30 April 2009
29 April 2009
The announcement of a new beekeeping course also contains the usual hand-wringing about bee decline. The report includes the following:
"A decline in the number of flowers as food sources has led to a poorer environment for honeybees and is likely to have been a major factor in the 75% decrease in the number of hives over the past 100 years."
"The number of bees has decreased by 75% over the past 100 years."
Well, which is it? Were all bees in hives in past 100 years? Or perhaps the 75% of hives that went were the only full hives, and the remaining 25% devoid of bees?
None of the statements are sourced. For example, has the number of flowers (how do you count 'em?) declined? What about the vast fields of oilseed rape?
26 April 2009
Max, the apiary warden, has been kind enough to check on the bees while I child-wrangle our latest arrival. Max wrote: "If you are working as hard as your bees the wife should be happy. The top super is untouched but they are filling the next one down. If this weather continues it will be fine."
Yes, providing my box-switch-queen-excluder escapade in Hive Bravo actually worked...
Pic from http://www.beesource.com/pov/hayes/abjaug85.htm, well worth a visit
24 April 2009
Quite a good film on BBC4 "Who killed the honey bee" by Martha Kearney.
The odd part was, having not seen the intro titles, I was convinced that it was by Alison Benjamin and Brian McAllum, who wrote "A world without bees." In many ways, it was a televised version of their book.
13 April 2009
Checked the two hives today, and found that both are busy and have active queens.... except that in one hive she is above the excluder.
With limited time - my excuse is the arrival of a new daughter, 23 March - I reshuffled the supers and trust to luck that I have moved the queen below the excluder in the process.
Time will tell.