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Beekeeping on the titterstone Clee hill

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Hi folks, I've wanted to start a blog about beekeeping on the Clee and surrounding area for a while now.. So here goes.

It is definitely interesting beekeeping at 450 metres on a hill, most days its windy and when it rains up here it rains, you can travel down the road 1 mile and you get to the cloud line which is about 700ft high, you almost go down through the cloud and below in the valley its a lovely sunny day calm and usually 3 degrees warmer.

Some times it can be the other way around, you can be above the cloud, and you look down to a sea of white cloud with the distant hills and mountains poking above like dark still giants.
And you have the sun here which is good for the hives to warm up.



There's a saying every 1000ft you climb you lose 3 degrees in temperature, this stands pretty much true, although I've travelled to Ludlow 7 miles away down in the valley and it's been 5 degrees Walmer maybe that's down to it being a town and having alot of concrete jungle.

On to beekeeping I inherited my grandads hives who was a beekeeper at home on the family farm nr the blackmountians olchon Valley area.
He passed away some 8 years ago and he had 17 colonys then.
In 2014 me and my wife were feeding sheep with a quad and stock trailer and to our surprise some of the colonys were still active.

My wife agreed to let me look after them and would let me move some of the colonys home to the clee.
I then spent the summer of 2016 helping a local beekeeper to learn about the bees I was going to look after, she was an elderly lady who had helped grandad with his bees, she couldn't see much and made me look for queen's and eggs all the while.

Fast forward to 2017 I moved one colony to the Clee and found that I was slowly falling in love with the hobby and having a serious bee fever problem.. One could say that I've got quite an obsession with my bees but that's a good thing as its kept my mental health in check.

And yes! I suffer with a anxiety/depression disorder and have done for quite a long time now.
I've had different medications.
Over the years some have helped some have made me worse.. But my bees, family, and gardening have been more help than anything.

I will go in to detail of my bees next time more so and my ups and not so many downs I've had being a beekeeper.

Thanks for reading
Yours mark

Feel free to comment pls.
 

beeker 

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Mark
Following your blog with interest, as I've not long moved to the top end of the hills, little village between the Wrekin and the river, blown away by the beauty of the area.
No bees yet, so taking the lockdown, lack of work [covids stopped almost all my work] to read, and watch as many videos as I can. Joining the association as soon as they send me a link to pay them. Going to spend the winter acquiring basic things, though have a suit from wasps I dealt with in the past.
lovely photos too.
All the best
Another Mark
 
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Hi Mark, I have a fair idea where you are the wrekin is a lovely area I would see the wrekin if it wasn't for the brown Clee in the way, if I go to the summit I can see the wrekin and coalbrook very well.. I'm not sure the pictures clear enough but the wrekin is in the distance on the right hand side.


Are you joining North Shropshire association?, I know a few of the old boys that are with sbka.. I don't really know when meetings will start again but some associations are using zoom for meetings.
You will find that you will learn more on here and maybe look for a mentor who can set you up with your first colony when your ready to start.
If you go down the root of buying a colony I would be able to help you out?

I would also get a few books., the Haynes manual is brilliant for beginners.
Nice to speak to a fellow salopian.
Kind regards
Mark.
 

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Blog entry from my thread "queen bees Mating".



It makes me feel sad that I'm a farmer.
Personally we are stock farmers and produce lamb and beef for M&S..
But know father has passed away the farm is in limbo, And my brother and I are at loggerheads because I want to get rid of all stock and turn the hole farm which consists of 320 acres into a nature park/nursery and grow our small bee farming business..
Im at present buying my brothers half of the farm which is creating a headache in its self.
Making the transition from stock farm to what my vision of what I would like to do with the farm and making it viable is maybe a crazy idea..but I will persist and die trying.. Even sell the clothes I'm standing in if I have to.
The neighbouring farmers think I'm abit loko, and have there concerns.

I never thought my life would come to me being a beekeeper and having such love for my girls and wanting to change our farm and my life so drastically.
This is All down to me moving 1 hive from the farm in 2016 to the Clee and not really having a clue how to look after them at that point.
They have left a lasting impression on me that I will never be able to shake of.

Cheers

Mark.

I've added this to my blog, so in the future I can hopefully read back on this with admiration.
 

Erichalfbee 

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Blog entry from my thread "queen bees Mating".



It makes me feel sad that I'm a farmer.
Personally we are stock farmers and produce lamb and beef for M&S..
But know father has passed away the farm is in limbo, And my brother and I are at loggerheads because I want to get rid of all stock and turn the hole farm which consists of 320 acres into a nature park/nursery and grow our small bee farming business..
Im at present buying my brothers half of the farm which is creating a headache in its self.
Making the transition from stock farm to what my vision of what I would like to do with the farm and making it viable is maybe a crazy idea..but I will persist and die trying.. Even sell the clothes I'm standing in if I have to.
The neighbouring farmers think I'm abit loko, and have there concerns.

I never thought my life would come to me being a beekeeper and having such love for my girls and wanting to change our farm and my life so drastically.
This is All down to me moving 1 hive from the farm in 2016 to the Clee and not really having a clue how to look after them at that point.
They have left a lasting impression on me that I will never be able to shake of.

Cheers

Mark.

I've added this to my blog, so in the future I can hopefully read back on this with admiration.
Have you looked at what Isabella Tree has done at Knepp? I think they have more land than you. Her book Rewilding is worth reading. Whether you agree with the concept or not there are some real eye opening stories and descriptions
 
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A few more photos.
Photo 1 looking out from the bottom of the garden. The teme valley, Ludlow and beyond to mid Wales..
Pic2 sun going down same as number 1.
Pic3 Amm worker on the sedum summer 2020.
Pic4 Alfie rolling out 15 kgs of fondant.
Pic5 ivy honey.
Pic6 line side apiary.
Pic7 catherton common and Clee Hill.
Pic8 left spring honey right osr/apple orchard.
Pic9 2 colonys saved from a farmer in tenbury they had been left for some years.
Pic10 garden apiary may 2020.
IMG_20200917_191953.jpgIMG_20200917_191822.jpgIMG_20200913_142035.jpgIMG_20200905_122129.jpgIMG_20200903_132953.jpgIMG_20200826_063225.jpgIMG_20200829_112830.jpgIMG_20200604_184840.jpgIMG_20200522_170305.jpgIMG_20200411_091559.jpg
Have you looked at what Isabella Tree has done at Knepp? I think they have more land than you. Her book Rewilding is worth reading. Whether you agree with the concept or not there are some real eye opening stories and descriptions
I haven't but I will do cheers
 
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Erichalfbee 

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I've had to put this book on the grandparents in laws lists, as my wife said my list has 5 books already.

Thanks dani it looks very interesting.
Wow 3.500 acres that must of taken some doing... Puts things into perspective hey...
 

The Poot 

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Blog entry from my thread "queen bees Mating".



It makes me feel sad that I'm a farmer.
Personally we are stock farmers and produce lamb and beef for M&S..
But know father has passed away the farm is in limbo, And my brother and I are at loggerheads because I want to get rid of all stock and turn the hole farm which consists of 320 acres into a nature park/nursery and grow our small bee farming business..
Im at present buying my brothers half of the farm which is creating a headache in its self.
Making the transition from stock farm to what my vision of what I would like to do with the farm and making it viable is maybe a crazy idea..but I will persist and die trying.. Even sell the clothes I'm standing in if I have to.
The neighbouring farmers think I'm abit loko, and have there concerns.

I never thought my life would come to me being a beekeeper and having such love for my girls and wanting to change our farm and my life so drastically.
This is All down to me moving 1 hive from the farm in 2016 to the Clee and not really having a clue how to look after them at that point.
They have left a lasting impression on me that I will never be able to shake of.

Cheers

Mark.

I've added this to my blog, so in the future I can hopefully read back on this with admiration.
Only just seen this. As if you didn’t have enough on your plate!
I hope you reach an amicable agreement with your brother....
 

RichardBeeW 

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A few more photos.
Photo 1 looking out from the bottom of the garden. The teme valley, Ludlow and beyond to mid Wales..
Pic2 sun going down same as number 1.
Pic3 Amm worker on the sedum summer 2020.
Pic4 Alfie rolling out 15 kgs of fondant.
Pic5 ivy honey.
Pic6 line side apiary.
Pic7 catherton common and Clee Hill.
Pic8 left spring honey right osr/apple orchard.
Pic9 2 colonys saved from a farmer in tenbury they had been left for some years.
Pic10 garden apiary may 2020.
View attachment 23081View attachment 23082View attachment 23083View attachment 23084View attachment 23085View attachment 23086View attachment 23087View attachment 23088View attachment 23089View attachment 23090

I haven't but I will do cheers
If you shout next time you look towards mid-Wales I'll wave if I hear you .... Who knows 🤷‍♂️
 
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If you shout next time you look towards mid-Wales I'll wave if I hear you .... Who knows 🤷‍♂️
My friend has an observatory we often look over to the cambrian mountains..
Even with the naked eye you can see the wind terbines... And looking north west with the teliscope you can see the top of snowdon and cadri idris (in winter)

Looking down to South wales the brecon becans, hay bluff, Lord Herefords knob, sugar loaf, skirid mountian, Garway Hill.
In winter if you look due south the Bristol Channel.
Looking north the clee summit blocks your view unless you take a walk up to the car park and the panoramic view is breath taking..
It is said if you go due east from the summit the next highest point is the mountains in white Russia.
 

RichardBeeW 

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My friend has an observatory we often look over to the cambrian mountains..
Even with the naked eye you can see the wind terbines... And looking north west with the teliscope you can see the top of snowdon and cadri idris (in winter)

Looking down to South wales the brecon becans, hay bluff, Lord Herefords knob, sugar loaf, skirid mountian, Garway Hill.
In winter if you look due south the Bristol Channel.
Looking north the clee summit blocks your view unless you take a walk up to the car park and the panoramic view is breath taking..
It is said if you go due east from the summit the next highest point is the mountains in white Russia.
I can't tell you how many times I've been on top of Lord Hereford's Knob, Mark
 
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I can't tell you how many times I've been on top of Lord Hereford's Knob, Mark
Llanthony has a very special place in my heart as our farm is nr the cats back Longtown, craswell area.
Ever heard of the half moon pub that is one of our locals.

@hemo why the sad face?
 
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