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Midland Spinner

Introduce yourself

'Twas the presence of an Apiary section on DS that encouraged me to get started with bees. But it's not a lively section of the site so I thought I'd start a new topic.

I live in the Midlands, I've been keeping bees for a couple of years, I still have them after last year, which is great - but more a reflection of their skill than mine!

Over to you.
mochyn

We gave it a try a few years ago but as the old chap's head looked, at one point, as though he had an enormous beefsteak tomato stuck to it we gave up.
Went

We'd love bees but you have to be licensed here and go on an obligatory course. Quite expensive and full of rules and regulations. Maybe one day...
Lorrainelovesplants

My name is Lorraine.....

and Ive been interested in bees since 2002 when my elderly neighbour had 3 hives in her garden.

When we moved to Cornwall I joined a beekeeping group (great way to get started) and soon got colony1 and some secondhand hives.
Since this, Ive had a max of 4 hives, and a min of 1 (at the mo).
Ive met lots of interesting beekeepers (some nice, some really odd) and learn something new about beekeeping every time I chat with others.
Im putting on events with the Rural Business School and this summer for the first time, we are running queen rearing events.
I dont know much about queen rearing, but Im going to learn.
gardening-girl

Hi,
I`ve always been facinated with bees,and several years ago,did a course with Yeovil beekeepers.
Naturally,life threw a spanner in the works,and bees were forgotten until the tail end of last year.
One of my lovely residents moved away,and gave us both a surprise cheque,so I have used mine to buy second hand hives,and to do the course again.
I have a small colony at a friend`s(another beek) house,where she is doing the practical stuff with me until I`m confident.Then my bees will go into the new orchard at Dillington House,near my allotment. Very Happy Very Happy
Colin & Jan

Hi

Unfortunately we've had to pack up beekeeping as Jan had a nasty skin allergic reaction last year, where she collapsed and ended up in A&E. All last Summer it had been bad with rashes, itching, weeping, doctors, anti histamines, tests etc. A shooting fried gave me a pot of propolis cream and said "this will cure it". Jan slathered it on one evening (in hindsight a test patch may have been the way forward!) in November and then promptly collapsed on the floor of the bathroom. Cue 999, ambulance, hospital, drips, steroids, more anti-histamines and blood tests before release later that day. More allergy tests with the GP who confirmed an allergy to bees.

So the 9 hives that came through the winter have now been sold along with other equipment and we are in the process of getting rid of the rest of the equipment.
Sally Too

Hi... A few years ago I bought hubby all the kit for his birthday and we got our first hive of bees.

He did the Prelim course that winter and I got interested too. It's a lovely hobby for a couple.

A couple of years later I did the Prelim course too - and remarkably we both scored exactly the same grade! LOL.

Last summer I attended a Queen rearing course, and reared a couple of queens in an apidea and re-queened our remaining 2 hives. (We lost one in spring last year)

I also started the Intermediate Bee Keeping course and sat the first exam this spring.

Sadly our remaining hives did not survive the winter. So we will need to start from scratch again.

Hopefully soon, but getting bees is not easy this weather. I have a couple of bait hives out, so who knows! Cool
cassy

We were beekeepers for 2 year. Unfortunately our bees didn't make it through the second winter; a combination of beginners mistakes and lack of local forage. They were lovely quiet bees and I miss them.

We were members of our local association, attended the training sessions and beginners course and got a lot of help to get started from them. Given the difficulties bees and their keepers are having a the moment, it doesn't seem like a good time to start again (for us).
Mistress Rose

My husband has been a beekeeper for over 30 years. When he started there were still one or two of the old timers around who had started during WWII. He hasn't been very active with beekeeping for a few years now as we are too busy in the woods, but still have a couple of hives.

We seem to attract a swarm from a local beekeeper who claims never to have them (ha, ha) every year or two, and the ones that fetched up on the patio in a pile of hive boxes have just died out and was removing all the wild comb last week. Currently seem to have a couple of hives in the woods, one of which needs to be rehomed as it is the wrong box.

I do the processing of honey and wax, but have had to deal with particularly nasty colonies as I can go very calm at times like that and then they don't bother me, even though they have chased off my husband.
Mistress Rose

My husband has been a beekeeper for over 30 years. When he started there were still one or two of the old timers around who had started during WWII. He hasn't been very active with beekeeping for a few years now as we are too busy in the woods, but still have a couple of hives.

We seem to attract a swarm from a local beekeeper who claims never to have them (ha, ha) every year or two, and the ones that fetched up on the patio in a pile of hive boxes have just died out and was removing all the wild comb last week. Currently seem to have a couple of hives in the woods, one of which needs to be rehomed as it is the wrong box.

I do the processing of honey and wax, but have had to deal with particularly nasty colonies as I can go very calm at times like that and then they don't bother me, even though they have chased off my husband.
mochasidamo

We have a handful of apiaries including two seasonal ones on both sides of the border and supply a few local shops under a regional Sustainable Business Scheme. We selectively breed our own queens (a continuous learning process) and are active in the Association Bee Improvement Group (I do grafting and new queen assessment/marking mainly).

I tutor beginners for the Association (practicals) here and am lead tutor on our second year course. I am also active as secretary and swarm co-ordinator. I am also a trustee for the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders' Association (covers the UK & Eire), a volunteer for the Bumble Bee Conservation Trust, and from later this year have a five year involvement providing training and queen rearing expertise for the local Landscape Partnership Scheme aiming to improve local bee stocks over 200 km2 to do better in our climate and increase the abilities of beekeepers to improve the health and survival of their stocks while hopefully harvesting a bit of surplus honey too.

And have little time for much else atm Smile
Midland Spinner

It's gone all quiet again. There must be more DS Beeks out there - surely?
dan1

I have a HTBH which started with a nuc last year and precariously survived the horrible summer and extended winter. Seems to be doing OK but a bit slow in getting going. Planning to do a split/artificial swarm at some point. Also member of a suspainable beek group in Bristol. We've just installed a hive on the roof of a massive office block thats being used as a co-op by various hippy-ish groups!
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