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Christmas Day Varroa Treat(-ment)

It's Christmas Day and this video shows the Bermondsey Street Bees in Abbey Hive receiving a health-giving anti-varroa treat(-ment).

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“Are Bees Intelligent?”

"Are Bees Intelligent?" A good question. "Yes, in the same way that footballers are, on a football field", was my response.

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Bees’ Eyes

A bee doesn't just have two eyes, like us - it has hundreds. The large, dark ovals on each side of a bee's face contain hundreds of single eyes which act as compound eyes. And bees see colours differently. We base our colour perceptions on red, blue, and green parts of the spectrum, yet bees use a palette of ultraviolet, blue and green and are "colour blind" to red (although they can see red-tinged wavelengths such as orange and yellow). Research suggests that bees' favourite colours are purple, violet and blue (which is just as well, since my basic planting advice for absolute novices is that they can't go too far wrong using these colours for bee-forage!)

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Night Market

A shiver ran down my spine as it occured to me that our stall was precisely on the spot where Bermondsey Abbey had stood, founded just after the Norman Conquest on the site of a 7th Century monastery. That sudden time-shift placed the Bermondsey Street Bees as the inheritors of a 1300-year history of beekeeping in that very place.

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Something In The Air

Bees use smell to broadcast social messages. So as a beekeeper, my sense of smell is an important tool in managing my hives. And it's surely no coincidence that my surname, spelt backwards is: "Nosbig".

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