Apiary Diary September 2021

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713
563
Christchurch
Experience
Semi Commercial
I set up 25 top split nucs with queen cells during April this year using double screen boards. I used between one and three frames of brood, bees and stores - experimenting with different quantities to see what works, as well as feeding syrup.

It has been a great success with most queens getting mated before May and all wintering down with reasonable patches of brood (even the one framer). All had winter staples.

Attached is photos of a couple of typical nucs taken a week ago. The one framer experiment is now four frames and some of the three framers are now bursting out of their 10 frame boxes - having drawn out 3-4 new frames with beautiful white wax. Amazing!
 

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Josh

Gold
782
520
Christchurch
Experience
Hobbyist
Cracking Canterbury day, and finally found my elusive queen. It might seem early, but drones/drone brood and lots of nectar/pollen coming in so I decided to try a vertical split. If it fails, I can always merge them back together again.

Let the rebuild begin…
 
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5,515
5,823
canterbury
Experience
Commercial
Been out on the traps today ......
Disease check, feed check, and apply O/A strips.

The last round three weeks ago I just pop4d the lids and pumped syrup if the bees were alive. Delving into them today was .... good ..... I was surpised how strong they were, double broods pumping with brood and bees, fresh honey dew shaking from the frames, and evry so often varroa in the drone brood between the boxes.

The varroa seems to be quite early....

We are using the overboard strips from Hivemind this year.
They stink, and also they seem to have absorbed a lot more of the O/A than the gib tape staples ......

I am cautiously optimistic that it might be quite a good season.
 
1,304
1,774
North Canterbury
Experience
Commercial
Well my winter experiment of running 100 double broods with the stores in the bottom box instead of the top has been positive.
strength wise there’s really no difference, there has been none robbed out, the part I really like is in the past I’d find they had naturally eaten the stores above the nest and moved upstairs.. away from the treatment, where placing the brood above the stores they have wintered amongst the treatment and in the warmer top box, the strongest colonies have had the queen laying down into the bottom box but not many have to be fair.

fingers crossed for everyone this coming season as we roll the dice yet again.. lifes a journey.. and all the better spent with ones head inside a beehive
 
5,515
5,823
canterbury
Experience
Commercial
Thats it.
I got another notice tonight of another AFB rob out within 2 k’s of yard 206.
Thats about three this week
I’m going out to my shed to sharpen my hive tool.
The system works, but the Dipstick should never have got a DECA.
 

Alastair

Founder Member
Platinum
8,074
9,272
Auckland
Experience
Semi Commercial
What I like to see, no mites. Happy bees happy beekeeper.

A pleasure to behold.
 

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Grant

Staff member
Founder Member
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10,246
4,789
The system works, but the Dipstick should never have got a DECA
This is where I disagree and comments such as this are the basis of the reasons why.

The person who is reporting is not your issue. He's got the deca he's doing the job he's meant to do. There could be argument for preventing the rob out but with weather conditions, floods and acces is that practical?

Also where have they got it from? By your interpretation and comments they're reinfecting themselves but because you don't know who's hives are where and because of the strains on the industry, how likely is that?

Would you prefer they go underground because of being pillared on a beekeeping forum without any form of defence? You won't get any rob out warnings for your area then
 

Otto

Gold
69
149
Dunedin
Experience
Semi Commercial
This is where I disagree and comments such as this are the basis of the reasons why.

The person who is reporting is not your issue. He's got the deca he's doing the job he's meant to do. There could be argument for preventing the rob out but with weather conditions, floods and acces is that practical?

Also where have they got it from? By your interpretation and comments they're reinfecting themselves but because you don't know who's hives are where and because of the strains on the industry, how likely is that?

Would you prefer they go underground because of being pillared on a beekeeping forum without any form of defence? You won't get any rob out warnings for your area then
Agree with most of what you say Grant but @James said this was the 3rd ROB OUT notice this week. If they are Rob outs the beekeeper certainly isn't doing their job.
 

Trevor Gillbanks

Staff member
Founder Member
Gold
10,585
7,163
Palmerston North
Experience
Hobbyist
Agree with most of what you say Grant but @James said this was the 3rd ROB OUT notice this week. If they are Rob outs the beekeeper certainly isn't doing their job.
I think @James is wrong with his description.
If you get an AFB notice that says 2 km, then that means someone has found a live hive has been found with AFB.
If you get an AFB notice that says 5 km, then that means someone has found a dead hive that has been robbed out and has AFB.

I ignore 2km warning and I believe some beekeeper is doing their job.
I worry about 5 km warnings as they show that some beekeeper has not found the AFB whilst the hive is alive and it has then died out. Not Good
 

tommy dave

Gold
BOP Club
165
179
mostly wellington, sometimes dunedin
Experience
Hobbyist
The person who is reporting is not your issue. He's got the deca he's doing the job he's meant to do. There could be argument for preventing the rob out but with weather conditions, floods and acces is that practical?
afb has to be pretty far advanced to weaken a hive to the point of it becoming a dead-out.
Wonder if these alerts were afb found and dealt with, which is great!, or dead-outs, which if they are multiple are hard to forgive as that generally indicates carelessness and failure to comply with the deca over a fairly long period
 
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Grant

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Founder Member
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The answer to which lies in @Trevor Gillbanks post, which if correct, indicates it isn't a rob out.
If you get an AFB notice that says 2 km, then that means someone has found a live hive has been found with AFB.
If you get an AFB notice that says 5 km, then that means someone has found a dead hive that has been robbed out and has AFB.

I got another notice tonight of another AFB rob out within 2 k’s of yard 206.
 
5,515
5,823
canterbury
Experience
Commercial
I read the notice again .....'Robbd out AFB within 2km'

One presumes the guy who found the AFB had a DECA. The issue is that the Keeper of the bees is missing the AFB , so ....
1. Is he/she a competent keeper?
2. Perhaps their track record needs to be looked at and given some gentle upskilling.
3. Perhaps they are very competent but obtained some dead gear from a neighbour, or bought some cheap hives.

Or ,perhaps they caught it from my hives that went into the area last year for pollination, so perhaps I should not be doing pollination this year?
I would be happy enough with that because the hives that came out were riddled with Varroa, collapsed over the ensuing four months, and have burners amongst them this spring.
But the money is handy.
 

NickWallingford

BOP Club
144
201
Tauranga
Experience
Retired
In many cases the beekeeper is totally incompetent and you got the notice because the hives were inspected by an AP2 and dead robbed out hives have been found. In my experience this is more likely then the beekeeper himself reporting dead rob outs. The person or persons involved may not even have a deca.

Sadly, I think @John B could have it correct.
 

tommy dave

Gold
BOP Club
165
179
mostly wellington, sometimes dunedin
Experience
Hobbyist
must be time for my last post on the hive a friend ended up with in May that hadn't been treated for varroa since the previous spring.
Added another box today, and it's threatening to need another fairly quickly.
Miracle of varroa strips, reducing to a single box, and plenty of stores on board heading into winter - even when down to only a few frames of bees.
 

tommy dave

Gold
BOP Club
165
179
mostly wellington, sometimes dunedin
Experience
Hobbyist
Strips must work ....eh
i've been lucky so far to not have experienced strips failing to work. Touch wood. I got lucky and dodged the bad batch a few years ago, and might also be lucky re apiary location and proximity of beekeepers constantly exposing varroa to low (sub-lethal?) doses. Only strips I have used are bayvarol, apivar, and apitraz. I had a less successful experience with a gel treatment, i think it was apilife var a few years back, salvaged with strips.

I think this year is the year I finally trial oxalic/glycerine strips as an early autumn treatment - the hard work figuring out mix and medium has been done by a number of people, i do feel like a bit of a freeloader on this front..
 


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