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  1. M

    What did you do in the Apiary today?

    You do seem to have a chip on your shoulder about people with exam certs. I wonder what happened in the past to generate that level of contempt ? Actualy don't have single module to my name I'm afraid as I came through on the old system of four 3 hour exams, an all day senior practical and...
  2. M

    What did you do in the Apiary today?

    Is it wise for a mod to issue veiled threats ? Going back to squirrels. If we could persuade the UK pop of the nutritional value of grey squirrels (Elvis ate them if that is any recommendation) and also encourage eating rabbits more often then the problem could be potentialy be solved . On the...
  3. M

    Superseding strains vs swarmy strains.

    If the colony is thriving and producing lots of honey and doesn't attempt to swarm or is easily put off swarming and supersedes the queen in her third year then I am happy to go along with it. However be careful in selecting for supersedure. I knew a BIBBA member (now long time deceased) who...
  4. M

    What did you do in the Apiary today?

    Nice day today so visited the out-apiary on the farm to heft the hives. Not been since early december when I trickled Oxalic. No evidence of green woodpecker damage and all colonies flying (so no losses so far this winter) and all seem OK for stores (although 4 of them may need topping up in a...
  5. M

    What's flowering as forage in your area

    Bees still working Hellebores. They are one of the few plants (along with crocus) the bees from the hives in my garden actually bother with at this time of year. I also have lots of snowdrops,daffs and Daphne flowers out but not seen a bee on them yet this year.
  6. M

    Division boards for queen rearing

    I know someone with 35 colonies that uses Horsely boards routinely for swarm control/prevention and he has also used them successfully for queen rearing as an alternative to Cloake board. Split boards with excluder across the central "hole" also work well enough (so called demarree board having...
  7. M

    Importation of bees

    Be great if sections became popular again . I collect section tureens so would welcome potteries producing them again.
  8. M

    What's flowering as forage in your area

    14 C today garden bees are working the Hellebores for pollen
  9. M

    Microscopy for Nosema Diagnosis

    Nosema apis spores look like this
  10. M

    Woodpecker damage

    That large tree looks somewhat rotten and with the possibility that large branchs could some time in the near future fall off so not a good idea to have hives directly underneath it.
  11. M

    What did you do in the Apiary today?

    Took this photo a few days ago of the bee cemetery (=concrete slabs) after the undertaker bees had dumped the dead (from two colonies and 2 maisie nucs) that had accumulated on the floors over several weeks of cold weather.
  12. M

    Good news for bees - Cotoneaster being promoted as a pollution buster

    Have been called out several times in the past to "swarms" which turn out to be just lots of bees simply foraging cotoneasters.
  13. M

    Hive Density - When are there too many?

    Often see large groups of hives on the Heather at Yorkshire moors
  14. M

    Woodpecker damage

    We have had frozen ground for weeks until yesterday so I half expected to have a woodpecker problem this month (as in some previous years) as they only attack beehives when they can't get through the frozen surface of pastures for several days to reach the yellow ant nests. However not a sign...
  15. M

    Thymol for nosema

    You can also have Nosema with no dysentery present if the bees have Nosema ceranae. This relatively recent "intro to UK" strain is becoming the predominant one in some parts of the UK displacing the Nosema apis strain that most of us are familiar and which was often accompanied by dysentery
  16. M

    What is happening to our queens

    In my limited experience I find there is often a correlation between queens failing and a several weeks of poor weather around the time they got mated. Supersedure queens that mate in late summer sometimes fail maybe a shortfall in drones at that time of year?
  17. M

    Isle of Wight Disease?

    Like for many virus disease, bees vary in their susceptibility to chronic paralysis virus and this has an underlying genetic basis. If you requeen all your colonies with obvious signs of CP with queens bred from colonies that have no evidence of it you will find that the incidence in your...
  18. M

    Varroa Treatment

    Apple must be winding everyone up. They may add calcium Phosphate or Cornflower as a free flowing agent https://www.britishsugar.co.uk/perch/resources/icing-sugars.pdf
  19. M

    Varroa Treatment

    I found dusting bees with icing sugar in a freshly collected swarm (still in the container before hiving them) a relatively innocuous way of stripping phoretic mites off them and based on 8 swarms ( collected from around the town a few years ago) treated this way produced mite drops (typically...
  20. M

    What did you do in the Apiary today?

    Mild weather today (a change from the snow we had a couple of days ago that brought traffic chaos) and bees are flying (washing also out so expect trouble for the other half when she sees the yellow spots . They are obviously eating the stores as quite a pile of white/pale yellow cappings...