Tips for the Month:

  • Keep up weekly inspections to check for queen cells. Even if you have done a swarm prevention or had a swarm leave your hive, if the colony builds up strongly there may still be another swarm.

  • After selecting a good sealed queen cell make sure you check all the frames by shaking the bees off to ensure you have not left any queen cells - emergency queen cells are hard to spot. Don’t shake the frame with the chosen queen cell - brush the bees off.

  • If your bees have not swarmed but your queen is aging, consider making up a nuc with the old queen and forcing the bees in the old hive to make queen cells and produce a new queen.

  • Do not disturb the nuc or colony where a new queen is being produced for at least 3 weeks from the date you left a sealed queen cell. It can sometimes take longer before the new queen starts laying.

  • Continue to put on extra supers when ¾ of frames are covered by bees.

  • If your bees are near oilseed rape remove supers once they have been sealed and extract immediately before it crystallises.

  • Make sure colonies have sufficient stores - there is a lot of brood to feed at this time of year. If there are no supers on the hive make sure there are at least 2 frames of stores


Beebase News Web feed
  • Swarms of honeybees
    29 May 2019
    The National Bee Unit has been receiving a large amount of calls regarding honey bee swarms. Please note that we do not deal with swarms, however, you may find the following advice useful in re-directing your enquiry:

    First of all it is important to establish what sort of insect it is. Usually, beekeepers are only willing to assist with honey bees. The British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) website holds list of volunteer Swarm Collectors and has a very useful identification and guidance page.
  • E-Learning Module - Technical Issues
    27 May 2019
    Please note we are experiencing technical issues with our online e-learning courses when using Internet Explorer.

    This has been reported to IT and is under investigation.

    Please accept our apologies for this, in the meantime, the courses can be still be accessed using Chrome or FireFox.
  • RESOLVED: Email Issues
    23 May 2019
    *** RESOLVED ***

    Updated: 28/05/2019 - This issue is now resolved.

    Please be aware we are currently experiencing issues with emails to

    In the interim, please direct email correspondence to

    We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.