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Oma last won the day on January 4 2021

Oma had the most liked content!


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  1. I recently did a AFB check for a new beekeeper who was really struggling to get someone to check 7 hives. I’m sure glad this newbie was there to explain the history of each hive as I would have been very confused with what I found. There was no AFB evident and I was happy to put my name on the sheet of paper to say so. But 5 of the hives had been attempts to split nukes off the one moderately strong hive due to worries it would swarm. The beekeeper had mistakenly identified drone cells for queen cells. But we had a grand time, they had never seen eggs or lava in the bottom of cells, can now identify stored pollen. Learned to uncap suspect brood and identify when it looks healthy, used a match stick to identify and remove sac brood, learned to checked for Varroa in broken drone brood, looked for DWV. The list goes on. Unfortunately they had been told by someone to keep the new nuks shut down for two weeks. Now I’m a long way from being an expert but the results spoke for themselves, there were some dead and very unwell bees in a couple of the nuks. At least I wasn’t left wondering what happened. This beekeeper has ambitions to get to 50 hives by the end of next season, I hope the pointers I gave them over the 2 hours I spent will show them this is not something you can jump into overnight without some serious input. And I explained where to find a course to get a deca for themselves.
  2. My 80% Kamahi pollen count honey is lighter and more golden than the above Kamahi
  3. Just read the article in NZ beekeeper “What do we know about Kanuka honey?” Great information, easy to understand shows Kanuka has lots of unique features that would add to its marketing potential. Helped fill in some gaps between the differences in Manuka and Kanuka honeys. Thanks @Kate R loved it!
  4. My hives back on to the biggest freshwater wetland in New Zealand at the base of lake Taupo, so further down the road from us the flood plane prevents hive placements. There is major work being undertaken to restore the wetland to native flora and fauna, they are making great progress but there is a long way to go. The giant willow aphid is totally absent this year but their sap sucking ways have been taken over by a plague of passion vine hoppers ? As I harvest one box of honey at a time I have a large variation in types and tastes and it costs a small fortune in tutin tests.
  5. Well who would have thought pollen samples have come back nearly 80% kamahi 4% gorse 3% willow the rest unidentifiable. I’m a convert for Kamahi it sure is tasty. My bees are travelling further afield than I realised. Pollen counting adds another dimension to beekeeping.
  6. Hi @Snap I always put some of my honey in the freezer straight after I put it into the jars. Some types honey will be liquid when you get it out of the freezer but some honey very very slowly crystalizes. The good thing about the freezing honey I have discovered recently is, because the whole aging process is slowed down so much by freezing when it does crystalize it does so with a fine grain and not large sharp crystals. This is what you are trying to achieve with the creaming process. That’s the up side, the down side is you might fill up the freezer if you don’t have a large one.
  7. My understanding for the edge protection in the first place was because the girls can't get their nashers in a start removing the tape that holds the oa and glycerine in the hive. Apparently they have trouble destroying the staple from the flat surface and will start on the edge. Pinking shears might give them easier access in to remove the strip more quickly.
  8. Helps to be a weakling I figured out this method of getting boxes apart ages ago. The only change in my method is I wack the hive tool in with one of the wedges and use two wedges along the edge of the box parallel with the frames rather than along the (front or back) as it’s easier to prise the frames down.
  9. How exciting it could be. There are often 4 honey sellers in our tiny market but mine is the only one fully labeled with a Turangi address. The others come from Whanganui, Taumaranui, and one is unlabelled and sold without verification by an 80yr old timer who has always sold it like this and isn’t about to change any time soon.
  10. Had a gentleman come up to me in the market today and ask what had caused the honey he had sent to him from Switzerland to granulate with very course crystals. Needless to say I questioned him further and told him it was illegal for honey to come into nz. He said it had been posted to him and customs had not stopped it and was happy to have got it in without detection. ? Is it not detected as food by the mail screening process or are our border controls only interested in drugs? He said he consumed all the honey but it wasn’t very nice, and disposed of the container by burning it, then had to buy some Manuka honey at great expense to send back in return!
  11. You are right Kaihoka, and a few more things to add to that list of 50yrs ago, washing out plastic bags and drying them out in the sunshine so that they could be used over and over again, replacing that big scoop in the phosphate loaded soap powders with a spoon to cut down on recommended over use, or using sunlight soap instead, over population was a biggie and very often discussed when figures of the “boomers” and the population explosion projected forward. Large families that had been the norm were frowned upon, I’m sure that’s why the contraceptive industry was born. And if your religion or elders and betters, were against contraception you were left with a quandary. Trying to protect our natural resources from think big projects being steam rolled ahead. I could go on but I should turn off the lights and get some shut eye.
  12. Just shelled whole nuts? Probably roasted first? Have you ever tried to do the with your hazels @Goran Sounds delicious!
  13. Thanks @Kate R the sample is still sitting next to the computer waiting till I have tutu samples to send. Would it help if I sent in a couple of Phacelia flowers?
  14. Do we have any Honey Awards here in NZ like the Wine Awards? The industry could maybe raise awareness of our non Manuka honey with some recognition of all the unique honeys we produce here. I know there is a competition for various Honeys at the annual beekeeping conference but that’s the only one I am aware of. What are the criteria that judges look for? it would be interesting to have it spelled out along with ways to achieve excellence for the product we put in the jar. Some of the basic things are often mentioned like not harvesting honey from brood comb, not using Varroa treatments during the flow, not feeding sugar at a time when it could end up in the honey, getting bee debris out of the harvested honey asap, tutin tests if required. Would love to hear of the finer points forum members know about. And a great selling point if you can put “5 Gold Stars” on your honey
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