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ChrisM last won the day on November 15 2020

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  • Swarm Collection Area
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    Seaside Bees
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    Hobby Beekeeper
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  1. mm, unlikely. I have never heard of anyone declaring a greater value or price on export paperwork whereas it is an advantage to reduce duty/ tax if a lower value is claimed. Are you suggesting the average price is higher than $20? That won't help at all. It seems unlikely that commercial exporters would ever risk getting black-marked by Customs. NZ Customs are nasty enough and a law to themselves normally plus this isn't sending a hand knitted cardigan to grandma.
  2. I imagine you can buy honey and then send it overseas without owning a single hive if you register yourself and have all the paperwork. So dividing export sales by beekeepers is nonsense. Without a single hive you might buy it off a beekeeper for $3/kg and then export it for $20/kg. The costs of freight and distribution would be fairly substantial. Getting it from a drum in NZ to a jar on a shelf in the UK isn't trivial, some people put a lot of effort into it. If you can buy for $3 and sell for $20 there needs to be some profit left over. The question I guess is how much profit is there and is it reasonable? If buyers and packers are making huge profits I have no idea. Anyone sitting on a mountain of honey is more than welcome start exporting it for $20. But there is no point complaining about statistical reports of customs declarations.
  3. Page 10 apiculture report 2019 ? customs export declarations
  4. we take our blind foundation dogs beekeeping. The black lab not only got stung and shy exactly as you say, but even tethered some distance away from the hive bees sometimes found him. On the other hand the white standard poodle looks a bit like a sheep and either doesn't get stung or doesn't care, off lead right up to hives no issue (so far) young poodles also bounce around quite a bit which I wouldn't think is a help either. Poodles are harder to train because they are intelligent and sharp as a tack. But I'm sure there are a number of breeds with different senses of smell that would be considered in a full time program.
  5. Hmmm, did you read the article? MPI are said to be a partly funding this research; that's all. I don't imagine MPI would be actively using the dogs unless they disbanded the Management Agency and took over the eradication of AFB themselves. far more often than you mandate beekeepers and AP2 undertake refresher courses. Given the performance of drug dogs searching post and passengers, I'd suggest we don't need to concern ourselves about the operational level of detail if we use professionals in that area. I agree. In years long past now, the agency was focussed only on the arcane wording of the statutes. Whereas now the agency is more creative thinking about how to actually get the job done and there are too many changes to list. We just have to be grateful it is now being followed up, better late than never; is a positive way to look at it. But I do object to the comments in the article that the dogs to date were in some way not fit for purpose, having refused to take any notice of the dogs those comments appear ignorant and they can't have it both ways.
  6. it is a bit like raising teenagers and then you wish them well when they go off to University to get fully trained; onwards and upwards. We hope we have equipped them with the skills to manage it. Also we do hope to get one of them back here when they retire. Meanwhile Blind Low Vision are pretty sneaky; immediately they produce another 8 week puppy to help you take your mind off it!!
  7. yes I agree. My view is that the costs of running a large scale breeding and training program like the blind foundation is really really big bucks, I don't think it is in the realm of commercial beek diy nor get-rich-quick nor ad hoc dog trainers. However, as shown by customs, blind low vision and the various other service dog entities it can be done. Blind Low Vision NZ actually does sell fully trained guide dogs to overseas blind foundations and the money that comes in, helps enable supplying extra guide dogs in NZ. So, if we had a serious AFB sniffer dog program I think it must be run by the Management Agency itself (as opposed to being tolerated by them) and it would generate money selling fully trained AFB sniffer dogs overseas, let alone employing handlers and dog stations in each region of NZ supporting local AP2. At the very least 100x more hives could be given a quick scan and only indicated hives would need be inspected by AP2. So far as I know we have only one AP2 in Tauranga, so this would make far better use of his time, if in future, he only opens hives that already most likely have AFB. But for sure it will take a lot of money, I think I read the blind foundation dogs cost about $30k each when you consider how many dogs they produce annually against how much the whole show costs to run. Once fully trained they only work for about 5 years then get retired out. So if there was a working population of 100 AFB sniffer dogs nationally, you might need to generate at least 20 fully trained dogs per year to keep that topped up. I'd suggest aiming for 30 so you could sell 10. Of all the dogs the blind foundation raises I think only about 20% make it to graduation, a lot get offloaded into companion dogs or the other services that are not quite so fussy. Anyway, it means to generate 30 dogs are year our breeding program might need to produce about 150 puppies annually. The blind foundation doesn't breed from any old mutt, currently we have a BLV standard poodle and her X Rays are being reviewed in the USA before she is considered for their breeding program or else gets fixed and goes into training. So it would be a big undertaking and the stance of the Management Agency to tread cautiously is understandable, they don't have money available to bite off more than they can chew at a whim. However, eradication of AFB is still the aim.. not management of afb. If MPI are supporting this then I'm grateful and at long last is the first recorded instance where I have applauded MPI for something/anything.
  8. Detector dogs could help save bees WWW.SUNLIVE.CO.NZ Training dogs to sniff out the highly infectious bacterial disease American Foulbrood in beehives could save New Zealand’s... article on detector dogs with funding support from a number of areas/groups. Not a single word from the management agency, may speak volumes. However since taking a lot of the work inhouse and taking on new staff their stance may have changed? I didn't know "previous methods have led to inconclusive results in the field", does anyone have proof to back up such a statement? Whatever happens, I'm a supporter of both previous, current and future dogs being thoroughly trained, used and explored. It seems to me that something like this could be a game changer if we really want to eliminate AFB. Disclosure: we are blind foundation puppy raisers and therefore extemely biased and extremely dissappointed AFB sniffer dogs are not fully funded. If the agency got into this I'd support a fee increase!! Because even if it doesn't work it is worth trying super hard and I'm actually really confident it can be made to work given the performance of drug sniffer dogs and the like.
  9. I think it is only natural that if you have several apiary sites that over time you'd use the sites that generate surplus honey. So in some regards it is self-correcting over time. However all the hobbyists in the whole country don't have many hives in total, so overstocking is often an issue where commercial beekeepers have several home apiaries that hold hives while not in work. Given the dire situation for honey prices and relatively short period of pollination there could be hives that are being parked in the semi-rural areas while beekeepers are trying to minimise costs in any given local area this could put quite a lot of pressure on a relatively small forage supply. Not everybody will have manuka sites.. Disease issues are probably the biggest concern, but year round sugar feeding doesn't make it much fun for a hobby. For the beekeepers in financial strife moving the hives away to reduce overstocking will only increase their costs and it might reduce their disease surveillance, so we have to be careful what we wish for. The long established beekeepers might have this under control, but relatively new beekeepers that have poured into the industry in the last few years might be struggling if honey prices are below cost of production. It is really hard to know, but I think overstocking isn't seen as a priority for a commercial beekeeper who is struggling because of prices/costs/sites.
  10. If Aucklanders can have beehives in their gardens on what I presume is 600sqm or less, the ravings of these guys is bizarre, what a bunch of turkeys. Turkeys however might be ideal for these unproductive lifestyle blocks.. A basic tenent of law is that you are free to do whatever you want with your own land provided you are not causing nuisance to others. Blanket rules banning some activitites should be challenged. On the other side, individuals causing nuisance should also be dealt with. For some idiot councils to reinvent the wheel is lunacy.
  11. Was this by any chance similar or related to these guys? Great Barrier gets mentioned specifically. I did a search and couldn't find anything already mentioned about End of the World, nor Paul, Art and Carl. Maybe they are on here?? I would have thought some of their claims went pretty close to the edge; legally speaking(?). But then again anything can be true on facebook. Manuka Honey - Honey With a Mission To Save Bees WWW.INDIEGOGO.COM Ethically & sustainably sourced Manuka Honey from New Zealand set out to plant trees and save bees.
  12. the 'baited box' as above contains 8 bare top bars with no foundation nor starter except for a triangle of wood at 33-34mm centres. In the centre of the box are the remaining two, both fully drawn combs, these have been baited by pouring 2:1 syrup into the cells on one side of each comb. The syrup stays put with surface tension. It is not enough to count as feeding about one cup total it acts as a house warming gift that ensures plenty of visitors into the box. Nekminit the whole box is fully drawn.. The first time (Papamoa) I did this I used a five frame box, I can't remember why that was. It was placed on the roof of the garage the swarm had hived itself couple of hours earlier into a fibrolite batch 5m away that was 2 storey. I really didn't think it would work. In the photo above (Judea Tauranga) it was when the homeowner managed to video the whole thing. I think it shows that bees are very pragmatic if you can put the right thing in the right place at the right time. More than once it has been a chimney with no access, left a box up there strapped to the flue and they hived themselves into it. If I'm collecting a swarm I'm much more proactive, but when they are in an inaccessible place I go for this option first before recommending extermination if the timing is right. If the timing is wrong I sometimes go through the exercise if their arrival date is borderline. In every one of those cases it still resulted in extermination. The 24 hours is a pretty short timeframe.
  13. except in the first 24 hours. On several occasions now we have put a baited swarm box adjacent to colony that has moved into a house and they've reversed their decision within 3 days they are all in the box. I originally felt it was a roll of the dice and worth a try. Now, I am pretty confident about it, but only if less than 24hours. One of these was captured on video but it is on facebook and I don't know how to copy it. however here is a photo of it in progress. They all came out of the grate in the house, video shows them all in the air doing a couple of circuits of the garden then they move back to where they started, but this time into the box.
  14. it is a shame that Vegans would not have top bar hives, because then you could have all your least favourite things conveniently located in one place
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