The weather reports over the last month have frequently referred to ‘unsettled’, ‘variable’, conditions and that could just as well sum up the state of my bees. My experience, along with others’s experiences,seem to indicate that queen mating has been ‘variable’ verging on the ‘unsatisfactory’ this year.
After the hot weather in April and May we could have looked forward to a successful beekeeping year, but since then the weather has been ‘variable’ and whether it is the weather, or the ways in which we are continuing to destroy the natural environment that are affecting bees, this is not proving to be the most profitable year for me or my bees, despite having had plenty of time to attend to them.
A recent report in ‘The Guardian’ stated that researchers in the US have found that bees, particularly managed honeybees, appear to be becoming less effective as pollinators, reasons for this may relate to the use of insecticides and climate changes!
Along with climate change, Coronavirus is still very much on the agenda, and Tim Riggs sent me this:
Maurice West has also come up with some more of his Limericks reflecting Gail Plester’s recent brush with Royalty and the current situation.
Gail Plester has a wonderful reflection,
Whilst drinking her tea with perfection,
With Prince Charles did she chatter,
That bee forage must matter,
And now has a Royal connection.
At lockdown it is very wary,
To have practical sessions at the apiary,
It's done using zoom,
Not all gloom and doom,
But next year should be normal and merry!
Those of you who have taken off honey in July may find your bees are short of stores and need feeding, and those who have not taken off honey yet may find the bees have helped themselves to what they collected in the supers, as forage has now become very scarce and will continue to be so until the Ivy starts to blossom.
August is a busy month with preparations for winter starting so here are some jobs to get on with:
Regards, and stay safe and well,