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Beekeeping Year – July

Things to do this month:-

  • Continue weekly inspections
  • Watch for swarms
  • Add supers (up to 1 a week)
  • Prepare extraction equipment and storage
  • Place nucs into full hives or combine with current colonies
  • Render wax scrapings, burr comb and brace comb
  • Monitor mite drop >10/day consider treatment
  • If colony is going to produce honey only dust with icing sugar

Apiary site at Dundry


Beekeeping Year – June

Here’s what you should be doing this month:-

  • Continue with inspections
  • Practice marking (and clipping) drones
  • Ensure sufficient supers for main flow
  • Extract full supers
  • Continue swarm control
  • Mate new queens
  • Collect swarms (if you know how to)

 Monitor mite drop <10 day OK (~400)

 In emergency dust with icing sugar or 1 tray of Apiguard for 2 weeks!!!

(Reproduced from “The Beekeeping Year” by Ivor Davis on the ABKA website)

BIBBA Conference 2018: 6th-9th September – Cirencester.

Following the well attended and interesting event by Roger Patterson of BIBBA (Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders Association) in Portishead in January 2018, more interesting talks and courses will be available at their conference in September 2018.  For more information use the link below:

BIBBA Conference 2018

Monitored Asian Hornet Trap Sites

Monitoring again for 2018 – WE NEED MORE MONITORING SITES

7 current locations of daily monitored Asian Hornet Traps by North Somerset Beekeepers

Please forward an email with post code of the trap(s) to when you get your trap set up so your location can be added to the map.

Beekeeping Year – May 2017

For advice about what you should be doing with your bees in May, use this link: Advice for May 2018

Beekeeping Year – April

Here’s what you should be doing this month:-

  • Go to BBKA Spring Convention at Harper Adams (13 – 15 April, details on their site)
  • First Complete inspection
    • Shirt sleeve weather
    • Start with weakest hive
    • Gentle smoke
    • 5 rules of inspection
    • Queen/eggs
    • Space to expand
    • Stores ‘til next inspection
    • Building up well
    • Disease
    • Remove old brood combs and replace with new (feed)
    • Assess temper for later queen replacement
    • Start 14 day inspection

 If mite drop >4/day (200 mites in colony) dust with icing sugar when inspecting the colony

(Reproduced from “The Beekeeping Year” by Ivor Davis on the ABKA website)

Beekeeping Year – March

Things to do this month:-

  • Ensure beekeeping clothing is clean and ready for use
  • Go to Branch apiary practice meetings
  • Take Modules
  • Go to Avon AGM
  • Plan shopping list for the year and consider visiting BBKA Spring Convention near Telford
  • First quick inspection
    • Prepare to wash/replace gloves if diseased/ dead hive found
    • Have a bucket of dilute washing soda handy to clean tools and gloves etc. between colonies
    • Look for 3+ frames of brood & 5+ frames of bees
    • Ensure eggs and or open brood
    • Talk to Mentor if not happy
    • Ensure enough food for 2+ Weeks (~10 lbs)
    • Remove mouse guards
    • Records
  • Count mite fall each 2 weeks ( less than 4/day and you are OK)

£150 for second hand WBC hive: see Queens/Equipment Market Place tab at the top of the website


North Somerset Beekeepers runs a stall at this show each year to showcase bees and beekeeping.  Members of North Somerset Beekeepers are available to share their knowledge with the public.  There is an observation hive, virtual hive, a beekeeping display, and candle and badge making for the children.  We sell honey from members and this is a very popular part of the attraction.

In addition, we run a Honey Show on behalf of the North Somerset Agricultural Show which is judged by our very own David Capon.  Here is a link to the rules and schedule of the honey show:

It would be great if as many of you as possible could enter something, even if it is just a honey cake or biscuits, as this is our showcase to the world.  The person scoring the most points in the show will not only be presented with the Hans Wilson Perpetual Honey Cup but also a prize of £25 kindly donated again this year by Hans.

Our display is hugely popular and it is great fun to man the stalls and chat to the general public.

Helpers We are looking for helpers to man the stall during the day.   You would only need to help out for a 2 hour slot and as a reward you receive a free ticket for the Agricultural show.

The slots on 7 May run from 9 to 11, 11 to 1, 1 to 3 and 3 to 5.

Some of you have already volunteered, for which I am grateful, but we still need more names.  So if you have done it before, and know how much fun it is, or if you have never helped out before, we need you.  Even if you have only just entered the world of beekeeping , you still have a lot to offer.  Come along and help.  If you don’t think that you know a lot, you will soon find out how much more you know than the general public!

We also need some help on the previous day, Sunday, 6 May at 4.00pm to assist in setting up the exhibit and to help clear up after the show has finished on the Monday.

Selling honey  Finally if you wish to sell honey at the Show please let me know.  North Somerset Beekeepers requires a 25% commission on honey sold, which is reduced to 10% if you help out on the day, and/or enter into one of the Honey Show classes.

Contact: Sandra Slater at