Beer and Bees & the Bell.
A good turn out was present at the Bell on Thursday 28th July for Beer and Bees. Hot topics were supercedure, queens and uniting hives.
The committee have agreed to encourage healthy bees this year, by providing up to 2 hive treatments of Apiguard for members free. If you require more than two hive treatments, we will sell you quantities of apiguard at cost price. Please contact Helen at firstname.lastname@example.org to order and arrange collection. We have brought some stock, but may need to get more, depending on demand, so please let me know.
Beverley Adams Groom, Chief Palynologist and Pollen Forecaster from Worcester University, is keen to do some research on Worcestershire honey pollen content. If you would be interested to provide a sample (about 2 teaspoons), please let me know, as I will be letting her know how many sample pots to provide. When she has done her investigations in January, she’ll be able to let you know exactly what pollens she has found in your honey. If you are interested and haven’t already done so, please contact email@example.com to let me know how many sample pots you will need. (different apiaries/seasons). She will require an apiary location and your contact details on the pot.
Sell your Beeswax.
We have a great opportunity for selling some wax. A local lady with a potions and polish business would like to come and meet us at the Bell in August and buy some of our lovely golden wax. She has made an offer of £6.60 per kilo, which can be broken down reasonably easily into ounces (19p / oz) and pounds (£3.00 per lb). She’ll bring her balance scales with imperial weights. Obviously she does want some lovely clean golden wax, so please make sure you deal with the wax correctly and do not overheat. I usually find the best way is to warm the dirty wax in rainwater, until the wax has melted. (about 63 degrees….if it gets too hot, the wax will darken.)Then tip into a plastic container, and wait until set. The wax will all solidify on top. Then scrape off the gunk from underneath, and warm the wax gently in a metal bowl over a waterbath (like melting chocolate) until liquid. Then pour through a fine filter into a plastic tub. (Silicon is brilliant). I find one way nappy liners very good or you could use butter muslin. Whilst cooling, the wax shrinks, and should be easy to get out. Please let firstname.lastname@example.org know if you would like to bring wax for sale on 25th August at 8pm at the Bell, and approximately how much, as it would be a bit embarrassing if she comes and we have no wax for sale.
Honey Harvest and Honey Show.
Hopefully, your bees will have been very busy collecting honey, and will have filled some supers for you! If there is an excess, and you are extracting honey, the main flow is usually over towards the end of July, so it is time to harvest what you can, and leave the bees to build up their stores for winter, and rear strong winter bees free of virus’ spread by varroa, by treating for varroa if necessary. Save a little honey for the honey show, which is on Sunday 11th September. There will be other classes too, such as photograpy, wax cakes, honey biscuits and cake, so be prepared and have a go. Cups are awarded to most overall points holder, most points for novice beekeeper (under 3 years) and most points for a Junior. As we have no Junior members, grand/children of members are encouraged to enter. Schedules will be available soon, so please have a go.
The club have two extractors for hire, one 4 frame tangential and a 9 frame radial, complete with refractometer and sieves. Should you wish to hire the small tangential extractor, please contact David on email@example.com. Should you wish to hire the larger 7 frame radial, please contact Ian Pennell on firstname.lastname@example.org. Please note GWBKA charges £1 a day for hire of the small one and £2 a day hire for the large one. This is a reasonable charge to encourage the quick return of equipment, so that it is available for others to use. It is very important that equipment is returned in a clean hygenic condition. Therefore, it must be dry before covering up.
The club also have a warming cabinet for hire at £2 a week. This can take 2 x 30lb buckets of set honey and gently warm them at a controlled temperature, ready for bottling. If you would like to borrow this, please contact email@example.com.
August is the month that wasps reduce/stop brood rearing, hence there are many redundant wasps about with a hunger for sweet things (previously the wasp brood provide a sweet treat for worker wasps feeding them with small insects). These redundant wasps will be after your ice creams, plums, beer and honey and the bees honey, so make sure entrances on your beehives are reduced to a minimum. If there is a real wasp problem at you hives, you can use a small length of pipe as the entrance, which will make it easier for the bees to defend. Some suggest standing a sheet glass in front of the entrance can confuse the wasps, but bees come out of the hive and are clever enough to go around. Put the glass up when the bees have gone to bed for the evening!
Secretary – Great Witley Beekeepers