NBU / SBKA Good Bee Husbandry Day – Sunday 8 June

Talks and practical demonstrations provided by staff from the National Bee Unit aimed at helping beekeepers maintain healthy and productive colonies of bees. Topics will include:

•     Inspecting bees for brood diseases and exotic pests
•     Varroa monitoring and control
•     Good apiary hygiene
•     Comb changing techniques
•     Making nucs and colony increase

This event is particularly recommended for those taking the BBKA Basic and contemplating further progression towards the GH certificate but is not intended for complete beginners. Please bring your own clean protective clothing and a packed lunch.

The day is being sponsored by the NBU and the fee of £5.00 is to cover refreshments and room hire charges. There will be a great deal of demand for places so book early and no later than 1st June. It would be most helpful if you could book on line and pay electronically www.sheffieldbeekeepers.org.uk.

Registration from 9.30am on the day.

Sign up!

NBU day June 2014

Sawmill Location June 2014

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Bee Improvement For All…

In conjunction with the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Association (BIBBA) the Sheffield BKA held a “Bee Improvement for All” day on Sunday 15th March. To a packed audience, Roger Patterson of BIBBA, gave an interesting, amusing and informative talk on his 50 years keeping bees and his methods of improving the quality of the current British bee.

Over 130 beekeepers traveled from neighbouring associations such as Huddersfield, Bradford & Chesterfield to listen to Roger challenge us to “leave aside our mental barriers” in order to gain the most from the talk.

An excellent lunch was laid on for all attendees and it was a great (and rare) experience for all beekeepers to get together and discuss beekeeping during the breaks.

Cathy Butcher, a beekeeper from Sheffield said “A wonderful day. It was a great opportunity for beekeepers across the region to meet and discuss bee improvement. I’m looking forward to putting into practice the ideas and lessons shared with us by one of the foremost beekeepers in the country”.

Ian Smith, Chair of Sheffield Beekeepers’ Association which hosted the event said “ At a time when we are faced with declining bee populations out is reassuring to see so many beekeepers under one roof all with a common purpose – to improve the wellbeing of their bees. Roger Patterson was inspirational and we all benefitted from his experience and knowledge.”

Roger Patterson, of the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Association who was the tutor said “This was the ninth of eleven “Bee Improvement for All” days that have been held throughout the country during the winter. The event was organized and hosted by Sheffield BKA which in beekeeping terms is a very young organization. It attracted a large number of enthusiastic and knowledgeable beekeepers, indicating a vibrant and well run association that has trained their members to a high standard. Bee improvement is not often a main consideration with amateur beekeepers, but the keeping of better stock is crucial in the long term to a strong and healthy bee population. In giving a whole days presentation I was left in no doubt the audience were enthusiastic about the subject.”

Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Association

Roger’s book – Beekeeping – A practical guide

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February meeting summary

Despite fairly awful weather, the monthly meeting had a good turnout to listen to David Shannon give his talk on how to prepare honey and wax for showing in competitions.

David has considerable experience showing at regional and national competitions with the medals, ribbons and certificates to prove it and the captive audience (literally, David was blocking the exit to the bar!) was taught the subtle tricks of the trade in how to ensure nothing but your best ends up on the show bench.

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January meeting summary

It was standing room only as Master Beekeeper John Whitaker from Barkston Ash Beekeepers Association spoke on his experiences in beekeeping with special emphasis on doing it in the most cost-effective manner. There were questions and some discussion on varroa control as John produced some interesting slides combining his love of mathematics and beekeeping. John has written a book on beekeeping – see the usual Amazon link below (other retailers are available).

Meanwhile SBKA treasurer Joy Slingsby was kept busy as people took advantage of Neil Pont from Lincolnshire Apiarie’s offer of fondant which was being sold at cost price (when bought by the box!).


John Whitaker’s book on Amazon
Barkston Ash Beekeepers Association

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