Fruitless Fall.

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In the precious dawn of an Anzac morn I sit out on the verandah with black coffee and savour the sight and smell of yellowing leaves and cool damp air.

The season is run, we are done.
The crop drummed and stacked and a warm feeling in the belly that soon it will be gone.
Tis the season for relaxation.

I've picked up a few books lately that should have been read years ago, but somehow got stashed in the book shelf and forgotten about.

'Fruitless Fall ' by Rowan Jacobsen is one of them.
It documents the disasters of CCD and Neonic attacks that struck the US beekeepers and the world back in 2007/2008.
It talks of almond pollination and pesticide loading and bees struggling with Varroa and virus's in a polluted world.
It talks of 80% winter losses and low honey prices and Beekeepers at their wits end.
It's an interestng read .

Of particular interest is of the dude in Vermont who embraced the genetics of the Russian bee, and combined with organics, runs a healthy apiary.
His name is Karl Webster ... I found him on google, still beekeeping some 14 years after his wobbly start with the Russians and a no treatement varroa policy.
I found another guy in Wyoming who runs Top Bar hives and small cell foundation ..... who also seems to live with The Mite in some sort of happy relationship.

And it got me thinking..... Tis the season of relaxation with three and a half months 'til we crack the lids again.

I need to widen my social circle and up my skill level ..... I should go do a bit of visiting.
 

southbee

Gold
270
235
Southland
Experience
Commercial
I do think they go crazy on the rata and bring in more than on anything else I know. Still, even taken that into account, good beekeeping!
Actually, just thinking about it, I've seen them go crazy on rapeseed in Germany too, but still think Rata is better.
 
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Reactions: bighands
5,693
6,227
canterbury
Experience
Commercial
It’s cold here…. -1c last night, but dandelions are starting to show, and with a warm day ir two the bees might turn a corner and get on sn upward roll.
My mate is kinda lucky… or organised.
After he had restocked hus duds with overwintered nucs he has 400 extras….
Expansion….. at $3/pound… he is smiling …. Sorta!B2EFDBB8-6EF0-4BA9-9540-E1983FA76E60.jpeg
 
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Reactions: tristan
157
107
West Coast
Experience
Hobbyist
It also depends on your newly arrived neighbouring beekeepers not overstocking the area!
With S. Rata here in the Otira valley on a good year you could place thousands of hives and everyone would get a decent amount of honey. On a moonlit night in february i have seen the bees still working. The only problem is there are only 2 or 3 landowners in the whole valley
 
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Reactions: southbee

southbee

Gold
270
235
Southland
Experience
Commercial
With S. Rata here in the Otira valley on a good year you could place thousands of hives and everyone would get a decent amount of honey. On a moonlit night in february i have seen the bees still working. The only problem is there are only 2 or 3 landowners in the whole valley
That would be awesome to see the bees working at night!
 
370
277
Mid Canterbury
Experience
Semi Commercial
That would be awesome to see the bees working at night!
In hot weather, the bees do work at night, and even the virgins go out pre sunrise to avoid heat, and the virgins will also fly back on dusk.

I am referring to my own experience over the years, and what I have observed; much of it visually.
 
370
277
Mid Canterbury
Experience
Semi Commercial
Just by the by, how does one observe something un-visually ?
What I am trying to convey, is that I have observed it. I am a beekeeper, and I have been out there continuously beekeeping - I often don't have time to record data or photograph it (particularly if bad weather).
 


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