About our Club‎ > ‎

Home of the Christchurch Hobbyist Beekeepers' Club

 Working Bee this Sat 13th July 2019 Gordon Nairn Thanks to all who helped last Sat. Great to have your support.
This week we'll: (weather permitting)

Fill holes with dirt. Plant grass seed.

Hoe the heck out of the flower beds.
Build a timber wall inside the container with a door.
Seal water tight the ranchslider flashings.
If you want to help please let me know Gordon 0275 389 568.


AGM and Honey Show 2019
and the nominations application can be sent to the club secretary chchbeekeepers@gmail.com

Christchurch Hobbyist Beekeepers Honey Show

The 2019 Honey Show will be held at the AGM, so do come along and enter

your hive products.

We have a wide range of bee products, beekeeping inventions, and photos.

All classes are for hobbyists with less than 40 hives. A shield is awarded to the

entrant with the most points overall and a novice shield is awarded to a first or

second year beekeeper. (This must be stated at the time).

General Rules:

• Members may only have one entry per class. If required, guidance will be given as to

which class your entry should be exhibited in. The judges decision will be final.

• Exhibits must be delivered at least 10 minutes prior to the start of the judging.

• Liquid and creamed honey and pollen must be in standard 500 gm square or round

plastic jars with white lids.

• No labels on jars.

• Only exhibits from Financial members will be accepted.

• Write your initials (which may be on a small sticky label) on the BASE of the exhibit.


1. Dark honey creamed

2. Dark honey liquid

3. Light honey creamed

4. Light honey liquid

5. A cut, boxed section of wooden or plastic foundation capped honey

6. Wax blocks 500 gm minimum weight

7. Mead 750 ml clear glass bottle

8. Pollen 500 gm square "round"

9. Edible items that include products from the hive (could include honey cake,

propolis lozenges etc)

10. Non edible bee related crafts (e.g. candles, bee jewelry etc)

11. No 8 Wire class - inventions and gadgets

12. Bee related photograph which must be a photo taken by yourself

Details of each class

1 & 2. Dark honey or light creamed honey The entrant is to decide which class to enter.

The judge will take notice of flavour, colour, fineness of grain and freedom from foreign

material. Please remember to obtain standard show jars. The reason for this uniformity

is that different types of jars have varying light densities depending on the thickness of

the glass.

3 & 4. Liquid honey light or dark same criteria as above.

5. Sections wooden or plastic. Points awarded for flavour, comple-tion of capping and

freedom from travel stains. Entrants are urged to present their exhibits to the best

advantage. E.g. propolis should be removed and the woodwork cleaned by sanding or

other means. Exhibits to be in clear plastic comb section boxes. Plastic rounds or squares

must have clear plastic covers.

6. Wax -each exhibit must be at least 500gms in weight and from this season. It must be

presented as tipped from the mould; points will be lost for chipping or scraping. The

Judge will look for colour, texture and purity. No restriction as to the shape of the

mould. Entrants are advised not to heat wax in iron or enamel containers as this can

discolour the wax, for prefer-ence use an aluminium container. Do not overheat the wax;

strain through stocking or similar; cool very slowly as this makes for uniformity of

texture and freedom from cracking. Avoid propolis as this tends to darken the wax. Pure

bees wax only to be used. One tea-spoon of vinegar helps to clarify wax.

7. Mead 750 ml clear glass bottle with removable cork or screw top.

8. Pollen must be dried with debris removed.

9. Baked goods -minimum of 1 plate of baked goods or sufficient other edible product

for the judges to assess adequately.

10. Bee related products , must be hand-crafted -can be made of any material, or art

work, e.g. poster, short story, poem.

11. Inventions and gadgets to be used in relation to beekeeping.

12. Photographs must be at least A5 in size, unframed, colour or mono.

Field Days finished for this season
Winter get together on Sun 9 June, 1-4pm for afternoon tea (please bring a plate)  at Ara in the hospitality building for a catch up and to share more about the container plans at the hive site, to discuss beekeeping issues nationally and globally and share a movie.


Some news from the USA

The Environmental Protection Agency is pulling from the market a dozen products containing pesticides known to be toxic to a linchpin of the U.S. food system — the honeybee.

The agency announced Monday it has canceled the registrations of 12 pest-killing products with compounds belonging to a class of chemicals known as neonicotinoids, as part of a legal settlement.

For years, beekeepers and wildlife conversationalists alike have voiced concern that the widespread use of neonics, as the chemicals are commonly called, is imperiling wild and domesticated bees crucial to pollinating commercial fruit, nut and vegetable crops.

The Trump administration's action was welcome news to some environmentalists. “Certainly we have a ways to go,” said George Kimbrell, legal director at the nonprofit advocacy group Center for Food Safety, whose lawsuit prompted the EPA’s action. “But it's an important first step in acknowledging the harm they cause.”

The EPA has pulled other neonics from market before, agency spokesman John Konkus said in an email. But close observers of the agency say such actions are rare.

“For the EPA to pull a previously registered pesticide is a pretty major step,” said Mark Winston, a professor of apiculture and social insects at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, B.C. “It’s not something they do very often.”

The decision follows five years of litigation in which the beekeepers and environmentalists pressed the agency to mount a response to the use of neonics as regulators in Europe and Canada have taken steps toward banning the chemicals.

Finally, at the end of 2018, three agribusinesses — Bayer, Syngenta and Valent — agreed to let the EPA pull from shelves the 12 pesticide products used by growers ranging from large-scale agricultural businesses to home gardeners. The legal settlement also compels the EPA to analyze the impacts of the entire neonic class on endangered species.

Two of the pesticide makers, Bayer and Valent, say their products are tested and safe to use, noting that the environmentalists and beekeepers won their case on the technical grounds that the EPA did not follow the right steps under the Endangered Species Act when registering their products.

“Neonicotinoids are rigorously tested before going to market to ensure they can be used safely and effectively,” said Steve Tatum, a spokesman for Valent, which makes four of the delisted products.

Bayer noted its two products targeted by the EPA action are not sold in the United States. But spokesman Darren Wallis added: “Growers rely on these critical pest-management tools because of their performance against destructive pests, as well as their favorable human and environmental safety profile.”

Concern over neonics has grown since 2006, when beekeepers first started witnessing the sudden and mysterious collapse of honeybee hives across the nation.

Researchers have shown the compounds to be harmful to bees in laboratory tests. But they have had less luck pinning down the pesticides’ effects on beekeepers’ colonies when they go about their work pollinating apple orchards and other farms.

In his second term Barack Obama, who had earlier approved installing a beehive on the South Lawn of the White House, launched an initiative to promote the health of honeybees and other pollinators.

But Rebecca Riley, legal director of the nature program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said that the agency has failed often in the past to adequately consider the potential impact of its pesticide approvals on endangered animals — something every federal agency is supposed to do.

“EPA for years has been ignoring this requirement of the law,” she said.

That has led to a number of lawsuits, such as one the NRDC filed in 2017, asking a federal court to vacate the registrations of nearly 100 products that contain one of several insecticides that are harmful to various bees, butterflies, birds and insects. That case remains unresolved, even as the separate Center for Food Safety case led EPA to pull some pesticides from the market.

“This is a win for both the rule of law and also for bees, birds and other wildlife impacted by these pesticides,” Riley said of the latest case. “But the reality is there are hundreds of pesticide products on the market. So, this is important … but it does not get rid of the danger.”

Brady Dennis contributed to this report.

SUBS for 2020 to June 2020 $40.00 per family.

Payment can be posted to Kerry at 28 Fairway Drive, Shirley. Also online is ok too.
How to join


Go to   http://www.afb.org.nz/beekeeping-courses  for a list of centres and dates where courses are to be held.  At the bottom of this list is an application form.

Any queries should be directed to Janette Gwilliam at  training@afb.org.nz  or phone  045660773

Beekeeper Registration

ARE YOU REGISTERED,  IF NOT WHY NOT ,  IF YOU HAVE A HIVE YOU MUST BE REGISTERED,  This is all part of bee keeping and helping to control AFB so please do your bit for the good of our hobby and those precious wee fuzzy bees!!!!!!!

Directions to Club Site (Click here)

Beekeeper related articles

Christchurch Bee Stories and Tips (looking for article writers) at http://chchbeekeepers.blogspot.co.nz/

Welcome to the Christchurch Hobbyist Beekeepers' Club 

Based in the beautiful Garden City of Christchurch on the South Island of New Zealand, our club has over 160 active members and has been supporting local beekeepers for over thirty years.

The purpose of our club is to support beekeeping in Christchurch, for both professional and hobbyist beekeepers.  Beekeeping is becoming ever more popular and our club is here to help people learn about bees, how to keep them and how to produce bee products.  Of course, that includes honey, one of the purest foods and the only food produced by insects.

Our club members include individuals and families and we welcome contact from anyone with an interest in bees.  It doesn't matter if you just want to know more, if you think you might like to become a beekeeper or if you already have some hives; our club is the place for you.

We believe that the 
best way to learn is by doing!  We have a regular programme of Field Days where more experienced hive masters demonstrate some of the skills and techniques used in beekeeping today.  Club members are encouraged to get involved and play an active role, whether by helping to set up, lifting boxes of honey, lighting the smokers or brewing the tea. 

Although we are a volunteer organization, we have an elected Committee with formal roles such as President, Secretary and Treasurer as you would expect.  All of our Committee members are volunteers and we actively encourage every member to play an active role in making the Club a success. 

You will learn more about our Club and the opportunities we offer as you travel through the rest of our website.  In the meantime, if you have any questions or feel that you would like to know more about what the Club can do for you, please send an email to chch.beekeepers@gmail.com.  Better still, come along to our next Field Day and have a taste of locally produced gold.

We look forwards to seeing you there!

Photos on our web site are credit to David Alexander where marked