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[…]method. It’s time to learn something old to help keep the craft of beekeeping alive. Small-scale queen rearing is needed more than ever to overcome the increasing number of queen imports into the UK and their genetic impact on the locally adapted and native bees. For many, weak eyes and trembling hands make the idea of larval transfer via grafting […]

Sandringham Report 2021

[…]This did somewhat better than the JH unit for a while. We also split a colony to provide a queenless queen cell starter unit; this worked well initially but like the other two units failed to start a single graft cell when we introduced grafts on 16th August. It is not clear why this should have been so, but the […]


[…]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 this incredible hobby. Our approach to most things is “Keep it simple”. Live @ the Hive Live outside broadcasts of hive inspections and apiary activities. Recordings available on youtube, […]


[…]and sustainable future for our beekeeping ...READ MORE The use of imported queens may provide temporary relief to issues of quality in our bees but have not provided stability within the population as a whole ... BIBBA Opposes the Importation of Honey Bees and Queens for these 15 reasons Education and Training eLearning Course Beekeeping is fun! And with our […]

Why do the bees rear so many drones?

[…]them really well so that they are strong and virile and can outdo the others in the chase after queens, which is the competition to pass on the genes of the queen that has produced them. We say that the bees love their drones, but it’s that selfish gene again. The success of the bees over millions of years has […]

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 […]

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 […]

BOBBI Spring 2022 Newsletter

[…]So this year we have decided to limit the number of full hives to 2 starter/finisher hives and 2 queen castles housing our AMM breeder queens which have come through the winter reasonably well. In addition, we will keep 20 No. 3 by 3 British national mating hives here.  The Drone Apiary will house 20 colonies which will be both […]

A Simple Method of Simultaneously Raising Queens and Producing Nuclei

[…]starter and finisher colonies). Transfer larvae from the selected breeder queen. Distribute queen cells (or queens) to mating nuclei. Distribute mated queens. Most methods involve converting a full-sized colony into a cell raiser by either removing the queen or by physically separating the cell-raising portion of the colony from the queen.   In contrast, in the Vorstman method, the cell raiser […]
Read more » A Simple Method of Simultaneously Raising Queens and Producing Nuclei

NatBIP News No9

[…]from aggression in that colony, but we should also consider that the drones produced by that queen could mate with new queens in that area resulting in further hybridisation of the local population. This hybridisation of our local bees makes bee improvement in our area more difficult, as hybrids do not breed true and, therefore, make selection and improvement a […]

November 2022 BIBBA Monthly

[…]identify pure Norman black bee queens and these individuals are then used to breed more black bee queens (queen bees develop when they are fed ‘royal jelly’ a special food, when they are at maggot stage.) The black bee queens are then sent out to members of the association, who promise not to use hives with other bees within a […]

Steve Rose Queen Rearing

[…]to the bees below. Day 3 or 4 – One Day after grafting. Remove the plastic film (leaving the queen excluder in place) so that the queen pheromones have normal access to the box again. Download pdf of full article:Queen Rearing Method – Steve Rose July […]

Methods for Rearing and Selection of Queens

[…]and quality control of mating stations. Recommendations for the handling and quality control of queens complete the queen rearing section. The improvement of colony traits usually depends on a comparative testing of colonies. Standardized recommendations for the organization of performance tests and the measurement of the most common selection characters are presented. Statistical methods and data preconditions for the estimation […]

Queen Rearing Timetable

This Microsoft XL 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: […]

John Harding Queen Rearing

[…]to the two main bodies is limited to normal inspections The nuclei can be split, and given a queen cell when queen rearing is finished It is a small enough system to possibly have in your own garden It is never queenless so never angry, unless you are doing something wrong Frames with bees can be interchanged between towers Queen […]

Find, Mark & Clip the Queen

[…]and look carefully to ensure that one of her legs is not being cut off as well. If this occurs the queen will be superseded. The queen uses her forelegs as a caliper to measure the diameter of each cell before she lays in it. This determines whether a fertile female egg or an unfertilised male egg is laid, depending […]

NatBIP News No13

[…]are introduced to; there is a knock-on effect on the local population. Drones produced by imported queens will mate with new queens in the area, perpetuating our randomly mixed stock. The net result is an unstable genetic mix, often with undesirable qualities. This makes selection and improvement of our bees slow and difficult, as hybrids do not breed true, producing […]

NatBIP News No12

[…]approach through the National Bee Improvement Programme (NatBIP). Achieving good matings for our queens The more queens we raise from selected stock, the more ‘good’ drones will be produced, and the more ‘good’ drones in an area, the better our chances of satisfactory matings for our newly produced queens. As small-scale beekeepers, we can increase our influence by working with […]