Quantcast

Today's Observer

Beekeeping Forum

Help Support Beekeeping Forum:

Poly Hive 

Queen Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
13,655
Reaction score
3
Location
Scottish Borders
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
9 and 18 Nucs
Ok this is what I have heard.

Personally I lost some 20% which I consider perfectly normal.

Talking to a Scottish Beefarmer at Stoneleigh he reported excellent over wintering with below normal losses.

Talking to another Bee Farmer at Stoneleigh he told me of losses running at 70%+ in some operations. This would be in tune with the article and the disease issues over the border. (pretty bloody poor bee farming not to see major disease issues but that is another matter)

So where are we in general? In my view beekeeping is on the up, seriously so and so are there fewer or more colonies in the UK than there were three years ago? I think more.

But as always a good news story sells no papers.

PH
 

Hebeegeebee 

Drone Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
1,982
Reaction score
20
Location
S.E. Norfolk
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
12 on a good day, often more..
There was a comment in the article about a lack of bee inspectors. I have not read of any issues in online forums (fora). I am sure someone would have moaned if there were?

I would ahve thought that a beekeeper with 1200 hives would not rely on a bee inspector or the lack of one if his business depended upon his bees.
 

Poly Hive 

Queen Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
13,655
Reaction score
3
Location
Scottish Borders
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
9 and 18 Nucs
There are/were no bee inspectors in Scotland, not since mid 90's.

PH
 

johna 

House Bee
Joined
Feb 11, 2010
Messages
361
Reaction score
0
Location
South West Scotland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
20
There are/were no bee inspectors in Scotland, not since mid 90's.

PH
WE've got a few up here in Scotland now since the outbreak of AFB and EFB and I understand a few more part timers are being trained up.Perhaps the new government will spare a few pounds to help save the bee - but I doubt it - we've got to replace our Polaris fleet first and sustain an unwinnable war in Afganestan.
 

grizzly 

Drone Bee
Joined
Nov 9, 2008
Messages
1,106
Reaction score
0
Location
Hampshire
Hive Type
langstroth
Number of Hives
6
"In a hard-hitting report last year, the National Audit Office suggested that amateur beekeepers who failed to spot diseases in bees were a threat to honeybees' survival and called for the National Bee Unit to carry out more inspections and train more beekeepers"

Comments like this really tick me off, i met someone from the BBC Natural History Unit yesterday, and he came out with the same thing but before blaming any other cause of decline, it would seem that someone somewhere away from the NAO is stoking the "Lets blame the beekeepers" fire.

So according to that comment, two of the hives i lost this year to disease were my fault, as i did not spot it until it was too late !! So can someone tell me how you can spot a disease that has no visible sign such as Nosema C.

There appears to be high losses locally to me, met some from the local association who also lost more than 50%, the Looooong winter certainly did not help.
 

jezd 

Drone Bee
Joined
May 12, 2009
Messages
1,541
Reaction score
2
Location
UK
Hive Type
other
Number of Hives
299.1
Ok, just for the record and IMO this reporter is making a career from making a crisis as she spends her time hovering over each new report and waiting for bad news. I attended the What’s the Buzz event at the University of Sussex just the other week and there is a definite drive from her and others to paint doom and gloom - no disaster = no work = no funding for starters - she also kindly announced her next big release "A world Without Bees II", no kidding, she announced this book is due for release late this year or next. She is actually planning her next doom and gloom book on bees….

I take the media with a big bucket of salt after that event and others, yes there are issues but far too many ppl have personal and careers agendas in communicating bad news for me to believe much of what I read.

We need more positive news, I would love to have come back to this forum with a great write-up on University work but sadly they seem to spend all the time on waggle dances (nice ppl mind :) ).
 
Last edited:

Rosti 

Drone Bee
Joined
Jul 29, 2009
Messages
1,750
Reaction score
0
Location
North Yorks, UK
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
4
"it would seem that someone somewhere away from the NAO is stoking the "Lets blame the beekeepers" fire.


I've just put my flak jacket on and retired to the bunker..... 'blame the beekeeper may have some credibility as an argument' but the article is talking about losses in the USA and with USA disciplines and in an attempt to sell news papers. I am certain that the balance between pollination services, honey production and hobbiest keeping is very different in the UK to the US and I suspect that the losses are significantly elevated within the pollination sector.

Why am I saying this > National Bee Unit is based at the Central Science Laboratory, York. I live in York. I know at a friendship level several guys who work within DEFRA based in York, including one with contact/knowledge of the bee unit. We have talked bees in some detail over a pint or several. I understand that over winter their research and their monitoring hives (100+) achieved a zero loss. Good on them and chalk one up to good husbandry.

Surely our actions, our monitoring, our manipulations and the geography of our chosen apiary sites has a very significant impact on colony health and viability (my words not to be asociated with anyone at DEFRA). There will be outside factors - parasites - agro chemical treatments etc; but as beeks I can not accept that we rule ourselves out of the equation - or can we? discuss!
 

Black Comb 

Queen Bee
Joined
Aug 10, 2009
Messages
2,737
Reaction score
0
Location
Cumbria
Hive Type
other
Number of Hives
10+
What I don't understand is that hive numbers must be increasing as over the past 2 years thousands of new beeks have been attracted into beekeeping and all must have at least one (or more likely 2) hives, which just were'nt there 3 or 4 years ago.
 

jezd 

Drone Bee
Joined
May 12, 2009
Messages
1,541
Reaction score
2
Location
UK
Hive Type
other
Number of Hives
299.1
What I don't understand is that hive numbers must be increasing as over the past 2 years thousands of new beeks have been attracted into beekeeping and all must have at least one (or more likely 2) hives, which just were'nt there 3 or 4 years ago.
UK or USA?
 

Hivemaker. 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 8, 2008
Messages
14,310
Reaction score
8
Location
Exmoor.
Hive Type
national
but as beeks I can not accept that we rule ourselves out of the equation - or can we? discuss!

Depends if your a PPB.....if you are, then your in the equation.
 
Last edited:

OXFORDBEE 

Field Bee
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
731
Reaction score
11
Location
Oxfordshire
Hive Type
commercial
Number of Hives
More than 1, numbers seem to go up and down.
Don't worry; soon government spending will plummet and non-essential services like bee inspectors will start to dry up. Either that or we will all end up paying a levy on on our hives to fund the inspectors.

I wonder when EFB will be made non-notifiable ....
 

Hivemaker. 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 8, 2008
Messages
14,310
Reaction score
8
Location
Exmoor.
Hive Type
national
I wonder when EFB will be made non-notifiable ....

Soon as the money dries up i suspect,was nearly for the chop a couple of years ago.
 

shonabee 

House Bee
Joined
Mar 26, 2009
Messages
121
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Hive Type
none
"In a hard-hitting report last year, the National Audit Office suggested that amateur beekeepers who failed to spot diseases in bees were a threat to honeybees' survival and called for the National Bee Unit to carry out more inspections and train more beekeepers"

Commercial beeks are at least as bad as amateur's: EFB and AFB were discovered in commercial guys' bees last summer in Scotland.
 

oliver90owner 

Queen Bee
Joined
Jul 15, 2009
Messages
15,632
Reaction score
35
Location
Lincolnshire
Hive Type
14x12
" amateur beekeepers who failed to spot diseases in bees were a threat to honeybees' survival "

Goes back a bit - no, a lot - further than this, I think.

Or is it never mind the monocrops, removed hedgerows, the pesticides, open importation of disease,etc,etc. Honey bees could probably not survive in any numbers, but for the amateurs and beefarmers who are keeping the species nurtured and generally well looked after. Well, much better than the treatment the government gives them (and the myriad of their other arthropod relatives which are also seriously in decline).

Certainly the right way to go - more inspectors. But perhaps they should be renamed 'advisors' - except the government would definitely be charging for their advice if that were to happen.

And don't blame the commercial guys. Their livliehood is at stake here. I don't always agree with some of the practices, but that is the way they have to operate to make a living.

RAB
 

Rosti 

Drone Bee
Joined
Jul 29, 2009
Messages
1,750
Reaction score
0
Location
North Yorks, UK
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
4
But perhaps they should be renamed 'advisors' - except the government would definitely be charging for their advice if that were to happen.
RAB


RAB that might not be a bad idea. If all hives have to be registered and 'advisors' visit, then the govt is also going to have to explain why they are doing this, ergo they recognise the following:

23-04-09 (source BBC) The value of the bees' services were estimated at £200m a year. The retail value of what they pollinate was valued closer to £1bn.

I'll pay my, say £50 for an 'advisory' visit against clearly formalised/qualifying standards of 'what a good hive looks like' and will then look forward to my cut of the £200m. I think there are about 250k hives estimated in the UK - that's £800 per hive, nice profit!

Or to put it another way, the country needs us amateurs much more than we need them (as beeks I mean)! Only a numpty would try to regulate us out of a hobby that they need us to participate in, at our expense so that others make profit or get fed cheaply.

:rant:

Note to Admin: no tongue-in-cheek smiley!
 

shonabee 

House Bee
Joined
Mar 26, 2009
Messages
121
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Hive Type
none
"In a hard-hitting report last year, the National Audit Office suggested that amateur beekeepers who failed to spot diseases in bees were a threat to honeybees' survival and called for the National Bee Unit to carry out more inspections and train more beekeepers"

Commercial beeks are at least as bad as amateur's: EFB and AFB were discovered in commercial guys' bees last summer in Scotland.
Actually, it does sound like I'm moaning about commercial beeks, which wasn't my intention at all! More that it's wrong to blame ignorance or bad-practice of beekeepers for all the problems. People who manage to make their living in such a difficult way cannot be accused of rampant bad practice or ignorance, or they'd've gone bust years ago.
 

Latest posts

Top