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MedusA

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Everything posted by MedusA

  1. MedusA

    Weird "bee"-haviour

    They have gone back in the hive now and are taking some feed. I don't think it will be enough though, so may put some fondant on. I could try putting them back in the nuc and overwintering in that. It may be worth trying. Thanks for the advice.
  2. Just wanted to add my condolences to the rest, Lynny. Your Mum sounds a wonderful lady and I'm sure she will be greatly missed. Take comfort in knowing you did all you could to make her life as happy as possible and to make her feel cherished. You are a credit to her. *hugs* I think we can all feel guilty at times for not showing how much we value those close to us. I'm glad you had the opportunity to show your Mum just how much she meant to you.
  3. Speaking as someone who has to read every single label when shopping due to vegetarianism and food allergies, I can sympathise. I am appalled at the "washing of hands" response from the RSPCA and would certainly pursue them on this. I'll also be interested to hear what Sainsbury's have to say. Please keep us posted, Hazel.
  4. I'm in the "buy things throughout the year and stash them away" camp. It's like a mini Christmas in early December when I get out all the things that I've bought so far to start wrapping them. There are always some things I've completely forgotten I've bought and I often end up with too many things for one person, so I have to "carry some of them over" until their birthday! When can we start using our Christmas avatars?
  5. Yes, thanks for the update, Shirl. I too remember the original post and was also shocked at how long ago it was. It must be a relief to know the care home have at last apologised. Whilst it's understandable that due to human error mistakes do happen, it is so frustrating when they then deny it! Good for you for persuing the issue to a satisfactory conclusion. Please accept my best wishes for you, Tom and your family. *hugs*
  6. MedusA

    Weird "bee"-haviour

    Thanks Daphne, it's good to know that this isn't totally unique behaviour. This "swarm" were very calm and we didn't need to smoke them at all. There were a few fliers when we brushed them into the box but no attempts to sting. The only other thing I can think of is to maybe pour some syrup onto the empty combs to encourage them. There are small patches of brood and stores but they are very small indeed. I have very little hope for this colony but I'm not giving up on them just yet!
  7. One of our allotment colonies is behaving weirdly and I'd appreciate some advice. It was a nuc swarm earlier this year and were bursting at the seams so we moved them up to a full hive just over 2 months ago. Then the queen went off lay for weeks but started up again so we thought all was well and they would build up enough to survive winter. We put our varroa treatment on and started feeding for all the allotment colonies a few weeks back. All seemed OK until Sunday when we noticed what looked like a swarm clustered on the front of this hive just below the roof. We got the "swarm" in a box and decided we'd try and unite it with the colony in the hive to bump up the numbers. However, when we opened the hive it was virtually empty - as in hardly any bees, brood or stores! Anyway, we concluded that the swarm must be the bees from that hive and put them back in, including the queen. We put a QE under the brood box to try and prevent her escaping. They've got feed on but 3 days later there is still a persistent, if smaller, cluster back out on the front. I'm at a loss as to what else we could do for them. One of the experienced beeks at our BKA says he can't think of anything else to do, but if there isn't brood or stores they will be doomed, which is what I thought he'd say. It's such a pity as they seemed such a promising colony at nuc level. That's beekeeping for you. Never a dull moment.
  8. What gorgeous girlies, Snowy. I love the pic of them all trying to balance on the chair.
  9. OMG Tasha! Shame on me, but have only just caught this thread. I am so jealous. I had no idea that Wernlas were selling up or I'd have been there like a shot. I bought Muggle and Squib, my Cuckoo and Partridge Silkies from there nearly 4 years ago (still going strong I'm happy to say). Sad that they've closed. I can't even begin to imagine unloading all those chooks from a hatchback. Well done anyway.
  10. MedusA

    Branch Honey Show

    Update, following the County Honey Show: My cake was a disaster. A bit undercooked so naturally didn't get anything. My rather rubbish wax block got a Very Highly Commended in the novice wax class. My honey (which won First in the Novice Honey at the Branch Show) got 2nd Prize! Really chuffed about that.
  11. My thoughts too. I wouldn't worry too much unless it gets worse.
  12. This is a fabulous thread! I love CoF stories and Xena seems like a real character.
  13. So sorry to hear about Kitty, but you've done the right thing. RIP little chook. I love Silkies. They are such characters. I am really dreading losing my two at some point. They are my favourites.
  14. I've had my Suffolk Noir, Treacle for over 4 years from POL so she is 4 1/2 now and still going strong. I think the Black Rock type hybrids tend to live longer. I agree with what others have said about "gingers". I haven't had one live to be older than 3. I'm guessing they are "programmed" to live shorter but more productive (eggs, that is) lives. Pure breeds do tend to live longer as they don't lay as prolifically. That said, I lost one of my Araucanas earlier this year and she was only 3. Enjoy what time you have with your girl. If she's had a good life what more could a hen want?
  15. Oo er! I think there may have been an attempt at a strangled cock-a-doodle-doo this morning. Not a peep since though. I'm watching (and listening) very closely. I'm getting paranoid about it.
  16. In my limited experience this is a common reaction to varroa treatment. Mine were the same with Apiguard too. They just need time to get used to the smell of the Thymol. I now use Api Life Var as I find it cleaner and more convenient to use than Apiguard. It does the job anyway. My advice would be to persevere. I believe it is important to complete any form of treatment to avoid building resistance. Happy beekeeping!
  17. MedusA

    Branch Honey Show

    I'm pretty sure veg and flower shows use the same colour code, Daphne. Not sure about livestock though.
  18. MedusA

    Branch Honey Show

    Yes. Olly's right. Our branch qualifies you as a "novice" if you haven't won more that 3 Firsts at any honey show. This was my second win in the novice honey class. I am entering the novice honey, novice wax block and honey cake at the Warwickshire County Honey Show this Saturday at Hatton Country World. I won 50p prize money, a First Prize certificate, and a ticket for 2 to the National Honey Show. I won't be able to go though as I'm already booked that weekend. Edited to add pics: Prize winning honey And my "congealed volcano" of a honey cake
  19. I really hope not Redwing and Sam as I live in a built up area. The hackle feathers are rounded not pointy and there are no signs of spurs. I'm remaining positive and calling her a she....for now.
  20. MedusA

    Branch Honey Show

    I'm really chuffed because I won another novice class First prize at this year's Branch Honey Show. OH says I must be doing something right then. DD says I now need to have a go up against the big boys and girls. On the other hand my honey cake looked like a congealed volcano. Still tastes nice though. I got to act as steward for the judge this year. The process of judging is fascinating and I felt honoured to be doing it. I don't think serious competition is for me though. There is too much to think about.
  21. Aaaaaaaaaaaw! How gorgeous are they? I love Silkies. My Muggle and Squib are always a big hit at our allotment fairs.
  22. A few weeks ago DD found an injured chicken outside her house and gave me a call. It looked as though she'd been attacked by a fox but somehow escaped. She had a wound on her chest so I got her to the vet and after a course of antibiotics she's made a full recovery and is now integrated into my flock. Initially we named her Lucky but then, as she was bitten on the night of the full moon, we changed it to Lupin (HP reference). She has lovely yellow legs and a berry comb, but hasn't laid yet. She has gorgeous glossy plumage. Can anybody tell me what breed she might be? She looks a bit like my Black Rock but she's much smaller and I think she might be a pure breed. She has pretty lacing on her feathers.
  23. She is a bit OTT in her response. I guess it's the nerves. Sent it to DD who is getting married next April.
  24. Yep. That's the one I meant.

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