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  1. Tiny red mite

    I am a newbee this year. Started with 2 nucs in April and now have 9 hives, all on at least a brood box, 3 on 2 brood boxes and supers. but did not touch brood boxes which are heavy. I removed 25 lbs of honey 10 days ago. Have been looking for varroa during the season examining drone brood but only saw one. Did icing sugar 2 weeks ago and got a few hundred tiny bright red mites in some hives (about the size of a pin head). they did not look like the varroa I saw in other bee keepers hives. ...
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  2. The heather 2014

    In most years my bees have been struggling to get to full strength in time for the heather. Too much swarming, too many nucs produced, poor summers and my reluctance to spend money on sugar. After managing my colonies for strength this year, and replacing queens heading some stocks with something better (thanks Jon!) I'm optimistic about a better heather crop than recent years.

    They went up a little later than planned, on 2 August. Just too much going on this year. Many thanks ...
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  3. Swarming around day four at the first attempt

    My learning curve hasn't flattened out yet! Here was yesterday's experience. The Perth and District BA persuaded me to offer a couple of hours of my time as one of the items in their early spring auction. Steve, the winner, arrived at 1pm at my main apiary yesterday.

    OK, a cast hanging in a tree as I arrived. It happens, especially as my visits have been hurried and slightly less than weekly in the main. Later we found an opened Q cell as well as a sealed Q cell in a split ...

    Updated 02-06-2014 at 10:53 PM by gavin

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  4. Tales from the Hive - Spring Cleaning

    The queen was disgruntled. Very disgruntled. “Do you really expect me to lay my lovely eggs in this?”, she grumbled. The housebees, like teenagers who'd not quite tidied their rooms to the required standard, replied somewhat grumpily, “We did our best, ma'am.”
    “Well, it's not good enough. You'll have to use this one for stores or something.” Queenie flounced off to find a better frame. Hearing the somewhat mutinous, though muted, mutterings from that part of the hive, Mitzzi went to investigate. ...
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  5. Clearer Board & Ventilation

    I am new to beekeeping (2nd yr) (1 hive in good order, 1x NUC didn't survive winter).

    I have been watching the BBC 4 Beekeeping prog (good prog) and noted that Martha Carney's WBC hive had a 1x Super with clearer board and porter bee holes open (no Porter Bee escapes in place in the normal seasonal use). She explained the use of the Porter Bee etc; but I noted that the bees have access above the super into the roof space etc; on mine I have gaffer taped the holes prior to use of ...
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