYREWELL
Experience
Hobbyist
I caught my 4th swarm in 12 days here in a little corner of my property last night! 4 in 12 days.Wow!
My neighbour took on one xmas eve in a nuc he had because I had run out of floors. Anyway,last night to reclaim a floor and catch this swarm,
I did my first ever dump!!!😔😲 My tiny drone laying colony is now in a ball hanging on a pine tree at back of property. Looking at the beeless comb,it was easy to see it was good to claim back my gear. I feel a little sad for the bees. I know I could have papered them to a strong hive. I just don't have enough gear to spare. I have 9 colonies at the moment. Jeeez Louise!! 🥰
 

Mummzie

Staff member
1,243
1,126
Tasman
Experience
Hobbyist
I have 9 colonies at the moment. Jeeez Louise!! 🥰
Aah..........hive creep. The fact that not only do the bees breed, but also the hives. The skill of keeping colony numbers to the quantity you want, or even to match the available gear is quite a challenge.
 
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974
494
EYREWELL
Experience
Hobbyist
Aah..........hive creep. The fact that not only do the bees breed, but also the hives. The skill of keeping colony numbers to the quantity you want, or even to match the available gear is quite a challenge.
And that is without catching swarms! Not going over 10!!!!!
 
974
494
EYREWELL
Experience
Hobbyist
so.... turns out it's not the end of swarm season.

Despite one hive having an unused honey super, and space with a QR hive.... a dozen "swarm" QC seen across the second brood box. Hive strong and QR so presumably feeling a bit cooped up with all the rain and decided to do something about it.

Used frames to boost a possibly queenless hive and make a nuc.

Then next hive had 4 supercedure cells.... maybe🤞. So took a nuc off that one too, just in case.

Busy for just 4 humble hobby hives... makes me appreciate the work commercials put in
I just caught my 4th swarm in 12 days. Bees have had time to make cells whilst cooped up due to the long run of rain. Someone,
somewhere is losing some bees. Mine love home. And it seems so do lots of other colonies.🥰🌻💐🌷⚘🌺🌻🌼
 
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tommy dave

Gold
BOP Club
225
258
mostly wellington, sometimes dunedin
Experience
Hobbyist
I just caught my 4th swarm in 12 days. Bees have had time to make cells whilst cooped up due to the long run of rain. Someone,
somewhere is losing some bees. Mine love home. And it seems so do lots of other colonies.🥰🌻💐🌷⚘🌺🌻🌼
No swarm cells in any of your hives? Seems the most likely origin of all these swarms, they tend to cluster fairly close to the hive they come from...
 
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