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Posts tagged ‘swarm’

Bret’s Bajan Bees

On a previous visit to Barbados, I had met Ben The Bajan Beekeeper. I subsequently received an invitation from one of Ben's fellow beekeepers, Bret Tujela, to visit his Bajan Bees when I was next on the island. Here's the story of Bret's Bajan Bees.

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The Sawh Dynasty

The Sawh Dynasty. Maff spotted the sign, on the outskirts of Bridgetown, Barbados: "Sawh's Bee Hiving Enterprise - we specialize in bee hive removal. 100% pure Honey. 100% pure Bajan." It was to lead to quite an adventure.

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Swarm

It's the summer solstice. Today is the longest day of the year with 16 hours, 38 minutes and 19 seconds of daylight in London. It's also the day when Queen bees hit their peak daily laying rate of over 2,000 eggs a day. So it's a good time of year to consider the dark side of beekeeping: the swarm.

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Three Feet Or Three Miles

The golden rule of beekeeping is: “Three feet or three miles”. It sounds enigmatic until it is revealed as the shorthand version of an exhortation to the beekeeping faithful that: “Thou shalt not move a bee-hive more than three feet, nay, verily, nor less than three miles. No way. Or else". Here's why...

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Do Bees Hibernate ?

As winter takes hold, bees form their cluster: a gently dynamic, oval mass in the middle of the brood box. A cluster is quite hard to visualise, though, so It really made my day when I realised that a swarm of bees is just a naked cluster !

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The Devil’s In The Detail

In the wake of the BBKA's 2014 Honey Yields Report, here's my call to action for urban beekeepers - let’s get more forage in the ground !

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2014’s “Best Honey Crop In 5 Years”

BBKA Reports "Best Honey Crop In 5 Years". This is clearly good news - but 2014's yield is still 20% below historic averages. The essential message for urban beekeepers, not mentioned in this report, is clearly: "Plant More Forage !"

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Swarm – Show And Tell

Terror is terror. Abrupt and intense. Suddenly shunted into your face, indifferent to your rapt fear. Like a swarm of bees, ancient and implacable: 20,000 spirographing projectiles ripping the air, weaponed with venom. In reality, though, a bee-swarm is as terrible as a Tunnock’s Teacake, as pugnacious as Christmas Puddings.

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Running On Empty

I’ve run out of beekeeping kit. I started this year with 3 hives on my roof. Today there are 8. Only a National nuc box and a single Keiler breeding nuc remain in reserve. That’s the beekeeping equivalent of the small change down the back of your sofa.

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In The Apiary : Early April : Queen Cups

Welcome to the first Bermondsey Street Apiary report of 2014. Executive summary: the bees are in great shape. So much so that, in early April, I found some Queen Cups. Half-empty or half-full, Queen Cups are fundamentally important to successful beekeeping.

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