We have not yet met all together in 2018 at Eythorne after last month’s washout.
Hopefully this month will have kinder weather.
The rape flowers are fading now, washed away in heavy rains, so extract the honey as soon as you can, it quickly sets hard in the combs.
After last month’s request for people needing swarms to come forward, I have a list of 10 or so members who need bees to replace their losses. One member has lost every colony, from 2 different sites.
So collecting swarms is going to be vital.
Remember if you have signed up to collect swarms then please do go when contacted, or ring me to organize someone else.
If you don’t need more bees there are folk who do!
DDBKA members have priority, so let me know asap if you have a box of bees to spare!
Having said all that my phone has only rung once so far…………
As beekeepers we need to be aware of how to prevent swarms, it is not a matter of just destroying Q cells, you will be sure to miss one & they will certainly try again.
If you see Q cells, first make sure the Q is still there & find a way to separate her from the colony in an artificial swarm or nuc box. NUC: Take her & the frame she is on, add extra frames of brood, food & foundation, shake in some extra bees too. The bees remaining in the brood box will create a new queen in 2/3 weeks. Some beekeepers don’t have enough spare equipment – if you have hives then you will need a couple of nuc boxes to accommodate the summer increase, it’s what bees do! Our Association has some nuc boxes to lend to members.
If the Q has gone, then you have lost half your colony & possibly caused nuisance to neighbours.
Do regular weekly inspections.
Many thanks to the people who returned their Loan Hives to the apiary whenever the weather let them get through. I hope the new borrowers are now set up & ready to populate their hives with a nuc or swarm.
Wednesday evenings at Eythorne apiaryWednesday sessions at Eythorne at 6:30 pm, for beginners & experienced helpers to provide hands-on experience in a small group are going well, though weather dependent. There are always tasks to do & you will be welcome. Check Dick’s blog at https://eythornebees.wordpress.com
From Pam Hunter, our Link Trustee: Please note that the contact for reporting suspected Asian hornets is firstname.lastname@example.org
Good news - an app has been launched recently -The ‘Asian Hornet Watch’ app is available to download from the Apple and Android app stores.
Martin Smith, Public Affairs Manager at BBKA, said: This new app launched by Defra is a welcome addition to current reporting methods that have enabled beekeepers and members of the public to report possible sightings. The key to containment is catching outbreaks as early as possible and allowing fast tracking of the insects back to their nest. We encourage all our 25,000 beekeepers to install the app and use it if they see what might be an Asian hornet near their hives.
This month’s meeting
- Saturday 26th May at our Eythorne Apiary, at Eythorne Court, Shepherdswell Road, Eythorne CT14 4AD 2:30 p.m. It is along Shepherdswell Road, near Eythorne as you head towards Shepherdswell, on the left, near a black wooden building. We park in the next field. If you are a new member or visitor, please make yourself known, we get busy!
- Mary will work with beginners, & others will demonstrate at the club’s hives, the hives have been assessed as to their quality & temperament by Dick & the Wednesday teams. Jackie & others plan to demonstrate different ways of swarm control, very relevant this month, & also using Apideas to raise new Queens. The progress of colonies can be compared with your own. Bring clean suits, wellies & rubber gloves. We have suits to borrow for beginners & observers. DDBKA has purchased some new smaller sizes for younger visitors.
- Return your Library books & choose another!
- Tea [£1] and raffle as usual. Bring your own mugs!!!!
I hope you will be able to come along.