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Bayer and Syntenga Challenge Pesticide Ban

Posted on Sep 3, 2013 in Bee News, Blog | Comments Off on Bayer and Syntenga Challenge Pesticide Ban

Bayer and Syntenga Challenge Pesticide Ban

Big Business Challenges Europe If you are a beekeeper you will undoubtedly know about the recent temporary ban on Neonictinoid pesticides throughout Europe which comes into effect in December 2013. If you aren’t you have probably heard stories about it on the news, but in short there is building evidence that a group of pesticides called Neonicotinoids (or Neonics for short) are having a negative impact on our pollinators. It appears that proper testing wasn’t done before they went into mass use around 20 years ago and now we are starting to see the ill effects, some people are...

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Runner Beans Not Setting Pods

Posted on Aug 29, 2013 in Blog, Other | 9 comments

Runner Beans Not Setting Pods

The Bees aren’t doing their job properly this year I’ve had a real problem with my runner beans not setting pods this year. I can see the neighbors over the fence and they are just as bad, spoke to a couple of locals and they have the same problem. There are loads of flowers, but the pods just aren’t forming, the flowers just fall off and leave no beans, well, when I say no beans, there are a few, but nothing like the volume there should be. I’ve just been down to pick a few (because that’s all there is!) and the plants are covered in bees, have been watered well...

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New Roof and a Happy Customer

Posted on Aug 19, 2013 in Blog, Equipment | 4 comments

New Roof and a Happy Customer

Aargh The Roof Doesn’t Fit! I’m a bit of a sucker for good customer service so thought this deserved a quick mention. As you probably know by now if you’ve seen this site before, I use a mix of timber and polystyrene hives, although with a bit of experience of both now, I am more inclined to buy polystyrene ones in the future. I went to the Spring Convention this year and bought a few more supers for the Paynes poly hives, they looked slightly darker and they explained that they are now manufacturing using a higher density polystyrene. This is certainly a good thing as far...

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The 2013 Season is Drawing to it’s Conclusion

Posted on Jul 31, 2013 in Blog, Honey, Swarming | Comments Off on The 2013 Season is Drawing to it’s Conclusion

The 2013 Season is Drawing to it’s Conclusion

It seems to have been quite a short beekeeping season here in the UK this year (2013) what with the long winter, although I feel that I’ve achieved quite a lot in a relatively short space of time, The honey will be coming off in the next week or so and then I’m back to starting to prepare colonies for another winter. Winter Losses I got off very light with winter losses last year, the BBKA Winter Survey revealed that people had experienced around 50% winter losses here in the South West and I personally know people who experienced the same volume of colony losses around here, so...

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Directory of UK Honey Suppliers

Posted on Jul 11, 2013 in Blog, Honey | 7 comments

Directory of UK Honey Suppliers

Beekeepers add your details to the Honey Directory I set the honey directory up last year, so that beekeepers had a free place to advertise their honey for sale. Unfortunately what with the weather we had last summer, very few people ended up with much, if any honey to sell. As a result the directory still has around half the categories empty. Each category is a county, so you can imagine there are some big gaps. The site is currently receiving over 2000 visitors a month who arrive here searching for honey related terms (it receives over 8000 visitors a month in total at the moment!), many of...

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Moving Bumblebees

Posted on Jun 24, 2013 in Blog, Other, Swarming | 4 comments

Moving Bumblebees

Before reading this please understand that this post is my account of moving a Bumblebee nest, I am not offering advice on how you can move them yourself, I’m not an expert on Bumblebees and am not qualified to offer advice on them. Although I suppose if you are planning on moving them anyway, this might highlight a few things that you hadn’t considered. I would suggest having a look at the information on the Bumblebee Conservation Trusts website for more information. If however you think you have a swarm of Honey Bees, then please click here for my swarm removal page. Moving A...

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New Bee Suit

Posted on May 22, 2013 in Blog, Equipment | 13 comments

New Bee Suit

Third Beekeeping Suit and Hopefully it’s a Good One This Time! I went to the BBKA Spring Convention in April this year, partly because I wanted to attend some lectures, but mainly because I needed to buy some kit and I wanted to see things in person before parting with my money. I buy frames, hives, foundation and smaller bits and bobs online as the postage is cheaper than actually driving all the way to the suppliers, but I needed a new suit, extractor and a number of other things and it’s the only chance to actually compare products side by side, so although it’s a long...

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UK Government Fails to Support Neonicotinoid Ban

Posted on Apr 29, 2013 in Bee News, Blog | 6 comments

UK Government Fails to Support Neonicotinoid Ban

EU Restricts use of Neonicotinoid Pesticides A vote in Europe today restricted the use of Neonicotinoid pesticides, also known as Neonics. Campaigns had been running to lobby the UK government to vote for a ban, however despite overwhelming evidence that Neonicotinoids do harm bees they abstained, which effectively counted as a vote against the ban. (this is how the voting works) A campaign by Avaaz has helped to bring the situation into the public eye and enabled them to present a petition with almost 3 million signatures to Owen Patterson the Secretary of State for the Environment, along...

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Campaign to Help Bees

Posted on Apr 22, 2013 in Bee News, Blog, Other | 2 comments

Campaign to Help Bees

Friends of the Earth Bee Cause Campaign I’ve just spotted a campaign from Friends of the Earth to help save the bees.  Their Bee Cause campaign enables people to donate money and sign a petition to David Cameron covering several aspects of protecting all species of bees, not just Honey Bees, such as the use of pesticides and availability of suitable habitat and forage. You can find the petition here, so please have a look and sign it. In addition, this poster has been circulating, encouraging people to buy a packet of bee friendly wild flower seeds. It’s done by phone text, so...

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Not Ideal For Bees

Posted on Mar 25, 2013 in Blog, Other | 2 comments

Not Ideal For Bees

Is Winter Ever Going to End!?! So far I’ve managed to not complain about the weather too much, but really enough’s enough. I’ve got windowsills full of seedlings going leggy now because they cant go out in the greenhouse yet and the dogs must be getting fed up with their walks being cut short because it’s just too cold to stay out for very long. It was this time last year that we were having a mini heat wave, OK it didn’t last quite up until Easter but I do remember being out in short sleeves on several occasions and not having to think too much about when would...

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