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August 2022 BIBBA Monthly

[…]seeing some in three out of the four apiaries I recently used for the BIBBA Bee Improvement and Queen Rearing courses. At one of them, the first two colonies I inspected had problems. I have recently found something that is connected but slightly different in one of my colonies called Violet. As a keen amateur naturalist, I name my colonies […]

A Simple Method of Simultaneously Raising Queens and Producing Nuclei

[…]Beachaire (The Irish Beekeeper) The reader may groan and sigh, “not another queen-rearing method,” and I agree that there seems to be an endless number of ways of rearing queens, including the Miller, Hopkins, Alley, Harden and Harding methods.  Although sometimes seen as a black art, queen-rearing is an important part of beekeeping, and every beekeeper should have access to […]
Read more » A Simple Method of Simultaneously Raising Queens and Producing Nuclei

Improving bees by raising your own queens

[…]distribution. Queen introduction. Mating control. Some of the myths of bee improvement and queen rearing. Experience shows that each course is different, being tailored to suit the location and the needs of attendees, but including much of the above. What equipment is needed? There will be time spent at the bees, so bring clean protective clothing. It is asked that […]

BOBBI Spring 2022 Newsletter

[…]members every Saturday and they spent the day with Brian Green and I, going through the entire queen rearing process.   We hope to do something similar this year, so watch this space for dates and times. Joining BBOBIIf anyone from Bucks, Berks or Oxfordshire would be interested in joining BBOBI, please feel free to contact Brian Green directly and we […]

NatBIP News No8

[…]to suit your own requirements and allow you to select for the qualities that are important to you. Queen rearing Some relish the challenge of queen rearing, whilst others find it a bit daunting. Techniques described in the Guide, can be as simple as building a colony up on two brood boxes and then dividing into two, to produce a […]

Let’s Go Beekeeping!

[…]brood combs; Making up a two frame nuc; Roger’s inspection kit; cold or warm way?; Protecting a queen cell; Assembling national frames and boxes; and, most recently, the Toggle hive strap. For three days, except for a change of clothes, this is how we were dressed. The bees were a delight. Like all of Roger’s presentations, what you see is what […]

Home

[…]and of improving the quality of our honey bees. This Programme aims to provide a way forward to a stable and sustainable future for our beekeeping ...READ MORE BIBBA Opposes the Importation of Honey Bees and Queens for these 15 reasons Education and Training eLearning Course Beekeeping is fun! And with our online courses, you can develop a love for […]

Why do the bees rear so many drones?

[…]drones? This piece aims to explain: why the production of a large number of drones is the inevitable consequence of the free mating of queens in drone congregations; and why this proliferation of drones is a key factor in ensuring the adaptability and resilience of the honey bee through the ages. “Drones in their season seem necessary to the working […]

Home5

[…]and of improving the quality of our honey bees. This Programme aims to provide a way forward to a stable and sustainable future for our beekeeping ...READ MORE BIBBA Opposes the Importation of Honey Bees and Queens for these 15 reasons Education and Training eLearning Course Beekeeping is fun! And with our online courses, you can develop a love for […]

Home3a

[…]and of improving the quality of our honey bees. This Programme aims to provide a way forward to a stable and sustainable future for our beekeeping ...READ MORE BIBBA Opposes the Importation of Honey Bees and Queens for these 15 […]

BIBBA YouTube Videos

[…]visit our YouTube Channel. Jump to: Just Started | The Early Years | Intermediate/Advanced | Queen rearing | General Interest | Live @ the Hive | NatBIP Just Started or about to For those who are considering starting beekeeping or who have just started, perhaps in their first full year. The Early Years – Sound Foundations in Beekeeping These titles […]

Sandringham Report 2021

[…]late. The bees at Sandringham were not particularly strong colonies which would be needed if any queen rearing was to take place. So queens were removed from two of my other colonies to allow them to be united with the two already at Sandringham. As a point of interest, as I was not keen to kill the queens, I put […]

BIBBA Books

[…]need for a physical teaching and resources apiary to spread and nurture the craft of beekeeping. Queen Rearing Made Easy: The Punched Cell Method Raising queens using the Punched Cell method has been in use for over a century. Richard Smailes published “Raise Your Own Queens by the Punched Cell Method” about half a century ago. Little has been published since. Few […]

The Native Irish Honey Bee

[…]in the 2020s as our knowledge of honey bee genetics increases), conservation, bee improvement and queen rearing, and a review of the past, present, and future for the native honey bee in Ireland. This is not just an excellent read, it is one of those books that you will keep going back to time after time. reviewed by Selwyn Runnett […]

Lune Valley New Breeding Apiary

[…]new to beekeeping, our initial intention is to focus on producing splits. We may move on to queen rearing at a later stage. As the season comes to a close, we have a new, wheelchair accessible, all-weather base for our breeding apiary, six colonies of fairly pure Amm, all housed in Lune Valley Long Hives and six solid stands, each […]

NatBIP News No 7

[…]we can influence our local population and gradually get more consistent results. Without imported queens, and by producing offspring from our selected breeder queens (which will produce good drones, regardless of their matings) we can influence the local drone population. I have seen this achieve results in my area and we know others have done the same. Local mating stations […]

NatBIP News No6

[…]locally adapted bee. God Save the Queen! So, June is when we get into our queen rearing proper – excitement and disappointment abound, but our plucky NatBIP News volunteers are a persistent bunch! Phil – our beginner – has relied on the natural method of queen rearing, using the bees swarming instinct to produce new queens. By performing an artificial […]

NatBIP News No5

[…]beekeepers believe wet grafting is advantageous. Can you run through the ‘numbers’ regards Queen Rearing - from egg to sealed QC, to hatch to mating and laying? Day 1              Egg laid Day 4              1-day old larva grafted and transferred to cell-raising colony Day 8/9           Cells are sealed Day 14            Distribute sealed cells (that is 1 week + 3 days […]

NatBIP News No4

[…]and become part of the movement towards sustainable beekeeping. Jo Widdicombe Breeder queens and queen-rearing As the active season gets well under way, we can continue to monitor the qualities of our queens using our own system of record-keeping or download the record card from the NatBIP GUIDE on the BIBBA website (search bibba.com). As we assess the qualities of […]

Dover and Districts BKA Q rearing support group – CT4

[…]and husbandry techniques delivered as Zoom meetings. Individual members are guided to choose a queen rearing method appropriate for their circumstances and skill level; individual or small group support will be given as they undertake their queen rearing. There is no charge for this course, but participants must be a member of Dover & District BKA and, if excess queens […]
Read more » Dover and Districts BKA Q rearing support group – CT4

East Midlands 1998

[…]Over the years we have kept a record of the many tips that we have found to be of help in queen rearing. Recently these were listed and found to number 55. Use of an incubator for hatching queen cells. This year we had more queen cells that failed to hatch than in previous years. As we take our nucs […]

NatBIP News No3

[…]assessing the qualities of our colonies, and therefore of our queens, so that we can select a queen, or queens, to use to produce the next generation of queens. Ideally, have a record card for each colony (i.e. one for each queen) and assess the colony on each inspection. The ‘NatBIP Record Card’ can be downloaded from the BIBBA website […]

NatBIP News No2

[…]area’. How long before I can select a ‘breeder queen’? Much has been written about queen rearing but surprisingly little about assessment of colonies and selecting which queen to breed from. What there is, can be off-putting as, often, such a long-winded process is recommended that few of us would ever reach an end-result. Particularly in the first season, one […]

Section 8.1 – Dominating an Area with the Selected Strain

[…]So, it is suggested that feeding is started three weeks prior to the start of your first round of queen rearing. Also, a frame of drone comb or foundation can be inserted in the breeder colonies. Once it has been laid up it can be removed and replaced with another frame of drone comb or foundation.  The laid up frame […]
Read more » Section 8.1 – Dominating an Area with the Selected Strain

Section 7.1 – The Mating of Queens

[…]- Use of nucs, mini-nucs and mini+ nucs Whether you are using natural queen cells, emergency queen cells, grafted queen cells or cells produced from larval transfer kits (such as Jenter or Cupkit), the next step in the process is finding a home for the queen cell or virgin queen so that she can go on mating flights from about […]

Section 5.1 – Queen Rearing Methods

Photo by Roger Patterson Queen Rearing Methods There are so many techniques of queen rearing, and so much has been written about them, that it may seem unwise to add any more. Studying too many methods can be a source of much confusion and leave one overwhelmed and unsure of how to proceed. Like most things in beekeeping, the best […]

Section 4.14 – NatBIP 1 Record Card Instructions

[…]Association Queen or Colony Origin: Source or origin of Queen and/or Colony Name or No. of Strain: Queen Name or No.: Name/no. if breeder Queen Mark/Age: Letter for year colour. Circled if marked Queen description: Colour, stripes, clipped? Apiary Name: Name or location of apiary Hive No.: Number or ID of hive Hive Type: Type of hive + Brood box […]
Read more » Section 4.14 – NatBIP 1 Record Card Instructions

Section 3.1 – The Selection of Local Stock

[…]of ‘inbreeding’ and maintaining genetic diversity. To allow us to select the most desirable queens to rear a new generation of queens from, and to replace, or remove from the area, undesirable queens, we need to use a system of record-keeping that allows us, over time, to build up a picture of the qualities of each queen. Beekeepers are often […]

Section 2.1 – How NatBIP will work

[…]of our colonies. Producing the next generation From our completed record cards, we can choose the queen or queens to rear further queens from. Some will want to rear numerous queens from a few selected queens, others may prefer just one or two offspring from numerous queens, perhaps up to half of available stocks. It is important not to narrow […]

Section 1.3 – Participation

[…]– Publication with articles from BIBBA Monthly Publications and guidance on bee improvement and queen rearing Support for local Bee Improvement Groups Lectures, demonstrations, workshops on all aspects of bee improvement Support us in developing a hardy, docile and productive bee. 2. Sign up as a Supporter of the National Bee Improvement Programme (NatBIP). (Free) Supporters of the scheme are […]

Webinars – Summary

Recordings of the majority of webinars are also available on our YouTube Channel Don’t forget to sign up here, for free, to learn more about our future […]

BIBBA Monthly – December 2020

[…]– Playing your part" 23.       Roger Patterson          “Understanding queen rearing methods” March 2.         Roger Patterson          “Bee Improvement. How I did it” 9.         Keith Pierce                 "Breeding and improving our native bee. A pragmatic approach, even if you are surrounded by non-native bees" 16.       Kevin Thorn                 “Working Together to Improve Local Stock” 23.       Roger […]

Queens: Collaboration and how to make it easy on yourself and your bees – by Karl Colyer

[…]about getting yourself organised. Figure out how to create another 1-6 colonies for when a suitable larvae, queen cell, virgin queen or mated queen becomes available. Have a few things prepared so that when you get the call or email, it’s not a mad dash. As soon as the above equipment is used, figure out where the next frames, box […]
Read more » Queens: Collaboration and how to make it easy on yourself and your bees – by Karl Colyer

Queens – an example of collaboration between beekeepers, by Roger Patterson

[…]the first to be replaced in the spring, the colonies often being used for the earlier rounds of queen rearing. In September 2019, BIBBA Chair Karl Colyer was the victim of a road incident that left him unable to prepare his bees for winter. This and flooding meant he had heavy winter losses, from which he spent the spring and […]
Read more » Queens – an example of collaboration between beekeepers, by Roger Patterson

Cupkit, Fakes and Annoyance

[…]queens.  It is rather annoying when a cage falls off the holder, releasing the virgin into a queen rearing colony.  It is difficult to keep all the compatible parts together – in use they get mixed up – so, as I don’t like wasting things, I nailed a bar in the frame so that if the cage did fall off […]

Conserving black bees

[…]to improve the native strain consider­ably.”2 A local farmer, Niall McNeill, was trained in queen rearing. Queens and nucs were sent regularly to the mainland. In 1945, Eva Crane, Direc­tor of the International Bee Research Association in the U.K., recorded in her diary a visit to Colonsay and Oronsay and her interest in find­ing Black Bees on the islands, which […]

Webinars – Season Two

Tuesday 18th August 7:30pm – Roger Patterson – “Dead Bees Don’t Buzz – Surviving the Winter “ Presentation:  “Dead Bees Don’t Buzz – Surviving the Winter “ View Recording – Roger Patterson – “Dead Bees Don’t Buzz – Surviving the Winter “ Tuesday 25th August 7:30pm – Lynfa Davies – “The Mystery of Mating” Presentation:  “The Mystery of Mating”. View […]

Surrey Hills Queen Rearing – GU1

[…]with BIBBA’s objectives we look towards breeding from local stock without importing any bees or queens. Promoting this approach we hope to encourage other beekers to do the same. contact Sarah Rowlands […]

Bloomington Bees – USA

Limestone Bees: We are currently a small group but currently looking for more members who share the love of Beekeeping and a passion for honeybees.  Bloomington Indiana 47403 USA contact  Nathanael […]

NatBIP – May 2020

[…]gained. It will cover such things as the record card and record-keeping, selecting breeder queens, queen rearing techniques, working in groups/Group Handbook, dominating an area with the selected strain/establishing a strain, selection of local stock/refining the native strain, and availability and distribution of surplus queens from other beekeepers. In the meantime, the Programme is being piloted at various apiaries around […]

Membership Application

[…]and methods. Demonstrations and workshops on practical subjects, such as colony assessment and queen rearing. Publications and guidance on all aspects of bee improvement and queen rearing. Support projects in areas with a high level of native bees. Courses on bee improvement and raising queens, using both natural methods the bees present us with that will suit the ordinary beekeeper, […]

BBOBI Group – April 2020 Newsletter

[…]and offering mated queens or even nucs to you in late June. We have been researching and making queen banks in the hope we can hold our best queens a little longer this year. Another success from last year was the social gatherings at a local pub, this started in April and unless we can meet via a Zoom session, […]

Bucks Berks & Oxon Bee Improvement (BBOBI ) – RG9

[…]We encourage beekeepers to value and nurture their drones with the same care they would their queens. Encourage the use of British hybrid queens We want to encourage people to buy British and support their fellow beekeepers by buying locally adapted British hybrids. We want to discourage the use of the so called ‘Buckfast bee’ whose name has become synonymous […]
Read more » Bucks Berks & Oxon Bee Improvement (BBOBI ) – RG9

I Want Bees

Which is the Best Bee? What is Apis mellifera mellifera? Apis mellifera mellifera, Linnaeus 1758 is a subspecies and northern geographical race of Apis mellifera, the western honeybee. It may be subdivided into many local ecotypes. Its various vernacular names include:“Dark European Honeybee” (English),“L’abeille noire” (French),“Die dunkle Biene” (German) and“Det mörka Nordiska Biet” (Swedish) Apis mellifera mellifera is distinguished from […]

Paypal UK Members

renewal each year on 1st January Ordinary membershipone person £25 Full Name Telephone number Joint membershiptwo people at same address £35 Full Name Telephone […]

A Proposal for a National Honey Bee Improvement Programme

[…]and other beekeepers, favour the use of imported queens in their operations. A more developed queen rearing and breeding industry has grown up in Europe and around the world than in the UK, partly due to more favourable weather conditions, but also perhaps due to a lack of initiative by UK Government and beekeeping organizations. DEFRA formed a committee in […]
Read more » A Proposal for a National Honey Bee Improvement Programme

Bee Improvement Strategies – Kevin Thorn -part one

[…]swarm! Simple queen propagation – there’s no need to worry initially, about complex methods of queen rearing (unless you want to). Simple splits can raise a lot of queens. When I first became a commercial Beekeeper, I had only 6 colonies but by splitting each of these, I had 32 by the end of the season (not much honey though)! […]
Read more » Bee Improvement Strategies – Kevin Thorn -part one

Bee Improvement Strategies – Kevin Thorn -part two

More advanced Strategies in Bee Improvement suitable for native bees Many people find queen rearing a daunting prospect. There is an overwhelming amount of information, methods and advice. For clarity you simply need to select your selection criteria, a method of starting queen cells, a method of mating your queens and a method of introducing your queens. It makes sense […]
Read more » Bee Improvement Strategies – Kevin Thorn -part two

Lester Wickham

[…]a trio of tykes. Lester appreciated what Beowulf was proposing and he and a friend started a queen rearing project in the heights above Holme Firth, long before Compo, Cleggy and Norah Batty entered our lives. The strong winds over the Pennines proved too much for successful queen mating so they retrenched into the Holme Valley and went for honey, […]

Bees for Sale

[…]raise extra queens and nucs to sell in order that we can dissuade beekeepers from buying imported queens. We presently do not have the ability to inspect or vouch for such queens and nucs and simply require the seller to give an assurance that they are raised from local stock and are not imports, and that the seller supports the […]

BIBBA Monthly – September 2019

Queen Rearing – my preferred method by Jo Widdicombe Setting Up a Breeding Conservation Group BIBBA members can download a pdf copy of the full magazine for personal […]

BIM 52 – Spring 2019

From the President – Jo Widdicombe Queen rearing at Exeter – Catherine Mudge One size fits all – Baruch Livneh Battling the Bandits – Dorian Pritchard Adventures in Beekeeping – Brian Ripley BIBBA Conference 2018 – Roger Patterson SICAMM Conference 2018 – Jo Widdicombe Aimo Nurminen – Lassi Kauko BIBBA members can download a pdf copy of the full magazine […]

What does BIBBA Offer?

[…]and methods. Demonstrations and workshops on practical subjects, such as colony assessment and queen rearing. Publications and guidance on all aspects of bee improvement and queen rearing. Support projects in areas with a high level of native bees.   Courses on bee improvement and raising queens, using both natural methods the bees present us with that will suit the ordinary […]

Adrian Waring

[…]Brooke poem – Adrian recited the rest of the poem! He demonstrated skill at managing bees and queen rearing which he was able to convey to others.   Adrian was also a stick dresser – a maker of walking sticks.   He made one for me with a skep carved on the handle, which will remind me of the time we spent together.   He […]

Neville Dearden

[…]of his working life in senior executive roles in business demanded that he always had a busy time table but he still managed to keep up to 10 productive urban hives in his own garden and later on a nearby allotment. Whilst working as a non-executive director of a fibreglass fabrication company Neville researched designed, and oversaw production of the […]

BBOBI Group – March April 2019 Newsletter

[…]Colony Survival Survey: https://www.bbka.org.uk/winter-colony-survival-survey-1819 May & June Queen rearing continues July training get together to review our progress to our aims and share our lessons. We’ve had interest from new beekeepers and keepers wanting more bees. We can’t promise to supply nucs in this our first year, but if interested please get in touch and we’ll add you to the list. […]

Beekeepers come swarming to the Sustainability days

[…]survey last year where 4,763 beekeepers fed back to a range of topical beekeeping questions around queen rearing. Some typical feedback included: Why purchase your own queens rather than rear your own? Not enough experience (41%), not enough time (17%), to improve colony temperament (35%) and to improve colony productivity (25%) What form of assistance would help you to raise […]
Read more » Beekeepers come swarming to the Sustainability days

Strategy

[…]including Bee Improvement Programmes in the British Isles and Ireland; Supporting and developing queen-rearing operations and local/regional mating stations for the use of beekeepers in the relevant area; Supporting local Beekeeping Associations who are interested in supporting native and near-native bees; Campaigning to change beekeeping practices that work against native, near-native and locally adapted honey bees, Working with other beekeeping […]

Sustainable Bees and Queens – Cheshire

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities. Benefits of teaching apiaries. Queen rearing facility in teaching apiaries. Queen rearing as a collective exercise. Producing […]

Downloads

[…]files are used by individual beekeepers and groups to help them with their bee improvement and queen rearing activities.BIBBA gives permission to freely copy any or all of these files for personal use and also pass the files to others interested in breeding honey bees. BIBBA only asks in return that the source of these files be acknowledged.  DrawWing By Adam […]

Sustainable Bees & Queens

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities. Benefits of teaching apiaries. Queen rearing facility in teaching apiaries. Queen rearing as a collective exercise. Producing […]

Sustainable Bees & Queens – South East

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities. Benefits of teaching apiaries. Queen rearing facility in teaching apiaries. Queen rearing as a collective exercise. Producing […]

Sustainable Bees & Queens – South West

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities. Benefits of teaching apiaries. Queen rearing facility in teaching apiaries. Queen rearing as a collective exercise. Producing […]

Sustainable Bees & Queens : Midlands

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities. Benefits of teaching apiaries. Queen rearing facility in teaching apiaries. Queen rearing as a collective exercise. Producing […]

Sustainable Bees & Queens : East Anglia

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities. Benefits of teaching apiaries. Queen rearing facility in teaching apiaries. Queen rearing as a collective exercise. Producing […]

Sustainability – Bees and Queens for Everyone using low-cost, simple methods

[…]perceived problems in producing queens in the U.K. Overwintering bees and queens. Demystifying queen rearing. Simple queen rearing methods. Simple and efficient ways to produce nuclei. Suggested methods for BKAs to supply bees and queens to members/beginners. Methods for small and larger quantities.  Benefits of teaching apiaries. Producing bees and queens in teaching apiaries.  Queen rearing as a collective exercise. […]
Read more » Sustainability – Bees and Queens for Everyone using low-cost, simple methods

BIM 51 – Summer 2018

[…]Martin The Honey Badger’s Story – Mike TaylorI began to replace the Italian and Buckfast queens with queens from my best dark colonies over the years BIBBA members can download a pdf copy of the full magazine for personal […]

BIBBA Conference 2018

[…]their bees and those locally. There will be information to help beekeepers to produce their own queens from stock that suits their environment, rather than relying on buying queens, possibly imported, that may not. Other beekeeping topics to suit everyone, whatever their experience or interest. We hope to help beekeepers to understand their bees better, so they can develop management […]

Cheshire Honeybee Improvement Partnership (CHIP)- CW9

[…]and propagate the native and near native honey bees. The CHIP members have formed a collective queen rearing group and are each helping other local individuals and groups to enter into selective and practical queen rearing groups in their locality   For more information please contact    […]
Read more » Cheshire Honeybee Improvement Partnership (CHIP)- CW9

Albert Knight

[…]years.   He became the voice of BIBBA and was indefatigable in promoting the native bee, queen rearing, and BIBBA.   Apart from fulfilling his secretarial duties, he produced numerous leaflets and computer programs. In 1981, following a beekeeping tour of Germany, he was involved in the establishment of an isolated mating site at Spurn Point.   At this time, he was the […]

West Devon Bee Improvement Group

[…]experienced members to: • Assess the quality of their colonies • Identify queens suitable for queen-rearing and drone-production • Learn to graft/transfer larvae for stock improvement programmes • Consolidate desirable traits by collaborative queen-rearing • Provide nucs for local beekeepers to develop into […]

Wight Bee Improvement Group

Overview of aims of the Group:  Queen Rearing will only be carried out using IOW mongrel stock, members will be encouraged to keep records of all their own stock, using only those considered to be worthy of passing on their bloodlines. At present no drone rearing is possible due to the variety of both beekeepers and imported stock. Hopefully this […]

BIM 50 – Winter 2017

[…]having ideal conditions I have had to make do with what is available I have found that larvae for queen rearing can survive outside the hive and be transported for much longer than is usually said Winter Losses – Beowulf Cooper a necessary part of strain maintenance … SICAMM Conference – Philip Denwood Finland, from 12th-17th July 2018 Locally Adapted […]

Godolphin-Cornwall

We have been queen rearing and improving stocks of local bees since 2015, based in the medieval garden and a small more private are on Godolphin Hill, we work closely with the B4 group, CBIBBG and the Cornish Bees Trelluswell group. Bob Black Beekeepers unite to save Native Bees in Cornwall Representatives of 4 bee groups came together at […]

Course Feedback

[…]in the lecture room were stimulating and informative and proved a solid basis for the practical queen rearing demonstrations that followed on the second day, along with the improved weather. As the title implies, the course had as its focus bee improvement and its essential partner, queen rearing. However, it was very wide ranging and of value to every beekeeper […]

Countryfile – on the Rame Peninsula

[…]any reason in the spring will be removed from the area and used for resources for any newly reared queens. In this way we make sure that as many colonies as possible, in the area, are putting out ‘good’ drones. The chances of good matings of any new queens produced are then as high as possible. This process is repeated […]

East Midlands further notes

[…]them) and 4 others whose expressed an interest in joining the group. So we are in flux but very stable given the significance of moving our apiary after 50 years at the other site. On Sunday we felt at last we were settled in. It was the end of a complex and time-consuming task, especially given the pandemic restrictions and […]

Abberton Native Bee Group/ Essex 4 Bees – CO2

[…]next few years and in addition to raising new queens also focus on teaching bee improvement and queen rearing. It is as important to have good tempered, healthy bees as much as native appearance. Essex Wildlife Trust is a major landowner in Essex with 69 sites over 8,400 acres and there is a willingness to allow us access to these. […]
Read more » Abberton Native Bee Group/ Essex 4 Bees – CO2

Bee Breeding and Queen Rearing Courses UK

[…]Events There are three types of BIBBA event to help and encourage beekeepers to raise their own queens from locally adapted colonies, rather than to use imported queens that may not suit their environment, or run the risk of importing pests and diseases. BIBBA Open Days Bee Improvement For All (BIFA) days One and two day Bee Improvement Courses If […]

2 Day Bee Improvement: Preston

[…]some of the myths Delegates will leave the course with the confidence and skills to start rearing queens and developing their own bee stocks. Who is it for? This course is aimed at beekeepers who:- currently manage several colonies know the “basics” of beekeeping, i.e. the life cycles, swarming procedure of a colony, disease recognition, etc, are able to recognise […]

2 Day Bee Improvement: Preston

[…]some of the myths Delegates will leave the course with the confidence and skills to start rearing queens and developing their own bee stocks. Who is it for? This course is aimed at beekeepers who:- currently manage several colonies know the “basics” of beekeeping, i.e. the life cycles, swarming procedure of a colony, disease recognition, etc, are able to recognise […]

BIBBA Open Day. Lampeter.

[…]by simple methods (the bees often do it for you!) Making up and maintaining nuclei Introducing queens and queen cells Cost: £18/head before 13th June, £20 afterwards. Includes refreshments and lunch. Powered by […]

BIBBA Open Day. Wakefield.

[…]by simple methods (the bees often do it for you!) Making up and maintaining nuclei Introducing queens and queen cells   Cost: £18/head before 25th May, £20 afterwards. Includes refreshments and lunch. Powered by […]

BIM 49 – Spring 2017

[…]49 – Spr ing 2017 of the group, including the owner of the selected queen, can still continue queen rearing by their usual methods. How to find like thinking members? I have twenty beekeeping neighbours within two kilometres of my bees, their addresses are published in the CBKA annual report and balance sheet each year. I legged it around all […]

The Dark Bee Apis mellifera mellifera in the United Kingdom

[…]BIBBA, 31. Cooper, 18-21. “JFH”. British Bee Journal Dec 10 1925, p.519. Snelgrove, L.E. Queen Rearing. Bleadon: 3rd ed. 1966, 108-113. Adam, Brother. In Search of the Best Strains of Bees. Weierbach: Walmar Verlag 1966, 123-4. Cooper, 21-9. Ruttner, F., Milner, E. & Dews, J.E. The Dark European Honey Bee. Codnor: BIBBA 1990, 18-29. Dr. Robert Paxton; reported by Sweet, […]
Read more » The Dark Bee Apis mellifera mellifera in the United Kingdom

BIPCo 6th Annual Bee Improvement Day

[…]all those interested in improving the quality of their bees through the assessment, selection and rearing of queens and drones With guest speakers including: Roger Patterson, Deputy Chairman BIBBA * Trade Stands in attendance * Complimentary teas, coffee & biscuits * Light lunches & homemade cakes available Tickets are £8 for members and £10 for non-members for those who register […]

BIM 48 – Winter 2016/17

[…]interest. Queen raising criteria in N.E. European Russia – Anna Brandorf & Marija Ivoilova The rearing of high quality queens is an important element in bee colony reproduction. Bee Improvement – Roger Patterson One and Two Day Practical Courses BIBBA members can download a pdf copy of the full magazine for personal […]

The black bee, an increasingly rare pearl

[…]its reproduction. In the past, domesticated bees could become wild again when swarming, when the queen left the hive with half the inhabitants to found a new swarm, and conversely, they could become domestic by passing from a natural cavity to the hive. Under the current degraded ecological conditions, the fewer natural swarms no longer last as well.  Mostly, the evolution […]

Family Member

[column-half-1] If more than one person at the same address wishes to be a BIBBA member: The first person at any address will pay the full BIBBA membership of £20 but any additional persons living at the same address can join as family members for the reduced rate of £10. If two people are paying together at the same time […]

BIM 47 – Autumn 2016

[…]declined sharply, beekeepers were forced to carefully treat the wild-hive bees more carefully. . . Queen rearing on the Isle of Man – John Evans First published in Bee Improvement No.1 1998 The SMARTBEES project – Jo Widdecombe Sustainable Management of Resilient Bee Populations Conferences and Workshops – Roger Patterson One and two day Bee Improvement courses & BIFA days […]

Work with Bangor University

[…]were collected by BIBBA breeding groups and members of SCBKA and then tested by a number of BIBBA queen rearers and the Bangor researcher Elise Keller.  Elise processed the resulting data and provided a base line, in the form of her MSc. Dissertation, from which the local queen rearers were able to assess future changes in purity across the region. […]

New Approach to the Mitotype Classification

[…]black honeybee Apis mellifera mellifera L. is today the only subspecies of honeybee which is suitable for commercial breeding in the climatic conditions of Northern Europe with long cold winters. The main problem of the black honeybee in Russia and European countries is the preservation of the indigenous gene pool purity, which is lost as a result of hybridization with […]

Irene Power “Beekeeping and a Full Time Job”

[…]practical beekeeper who maintains 15 – 20 colonies, with keen interests in honey bee health and queen rearing & honey production. Lecture Title: “Beekeeping and a full time job” The age of beekeepers in recent years has lowered, with many in full time employment, possibly with young families and other interests that have a demand on leisure time. This talk […]
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Clive de Bruyn “BIBBA in the Isle of Man 40+ years ago”

[…]with the DC area above the Port St. Mary Golf course. The drone comets that formed to chase our queen sent aloft, tethered to a couple of helium balloons, remains one of the highpoints of my beekeeping career. Our efforts culminated in watching a queen being pursued and mated at head height. …much to the indifference of my five year […]
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Dorian Pritchard “Selective breeding without inbreeding; where’s the happy medium?”

[…]lines. Breeding from the best can achieve this, but this strategy and the use of “multi-breeder queens” also accumulates recessive alleles, some of which are harmful. In the single-copy, “heterozygous” state recessives are unexpressed in females, but when “homozygous” (i.e. present as two identical copies), they can cause serious detriment. In honey bees a particular problem arises from homozygosity of […]
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Keith Pierce “Apideas: Their operation and maintenance”

[…]area of the Phoenix Park and the Liffey Valley, including the gardens of suburban Castleknock. My queens are naturally open mated, but I have been flooding the vicinity of my apiary with drones from my own native dark bees. Each year I over winter more colonies of bees than I need, keeping only the best and requeening those that do […]
Read more » Keith Pierce “Apideas: Their operation and maintenance”

Eoghan Mac Giolla Coda “Producing Honey Under Difficult Conditions”

[…]variant of the dark bee provides good yields even in poor summers. Due to its conservative brood-rearing nature, the native Irish honey bee is able to respond rapidly to unpredictable and intermittent honey flows and is very thrifty with regard to stored honey. Other characteristics of the native bee that play key roles in honey production are flying behavior, temperament, […]
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Paul Cross “Development of a miniature vibration energy harvester for battery-less tracking of honey bees”

[…]their environment. To date, no technology exists to effectively track such things as foraging, queen and drone flight paths or enable the long-term evaluation of navigation loss of bees exposed to potentially harmful pesticides such as neonicotinoids. This is because the monitoring of bee movements requires effective radio-tracking in the field, which is currently constrained by transmitter size, battery life […]
Read more » Paul Cross “Development of a miniature vibration energy harvester for battery-less tracking of honey bees”

Pete Sutcliffe – “The hive as a processing centre”

[…]Branch and County Archivist. He is currently leading a county-wide working group on selective queen-rearing. Lecture Title: “The hive as a processing centre” “A hive of activity” as the saying goes! To ensure the colony survives in a healthy state, honey bees collect everything they need from the surrounding area in the form of relatively simple, readily available, natural products. […]
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The health and status of the feral honeybee population of the UK

[…]the feral population. Only 12 colonies were seen to persist for 2.5 years, although the original queen swarmed or was replaced during this time. Feral colonies were shown to be genetically similar to local managed colonies, differing, albeit significantly, by only 2.3%. The implications for feral honeybee health are explored. Feral colonies are highly introgressed and do not represent remnant […]
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Huw Evans “Electronic monitoring as a tool for better beekeeping and queen breeding”

[…]humidity, hive weight and apiary weather conditions. The data collected offers a beekeeper/queen breeder a powerful tool to examine the colony and queen conditions without disturbing the bees. Weight data can be used to calculate the “adjusted production figure” (average harvested by each apiary minus the harvest of each hive) for each individual hive in order to avoid mistakes in […]
Read more » Huw Evans “Electronic monitoring as a tool for better beekeeping and queen breeding”

Where do I find out about local groups or get support to start one?

[…]up local queen rearing groups.  click to see active groups here If you are already breeding or rearing queens with the aim of selecting for native traits but have not registered as a group we would be pleased if you would consider registering by contacting either the groups coordinator or the web master. If there is no group local to […]

Queen Rearing Timetable

[…]file was written by Angus Stokes and Albert Knight and provides an interactive way to prepare timetables for using the Jenter or Cupkit Cellplug Box. With a bit of tweaking it can be used for other methods of cell raising. Download Excel spreadsheet of Tom’s Table: […]

A Simple Method of Simultaneously Raising Queens and Producing Nuclei

[…]in An Beachaire (The Irish Beekeeper) The reader may groan and sigh, “not another queen-rearing method,” and I agree that there seems to be an endless number of ways of rearing queens, including the Miller, Hopkins, Alley, Harden and Harding methods.  Although sometimes seen as a black art, queen-rearing is an important part of beekeeping, and every beekeeper should have […]
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Improving bees by raising your own queens

[…]distribution. Queen introduction. Mating control. Some of the myths of bee improvement and queen rearing. Experience shows that each course is different, being tailored to suit the location and the needs of attendees, but including much of the above. What equipment is needed? There will be time spent at the bees, so bring clean protective clothing. It is asked that […]

Section 5.1 – Queen Rearing Methods

Photo by Roger Patterson Queen Rearing Methods There are so many techniques of queen rearing, and so much has been written about them, that it may seem unwise to add any more. Studying too many methods can be a source of much confusion and leave one overwhelmed and unsure of how to proceed. Like most things in beekeeping, the best […]

Methods for Rearing and Selection of Queens

[…]and practical beekeeping purposes. The basic conditions and different management techniques for queen rearing are described, including recommendations for suitable technical equipment. As the success of breeding programmes strongly depends on the selective mating of queens, a subchapter is dedicated to the management and quality control of mating stations. Recommendations for the handling and quality control of queens complete the […]

John Harding Queen Rearing

[…]a beekeeper rather than a keeper of bees. Everybody has their own system of beekeeping and queen rearing that suits them, often without much thought for what’s best for the honeybee, or the possibility of causing unnecessary stress to the colony. The main purpose of any system I produce is its versatility and to have an additional use so you […]

August 2022 BIBBA Monthly

[…]seeing some in three out of the four apiaries I recently used for the BIBBA Bee Improvement and Queen Rearing courses. At one of them, the first two colonies I inspected had problems. I have recently found something that is connected but slightly different in one of my colonies called Violet. As a keen amateur naturalist, I name my colonies […]

NatBIP News No8

[…]to suit your own requirements and allow you to select for the qualities that are important to you. Queen rearing Some relish the challenge of queen rearing, whilst others find it a bit daunting. Techniques described in the Guide, can be as simple as building a colony up on two brood boxes and then dividing into two, to produce a […]