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Put this on your calendar

Field day, working bee

August    6th  Club day..

Program..start at 10am to 1pm.

No parking in the padock it is too wet…so only use the shingle drive please…

NO PARKING in the driveway.

Gum boots  are a Must. 


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Committee meeting

The committee meeting will be held Monday the 1st of August so any questions, thoughts for next year, general business etc., will need to be in writing to the secretary ( or myself ( by Friday 29th of July. Or: the club new Post Office Box number 33464!

This will also apply to submissions to be presented at the AGM on the 20th of August. They need to be in by 10th August to give us time to make allowances for investigation if needed. On that note we need a new Treasurer: Kerry Kearney has given terrific service to the club for a number of years as our valued treasurer, a true guardian of the purse! Please put your hand up if you think you could fill this important role. I am sure Kerry will steer you through the job.

Finally is there any computer geek in the club who knows how we can set up all the member’s email addresses so we can send out communications with one press of the button! It simply is too costly to send out communications by letter (Snail Mail) in this day and age.

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Apiculture New Zealand

Well the club, meaning you, has joined API (Apiculture New Zealand), this means at long last we are affiliated to the National Beekeepers Organization.

For the first time ever the annual API Conference was held at the brand new Christchurch Convention Centre (called Te Pae?) We were one of the first to use the centre and it is absolutely brilliant and both a credit and asset

for Christchurch City.

Even better we volunteered to do gift packaging, front desk welcoming and various hands on duties! My heartfelt thanks to the following volunteers who gave their time over the three days:

This was a golden opportunity to promote our club and help build a bridge between the professionals and amateurs, our club name was prominent to all.

My sincere thanks and gratitude to the following volunteers: though I don’t know about the bottom name!

Gordon Nairn

Irene Siemonek

Jeff Robinson

Susan Gifford

Lee Carmichael

John Mc Cormack

John Kennewell

Lindsay Moir

Paul O’Donnell

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Jeff Robinson’s talk on Sat 7th of May, Field Day 2022

Jeff discussed how to make a bee escape board when reducing your hive to one box of brood one box of honey and a feeder for winter. 

Pests to watch out for when storing your frames over winter.

Greater and lesser wax moth and their eggs.

Franklin Clubs excellent page on wax moths
Varroa – making sure you put in your treatments for varroa and alternate the type of treatment to make sure your treatment has the greatest effect ridding your hive of varroa mite.

  • If you have honey to take off you can store it as comb in the freezer over winter.
  • If you have rogue comb, how to extract the honey simply and easily.
  • If you have weak hives or lose a queen at this stage the best thing to do is to marry up the hives using the simple newspaper method

basically the same here in NZ– without having to go into the hive to remove paper.

  • Feeding your bees in the winter:
  • Sugar syrup feeding over winter:
  • Pollen patties:

Disease recognition- why check in winter? Your bees will reduce in number with the change in season and they rely on us as beekeepers to check they are healthy and well.

Hive Beetle Trap Surveillance

We are taking part in the hive beetle trap surveillance

  • The new small hive beetle project is another example of a project based on biosecurity threat priorities. While small hive beetle isn’t known to be present in New Zealand, its proximity to our country means it’s a threat worth being prepared for.
  • This new project is unique in that it calls on volunteer beekeepers from the community to maintain traps in one of their hives. The exotic beetle traps are primarily checked by the volunteer, with the Biosecurity New Zealand surveillance team offering support. If they come across any suspect organisms during their routine checks, they will report these right away.
  • Beekeepers interested in joining the small hive beetle surveillance programme should visit the project page.

Small hive beetle is not present in New Zealand. It is a notifiable organism, which means sightings of small hive beetle should be reported as soon as possible to Biosecurity New Zealand by:

The larvae of small hive beetle cause the most damage. They tunnel through comb and consume honey, brood, and pollen. The larvae also spread a yeast, called Kodamaea ohmeri, which ferments and spoils honey and may pose a risk of causing infection in humans.

Small hive beetles among honey bees

How small hive beetle could arrive

Small hive beetle could reach New Zealand as a hidden stowaway on a range of goods. Pupae and larvae can slow their own growth which means they can hide out for long periods of time – weeks to months – before they emerge as adults. Adult beetles are capable of flying up to 15 kilometres, so could easily move between apiaries.

Download the small hive beetle (Aethina tumida) fact sheet [PDF, 657 KB]

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field day

Field Day 2nd April

First a huge thank you to Bunnings who have donated a brand new BBQ, you will see it this coming Saturday!

Yes, this Saturday (Sat 2nd April), is our field day that is of course if it does not rain. I will send out a notice on Friday evening re any cancellation.

It is an important agenda because wintering down is a very necessary action with your bees to ensure success in the coming spring.

Agenda (10.35am)

Wintering Down {Treating}


                                 {Disease Checks}

                                {Hive Management}

                                 {Placing of your hive in winter}

For Newbees: 9.30 to 10.30 will be a short instruction course on hive management!

Raffle: well its still the same one: The donated brand new hive from BEELINE  . It has to go this field day so bring a few dollars and buy a (or more) tickets!

Two draws one for the hive and one for the wood ware!

Also for sale: Brand-new plastic honey jars: $50.00 for 30!

AFB Course is being held at the West Eyreton Hall on 10th April starting 9.30, which is the second Sunday. I recommend all for a refresher course only $10.00 each.

Ring Lindsay Moir 0211166 713 for more info.

On 19th May at 6.30 at 7pm Ara are holding another fundraising dinner for the club. The last was a tremendous success and everyone enjoyed the classical table service by the senior students not

to mention the delightful food. $45.00 per head book now with David Spice 027 360 1398.

No showing of passes this Saturday but EVERYONE must sign in the site book! Don’t forget your mask either.

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canceled event

Field Day Cancellation

To All Members,

As president of our club, after consultation with some members, some emails received and given

the current state of affairs in regard to Covid, I have come to the conclusion that we must cancel the Field Day this coming Saturday.

Ara and the university are suffering an outbreak of Omnicom and Covid, as indeed are a number of people in gathering places both in Christchurch and other towns. Over 100,000 people to date have been recorded with this disease in NZ. Some members are definitely nervous.

As your President I have made the arbitrary call to protect our members: no matter how insignificant the risk is by wearing masks and social distancing.

I alone will be held responsible for this call. Even if you are vaccinated you can still pass this disease on, particularly to children etc.

If you have a bee problem, or wintering down query, call Hive Master Gordon Nairn 0275389568 or any member or myself.

Be Safe!

Paul O’Donnell


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Extracting honey demo

Hi members

I have been extracting honey in my kitchen for about 4 years, using a three-frame extractor. I have got this down to a reasonably fine art without too much mess and I’m inviting interested newbies to visit me in my home to watch my procedure. 

I plan to extract next Saturday morning, 26 Feb, beginning 10.30am and lasting for about one hour. 

I live in Ashgrove Tce close to Princess Margaret hospital. There is room in my kitchen for 4 to 5 people.

If you are interested please phone me 0278 249 059.

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Beginners Day

One day only.

Saturday 19th March 8am to 4.30

Bring your lunch. All your boxes / floor / frames / nails and screws, foundation etc.

This course will show you the right way to enjoy the best of beekeeping without spending all your money.

Questions to Gordon 0275389568

COST. $ 100.00 non club membership.Club members $60.00.

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