Tips for the Month:

  • Continue to monitor stores on all colonies every few weeks by weighing or hefting. Feed fondant on top of the crown board over the feed hole if the hive seems light.

     

  • If you start to feed your bees you need to continue until nectar and pollen become available - possibly by the end of March.

  • Ensure bees have access to water near the hives - used to dilute fondant or crystallized stores.

  • If you see pollen being brought in later in the month from early snowdrops and hellebores, this indicates brood may be being reared and more stores will be required.

  • Ensure hives are strapped up, or put a brick or stone on the lid to ensure lids are not blown off in windy weather.

  • Review your hive records and plan what you intend to do next year - e.g. which hives to breed from and what equipment to order.

  • Clean equipment on a cold day - propolis and wax are brittle and will come off easily using your hive tool to scrape QE, hive boxes, and crown boards clean, then flame them to destroy pathogens.

  • Use the time to do some study to increase your enjoyment and interest in beekeeping. Check out the BBKA website for information.


BeeBase

Beebase News Web feed
  • Survey on how training and information sources for beekeepers and bee farmers can be improved now closed
    20 April 2021
    With thanks to those of you who have already responded. 

    Gyda diolch i'r rhai ohonoch sydd eisoes wedi ymateb. 

    Defra and the Welsh Government want to ensure that beekeepers and bee farmers have access to training and information that can help them implement effective biosecurity and maintain good standards of husbandry, so as to minimise pest and disease risks and improve the sustainability of honeybee populations.

    A questionnaire was available for current beekeepers, people who have recently stopped keeping bees as well as bee farmers to give their views and opinions on the type, accessibility and range of training and information available and how it could be improved. 

    The survey closed on 21 April
  • Seasonal Bee Inspector (SBI) Vacancies
    19 April 2021
    The National Bee Unit currently has a number of Seasonal Bee Inspector (SBI) vacancies advertised in the following areas South Kent & East Sussex, South West Devon and South East Wales

    If you are interested in applying for the job, full details can be found on Civil Service Jobs.


  • Reporting Varroa
    12 April 2021
    Amendments to the Bee Diseases and Pests Control (England) Order 2006, the Bees Diseases and Pest Control (Scotland) Order 2007 and the Bee Diseases and Pests Control (Wales) Order 2006 come into force on the 21st of April 2021 requiring all beekeepers and/or officials in GB to report the presence of Varroa in any of the hives that they manage. This amendment will allow Great Britain to comply with the Animal Health Law which is necessary for future working relationships with the European Union.

    To make this simple, a tick box will be introduced to BeeBase, the voluntary register for beekeepers managed by the National Bee Unit. This will be the easiest way to report Varroa but an alternative mechanism will be provided for those who do not wish to register on the BeeBase system. Details of this alternative system will be provided after 21st April. If Scottish Beekeepers wish to, they can report varroa by contacting the Scottish Bee Health Inspectors (BeesMailbox@gov.scot).

    Although Varroa is known to be widespread, it continues to be one of the most serious pests faced by beekeepers. Reporting Varroa will contribute to the overall pest and disease surveillance work of the National Bee Unit and the Scottish Bee Health Inspectorate. We are grateful for your assistance with this new simple measure.

    No action will be required until after 21st April.