Tuesday, 17 March 2015

Newsletter March 2015

Dear Beekeeper

Last month was so busy; the successful Bee Improvement day, which gathered 95 beekeepers from a wide area, Roger Patterson impressed on us that we must: Select, Breed, Cull without sentimentality to achieve the best bees.

Only breed from what he described as your “A” colonies, leave the “B” ones as reserve. Have a “support” colony to draw from when in need of drawn frames, bees, food etc.

Then the quiz, a cheerful affair thanks to Dougal’s varied questions. 6 tables turned out, Allyn Thomas kept a running total for each group up on the screen & Pam collected the answer sheets. Thank goodness for a tea break in the middle! Eventually The Improvers team from Dover just won, many thanks to Thanet BKA for putting up a team and racking their brains with the rest of us.

March is a chilly disappointment so far, bees not flying some days, & I have not yet opened any hives. They seem busy, small amounts of pollen are being collected, but March & April are forecast to have below average temperatures. So it may be a case of grabbing your first inspection of 2015 on one of the few pleasant days. Mouse guards can be taken off, also woodpecker protection.

Get supers ready for the warmth that is bound to come.

Some sad news.
Tony Christian, our former Librarian, died on February 28th. Some of you will remember him from the 2013 Basic study group. His funeral is at Barham Crematorium on March 26th, 1:20 pm.

You may have seen in the press lots of interest in an Australian invention, the Flow hive.
This link should take you there. http://www.honeyflow.com
It all looks so easy……………………………
Just for Langstroth hives apparently.

W Sussex beekeepers are holding their annual market & auction of bees & equipment on April 25th at Pulborough. Details at westsussexbeekeepers.org.uk

Good luck to all sitting Module exams on March 21st.


Best wishes

Maggie

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