Entries from 2020

New Year's Day 2020: Beekeeping 2020
Now we're just a few hours into a new decade, it's time for one of those new year looking-ahead posts. But first, looking back. I've really enjoyed beekeeping this year — it's gone better than I ever could have expected given how late in the season our swarms were. …
Tuesday, 7th January 2020
Today was a beautifully mild day. With the temperature at 13°C, a few of the bees were buzzing about, and I only needed a t-shirt under my bee suit. The boggy ground had drained somewhat, and the rain held off, despite heavy, pendulous clouds over the Mendips. …
Thursday, 9th January 2020: Choosing colours
It has been decided by Ⓑ and Ⓒ that Bluebell will be the stain used for Colony Four, with Honeysuckle as the second choice.
Friday, 10th January 2020: Time to sublime
It was sunny and bright this afternoon, as well as being a bit cooler than it has been lately. Most beekeepers get their oxalic acid treatments done in late December, and it was high time that we got ours done. …
Friday, 24th January 2020: Food delivery
It's been exactly a month since I had last fed Colony 1, so I thought I'd go for a walk down to the apiary to see whether they needed a top-up. They had showed little interest in the Candipolline Gold, but about two-thirds of the Fondabee had gone, so I replaced it with a new 1kg bag. …
Monday, 27th January 2020: Antiproliferation
I'm having a bit of a chuck-out this week, part of which has involved finding a dedicated place in the house for my beekeeping things. In doing so, it's struck me how much of this stuff I seem to have. …
Friday, 14th February 2020: There's golden pollen in them thar hills
It had been a few weeks since we'd last checked on the bees, and a day-long break in the rain and cold between Storm Ciara and Storm Dennis meant that we had a chance to go and see them. The news is good. …
Wednesday, 19th February 2020: A trip to Devon
A couple of days ago my dad, Ⓑ and I went for a bee-themed day out together. The morning was spent learning about honey at the Quince Honey Farm in South Molton, and the last hour in the afternoon at the adjacent Thornes of Devon. …
Friday, 21st February 2020: Intruder alert
After another week of rain, this afternoon was unusally warm — between 11°C and 12°C, if a little on the windy side. I opened up the hives to take samples for tomorrow's pollen microscopy workshop at the local beekeepers' association. …
Saturday, 22nd February 2020: Melissopalynology
Yesterday's workshop was an introduction to the study of pollen in honey. In particular, we were learning how to go from having a small pot of honey to a slide which can be looked at through a microscope. …
Vernal Equinox 2020
While in the human world food supply lines are beginning to creak, Colony 1 has no such worries. I popped down there today and took two eaten-clean bags, one Candipolline and one Fondabee. …
Tuesday, 24th March 2020: Visiting hives during the COVID-19 pandemic
Interestingly, the BBKA's Chair's position on beekeeping during the COVID-19 pandemic is that bees are livestock and should be tended. …
Wednesday, 25th March 2020: Defra guidance on beekeeping during the COVID-19 pandemic
Continuing from yesterday's post, the statement from the Chair of the BBKA is now supported by a document from the National Bee Unit outlining official guidance from Defra, the Scottish Government and the Welsh Government on the care of honey bee colonies during the COVID-19 pandemic. …
Saturday, 28th March 2020: Bee counter
A few days ago, Tiff sent me details of a beekeeping electronics project, Easy Bee Counter (also on Instructables). …