Category Archives: News – national

Summer activities for everyone

Now that the sunshine and nectar flow seem to be established, and that long-lasting cold NE wind seems finally to have gone, most people’s colonies seem to be settling down. Our branch meeting last Saturday (27 June) was well attended and had a variety of activities for people to take part in. Those stalwarts about to take the Basic Assessment were busy practising hive inspections, another group were getting a (gentle) grip on how to mark queens by practising on drones, while others again were discussing the proper siting of a new swarm in a nuc, with a view to it settling down happily. It was a good meeting and our usual raffle raised some more money for branch funds, helped by the goodwill of those donating the prizes.

A reminder now that our ‘Honeybee Day’ takes place at the Horsebridge Centre in Whitstable this coming Saturday, from 11 am to 3 pm. Why not come along to support the branch, answer questions from the public, and try some of the newly-extracted branch honey.

Finally, three more pieces of information published recently (and that can be found also on our Facebook page at ):


The Bee Brief (16 December 2014)

Following on from the National Honey Show, last month, four of the lectures recorded over the event have so far gone up on The Honey Show’s YouTube channel and are well worth watching. See It is intended that all of this year’s lectures will be up there soon.

Our Whitstable & Herne Bay Beekeepers’ branch has a stall at Macknade Fine Foods’ late opening (till 8 pm) this coming Thursday, 18th December. Why not come along and say hello to Keith and Tilly who will be running our stall, support the branch, and stock up on a few of Macknade’s comestibles at the same time?

BeeCraft will be holding another of their Google Hangouts (online webinars) this Wednesday, 17th December, starting at 8 pm. It’s not difficult to take part (or just to watch/listen) and the whole thing is explained here: ¬†Tomorrow’s session is all about ‘products of the hive other than honey’. If you’d like to send in a question ahead of the event, the link above has details of how to do so.

Propolis as a cure for baldness – ?
Well, it’s useful for lots of other things, so why not this as well.

Thorne’s Winter Sale will start on the 3rd of January in 2015. Keep an eye on this page of their website for more details over the next couple of weeks – . This is always a very popular event and things go fairly fast.



National Pollination Strategy published

DEFRA has this week published its’ new ‘National Pollination Strategy’ ( It will be interesting to see how this develops, given that so much of it seems to depend on voluntary actions. However, it’s a start, at least.

Some of the responses and comments so far:


Bumblebee Conservation Trust

Friends of the Earth

National Farmers’ Union


The Bee Brief (2 October 2014 )

Beekeeping in some different parts of the UK:

Writing about beekeeping in London –

Beeks in Wales –

A beekeeping project in West Sussex –

Solar farms and how they can help bees and other pollinators –

And Рthe very worrying news about Small Hive Beetle being found at an increasing number of apiaries in Italy:  Since that article was published on BeeBase, SHB has apparently been found on several more sites in the region.

The Bee Brief (7-9-14)

Some of the online information and reports about bees and beekeeping in the last week.

A short course from the Natural Beekeeping Trust on ‘Living in Harmony with Bees’ ( 16 September)

Bumblebees poisoned by neonics-

The NBT’s ‘Sun Hives’ seem to be growing in popularity. It’s certainly an interesting shape –

A really good site for bee anatomy. With thanks to Julian King for posting the link to this on the BBKA Facebook page.

An interesting account of learning to rear queens

A fascinating website on how to do all sorts of bee-related things, including this useful checklist of things to consider when putting entries in honey shows:

This is just so sad – but why did no-one ask farmers beforehand what their reaction was likely to be?

The Bee Brief (31-8-14)

At the end of summer most beekeepers are considering the amount of stores their colonies will need to overwinter safely. It’s never an exact science, but there are factors that everyone should consider. This post from the US considers a variety of issues that we can translate to our own locality.

An interesting area of research, looking to see when drones start to be laid.

Some good graphics on this site, set up for the recent ‘Hive Alive’ series.

A massive store of useful information.

A report on an interesting study, in France, looking at the numbers of wild bees (all species) in urban areas and how important such habitats may be.