Email from the Southland and Sad News About One of my Hives

My Hives TodayWe have had a very nice e mail from the Southland beekeeping Group – itself a newly formed bee organisation – offering congratulations of the formation of the Rodney Beekeepers Club.

I have responded with thanks, and hope that we can retain contact with this new southern club.

I had a look at my hives today intending to undertake an oxalic acid vaporizer test. Unfortunately I had somehow killed my queen when last I looked and whilst there was an abundance of brood and stores there were no eggs. We took some brood and eggs from our second hive and trust the bees will requeen.

Another look at the end of March will tell us wether we have succeeded.

Gary did a Powdered sugar shake on our queen less hive with about half a cup of bees in a jar covered with sugar the sugar was then shaken onto a white board and sprayed with water- two mite were discovered. Gary has a article about this on the kiwimana site Powdered Sugar Shake – Counting Varroa Mites using icing sugar

Kiwi Oxalic Acid Vaporizer

Kiwi Oxalic Acid Vaporizer

The oxalic acid fume was given a prelim test showing us how the burner works. We are as a result considering purchasing one – but better still perhaps – would be for the club to purchase a unit which could be hired by members at a nominal rate.

We are still looking for a club apiary site so if any of you know of a site that might be available – please let a member of the committee know so that we can arrange for a look.

I am considering holding a wax dip for supers lids hive mats and bottom boards for members who may wish to protect their equipment using this very good system.

I am happy to donate the wax and would suggest that perhaps a member may like to bring along a twin gas burner and donate the gas or perhaps make a small charge to members who wish to wax dip. Please give me a ring if this is of interest. Supers can be painted after the dip – whilst hot – so bring your own paint and a broad brush – they must be painted at once and as quickly as possible but it is not necessary – unless of course you want a pretty box.

Claude Bee

The First Meeting of the Rodney Beekeepers Club

On 12th February 2014 a meeting was held at Farmlands Mill Road Helensville.

Arising out of this meeting the Rodney Beekeepers Club was formed.
As with all new organisations an election of officers took place and arising out of the voting the following officers were elected.

President: Peter McNab
Vice President: Claude Buchanan
Secretary: Jo Burgess
Committee members: Jason Everard, Bruce Burgess, William Titford
Patron: Brian Alexander

A proposed constitution was circulated to people present and this will be discussed and finalised at the next meeting. It is planned to meet every 2nd Wednesday with the venue to be decided and advised to those present.

A mixture of beekeeping experience was found from those who know little or nothing, ranging through people who had some limited experience to a few who had extensive beekeeping experience and knowledge.

    The key note among all present was:-

  • Learn more about Apis Mellifera ( The Honey Bee ) and its vital importance as a pollinator.
  • To share ideas at meetings and field days – to learn from experienced bee keepers, and promote peoples understanding and appreciation of the Honey Bee.
  • To help eliminate peoples fear of the Honey Bee which seems to be ingrained into them from childhood.

Respect, understanding, and knowledge would go a long way to overcoming this seemingly innate fear.

One must ask – do people advise their children not to drive a car or not to swim in case they have an accident or drown – No – they educate their children to learn to drive and swim.

So it should be with bees – educate and understand.

More people die on the road or drown than are ever stung by a bee.

World wide bees are under threat from over use and/or careless use of pesticides, invasion of the hive by varroa mite and other diseases of the bee. Beekeeping with attention to good beekeeping practices and education are probably the main aims of the club. With the side issue of meeting like minded people socially and producing a crop of fine local honey.

If interested in joining our club – contact Peter McNab – 09 420 6179 or Claude Buchanan – 09 420 9719

or fill out the below form:-