Bee a Varroa Vigilantee with a Vengence – KM095


In this show we are talking about Threat action, Cowboys, Pesticide Positive action in Vancouver, thieving mongrels and the long arm of the law. This is Episode Ninety five of our beekeeping podcast.

Gavin-WebberThis week we would like to thank Gavin Webber

He has been supporting the kiwimana buzz for over 13 months

Thanks for your support!!!, Check out Gavin’s Cheese Podcast at

If you also value what we please consider supporting us on

Aarons’ donations are helping us to set-up gear for our new ‘Teaching Apiary’ – thanks so much Aaron.

Welcome To the kiwimana buzz..

Hi, it’s Gary and Margaret here, We are beekeepers from the hills of the Waitakere Ranges in West Auckland, New Zealand. Our podcast is about beekeeping, Gardening and bit of politics about environmental issues. We also have been known to go off on tangents about other issues.

You can download the podcast directly HERE, or click on the play button above. Feel free to share it with your friends.

It’s Spring in New Zealand, and we recorded this in September 2016.

Big Shoutout to our listeners in Hawaii, United States this month.

Hawaii is the only American state that grows coffee, cocoa, and vanilla beans

Thank you for listening to our show, we know life is busy for you and appreciate you have taken the time to join us today

What’s happening at kiwimana


Burning AFB infected Hives

  • Hilary Kearney’s online Bee Course, check it out HERE
  • Bad News we got AFB at our Quarantine Apiary :(, Photo HERE
  • Congrats to Chris and Lauren First prize in the blind taste test! Officially Sheffield’s tastiest honey!!! Photo HERE
  • Crazy Stuff going on at the Day Job last week, in the words of John Hiatt “And the guy that hired you just got fired,Your job’s expired,They just ain’t told you yet
  • Caught up with Stefan Browning from the Green party in Town, he has agreed to come on the podcast
  • Wellington Beekeeping Club Visit 🙂 We talked to Eva Durrant the other night.
  • Voice mails for the 100th Show


  • Courses – intro to the world of beekeeping – great attendance
  • Introducing Seasonal Short Courses of 2 hours
  • Review Winter – and how did your colonies go
  • Spring Preparations – harping-on monitor levels treat
  • Pest Positive Action – How to prepare for swarm activity
  • Swarm catchers list – reminder, join the list HERE
  • Hive losses – is it nosema ? Have you notified your failed colonies? Article with links to help all of us Coming Soon

Kiwimana Waiting lists:

Bee colonies – closed – due to huge demand this year – working with breeder to get colonies this year.

Products – on-going as we keep building and adding new stock

Kiwimana Beekeeper Services

These are resuming on 15th September

What are you Doing Responses!!!

  • Ernst is working from home in the IT field and burning Beeswax Candles too keep warm
  • Beginner Beekeepers – another Blog with update of Spring and Summer from Greece By Lorin and John Coming Soon

Blog Recap – Top three Blog Posts Last Month


  1. Winter Worries…Survival mode for Spring
  2. How to split a Beehive
  3. Moving Bees to a Long Bench Hive – Video

Beekeeping News

Beekeepers all over New Zealand are concerned with ‘Cowboy-beekeepers’ arriving in their areas raising concerns about beekeeper hygiene, disease spread and health threats to colonies….
do they really know what they are doing??

James Annabell - Not a Cowboy[/caption]Using GPS, 148 apiaries were plotted and the use of mapping software found 52 per cent were unregistered, AFB national pest management plan manager Rex Baynes, of Wellington, said.

Taranaki beekeepers fight unregistered hives

Your Feedback

Victor Goldsmith – And on the East Coast
Katrina Erickson – You don’t want cowboys lol
Angie Duff – Not isolated to Taranaki. Lots of southern crowds start their season up here in Northland and Chase the Manuka all the way south.

I wonder what happens to the colonies? Or are they just removing honey and killing them???? Perhaps burning the woodware – this may attract attention??

We have some Audio from Duane Mossop the Production Manager at Mossop’s Honey,

Duane Mossop

Managing director Neil Mossop said he would set a $10,000 reward for information leading to the apprehension of those responsible if the business was targeted again.
Mr Mossop thought the raids were being carried out by professionals.
“It’s not just the beekeeper going out and getting a few boxes, it’s organised because they have to have specialised equipment.
“The honey would have to be extracted in a processing plant, the honey would have to be packaged and sold.”

Beehive thefts hit Tauranga company – Bay of Plenty Times

A keen eyed Police officer “Andrew Graham” spotted some discarded Beehive parts along the road and knew something was up. These were tracked down to beehives stolen from Beagle’s Bees.

A police officer whose father keeps bees knew something was amiss when he came across some broken hives on the side of the road.

ID marks give clues after hive raiders flee – Hawkes Bay Today – Hawke’s Bay Today News

Your Feedback

Lance Millward – Avocados and now honey. It used to be banks being robbed but now it is produce…

ID marks give clues

Awesome article about catching these thieving mongrels…well done and you can keep your eye out if you see the same kind of beehaviour. 65 Hives were stolen from the Kai Iwi area.

Police said reported beehive thefts in the Central Districts had been increasing, and it was a timely reminder for people to report any suspicious behaviour involving hives.
Thieves were likely to strike at night, when bees had returned to their hives and the chance of getting caught was lower. Beekeepers, on the other hand, tended to shift hives just before dawn and after dusk.

Two arrested after being caught with 65 stolen bee hives

Your Feedback

Karen Morse – Now that’s a real sting operation! lol

David Hosking – Good

Grant Murfitt – With the inherited value of hives placing electronic tracks shouldn’t be far from our minds..for those that are technically mind it’s a venture for someone.

VernSue Bahr – Good job. Hope they go to jail. Stealing someone’s livelihood. Dropping hives, bees dying. Blinking dreadful.

Noodle Paul – Well that’s a start. Some lowlife tried to steal some of my hives last week but dropped them at a locked gate.

Paulo Jmd Silva – Bastards, they don’t just steal our boxes but also our hard work and our hopes for the future.

Eugene Opai – Not such a sweet getaway then…baaahaahahahahaha

Moo Scotting – Good stuff

Annette Conroy – That was a sharp bee hive sting

Tee Manks – What do they do with them why they steal them?

Jude Purenti – Yes Great news…

Heleena Tamihana – Mongrels ?

TeTauru Pihama – Nah rake that! Good job!

Chris Brittain – Hope they get stung by the law

Tehau Herbert – Name & shame them ?

Dave And-Jude – Good job. Mongrels!

small country school

Inspiration from this article and what a fabulous way to engage the community from school kids and everyone is reaping the rewards….read more about this interesting project.

Two years ago, Hukerenui School had a block of land that wasn’t being well used. Much of the area was out of bounds for the children and the school’s caretaker was spending hours mowing all the excess grassy space.
That’s when a group of Year 6 students had a brainstorming session and came up with a variety of agricultural and horticultural projects which would make best use of the land and provide real-life learning opportunities for the entire school……………..

How this small country school is turning a profit from the land

Your Feedback

Shirley McEntee – Great post thanks Grant!
Rhonda Glass – This is awesome. Well done!!!

We love our bees and our other pets…so it’s best to understand the risks of a sting to your pets… So this article has some ideas for you to think about

What To Do If A Bee Stings Your Dog Or Cat“It is possible for a pet to go into anaphylactic shock resulting from a bee sting, so it’s important to get them treated as soon as possible,” Loftin says.

What To Do If A Bee Stings Your Dog Or Cat

What is a life-hack?? …well Hillary – you know – the girl next door ….shares this article which will amuse

Yet, for some reason, no one has written about beekeeping lifehacks! A community rife with tinkerers and inventors, beekeepers are coming up with tips and tricks every day, and it’s high time we get them out there. Below is Part I of a two-part series of Girl Next Door Honey beekeeping hacks. You’re invited to share your own hacks in the comments section, and we might include them in Part 2!

15 Lifehacks for Beekeepers

Well It’s a start……

People are using Neonicotinoids to control chafer beetles in their lawns, this class of pesticides has been banned on the island. The Ban started in 26 July 2016. They are instead, opting for natural pest controls.

Also “Minnesota sets broadest U.S. limits on chemicals blamed for bee declines”

Vancouver city council has voted unanimously to ban neonicotinoids, a group of pesticides believed to contribute to bee mortality.

Vancouver bans bee-killing pesticide

Vancouver bans bee-killing pesticide

Your Feedback

Margaret’s feedback – Auckland Council – maybe it’s time you woke-up !!

Questions from you

Question from Gordon in Dannevirke

QuestionHi Gary and Margaret,
I understand that there are new regulations on spinning ones honey at home. As in a floor tiled and lights with covers etc.
I have looked up on the net as much as I could but it’s still somewhat confusing. Do you have any clear information as to these new requirements. If so, I think it may be of interest to all our friends in the Kiwimana group especially if you could include it in a podcast or newsletter.
Thanks for all your previous info and advice, I’m sure it will help so many newcomers to the fold.
Regards Gordon (Makotuku Dannevirke)

How to split a hive and make a new Nuc – Deidre from Queensland, Australia

We have a great article HERE

What is a certified beekeeper in New Zealand – Elijah from Auckland, NZ

Well Telford run course, but I guess a certified Beekeeper is someone that has passed DECA. This enables them to be able to sign off disease inspections for American Foul Brood (AFB)

How good are electric uncapping knives? – Barb from New York, USA

There are great, it makes it much easier to remove the wax cappings from honey frames. To be honest I have never used a manual one.

You can check out our Uncapping Knives here:-

If you have a question, email us at [email protected] and the team at kiwimana will do our best to answer it. Or visit our speakpipe page HERE

Random Review

As a small thank you we randomly select one product review each month. The winner will receive a $30 kiwimana gift certificate. Get in touch within 2 weeks of the podcast release date to claim your prize.

This week’s winning review was:-

(You will have to listen to the show)

You will need to claim your prize before 21 September 2016 8 PM.

Feedback from You

Hi G&M it’s strange to hear you talk about preparing for spring when we are in the middle of a honey flow at the moment it’s looking good, just to go off in a tangent we have, well me personally, an enormous number of calls for bumblebees, so much talk about their decline but this year is the very opposite, more calls for bumbles than honey bees.
Graham’s Gizmo.

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