Apiary Diary September 2021

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1,310
1,790
North Canterbury
Experience
Commercial
My advice for what it’s worth would be if you were going to try a new treatment for the first time to do so in the spring when the colony is in the growth phase.
Much more forgiving during this phase for obvious reasons.
I have again wintered over a couple hundred hives with ox, bees have come through very clean, but.. they hit autumn clean after ox goes in at harvest sometime in Jan.
blindly adding ox to a colony following a summer with no treatment, at a time when colony population is in the declining phase could have dissapointment written all over it.
 
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730
583
Christchurch
Experience
Semi Commercial
Freeload all you like. Many of us here were early adopters, or in the conversation from the beginning. I rate them highly. My only word of warning is to be consistent with your timing as, realistically, they only last six to ten weeks.
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.. many of us here we
 
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Dansar

Founder Member
BOP Club
6,169
5,669
Putaruru
Experience
Commercial
4 weeks ago we found a hive on its last legs. It had chomped through most its winter feed by early July sometime and had received a dry sugar feed to tide them over until I was back from other work duties to deal with the apiary. They got a small feed of syrup by less experienced staff early August and I caught up with them for varroa treatments at the end of August. Ideally they should have had a top feeder put on and received a bulk feed.
Anyway the result we came across was the typical last gasp of what was a big colony with most dead out front and on the floor.
There was about 4 frames of sad bees and the queen remaining alive (just alive), so…..
Reduced it to one box, gave them syrup in the internal frame feeder and I poured a bit over the bees to encourage grooming and incidental feeding.
Checked them yesterday. All alive.
Boosted back up with 4 frames of capped brood and attached nurse bees plus a frame of pollen, honey and attached bees all from several colonies. Smoked the beejeezus out of them to mask pheromones.
Added more feed (2.5 litres) 1/2 a Megabee pollen substitute and another brood box. Happy beekeeper happy bees.
Back in a week to put a top feeder on that I never seem to have on the Ute🤣
Yes! they survived!
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Spread the frames ready for some reinforcements
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Boosted ready to expand with 4 frames of capped brood included
5D79EBA1-C84B-492C-A64F-0F4FAF31EC0D.jpeg
 


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