September 2022 BIBBA Monthly

September 2022 BIBBA Monthly

September 2022 BIBBA Monthly

Richard Senior
Richard Senior

During the winter months, one of the jobs that I like to get out of the way is processing all the cappings and old combs from the previous beekeeping season.

I’ve been using an old kit from Thornes for many years. Whilst this is well built, I often find that, if I have lots of cappings that I need to process, it struggles to cope. So I decided to create a new steaming system on a Yorkshire budget. Not truly Yorkshire, as I did buy one new component (sorry dad)  Click to read all about it:

Winter Wax Processing, Yorkshire Style

Scillonian Honey Bee Project - Game of Drones

The Scillonian Honey Bee Project is now in its 2nd year and evolving really well, engaging with the local community, steadely earning trust with the island's beekeepers.
More bee keepers have engaged with the Project thanks to the 'Game of Drones', a talking point on the islands by the locals and visitors, and also thanks to the recent Sunday broadcast on BBC Radio 4!
Supporting and engaging with the local schools has proved to be a real 'winner!' And the pupils have loved getting involved with the marking of drones.

Bee scientists know that honeybees can travel many kilometres to find food and mates on the mainland but we know little about how far honeybees will travel across the sea! The Isles of Scilly is an Archipelago of five inhabited islands, so we are perfectly placed for an island-wide citizen science project.

Creating an ambitious experiment together will help us answer these important questions-
How related are our honeybees to one another? – so we can make sure our honeybees are healthy and plan a bee breeding program.
How far are our honeybees willing to travel? – so we can estimate where they might be finding flowers to forage on.
How can we manage our beekeeping sustainably? – so we can work in harmony with our wild bee populations of bumblebees and solitary bees.
more info:

Thanks to the support from B 4, Pollenize, Bee craft magazine,St Marys boating, wildflower collective.
If Bibba members would like to engage and  register their meadows no matter how small on as a way to match and swap seeds.

Willie Robson at the National Honey Show

Roger Patterson will be in discussion with Willie Robson at The National Honey Show (click for programme)


Roger plans to make a flowing presentation based on the questions that have been submitted by beekeepers before the event. Here is your chance to ask Willie questions, but without having to be at the show. He won’t be identifying the origin of questions, so don’t be shy. The presentation will be recorded and will be placed online for future viewing. The text below is taken from the NHS website.

Presentation: An hour with Willie Robson
Willie Robson has been a large-scale commercial beekeeper for over 60 years, working bees in the harsh Northumberland environment, where many others would have failed long ago. To be successful in these conditions you need to observe and work with the bees, developing suitable techniques, rather than taking standard ones from books that are generally written by and for beekeepers in much more favourable conditions. Willie’s father was teaching beekeeping in the Scottish Borders, where he had learned a great deal from the people he was teaching, including W W Smith, who was then the only commercial beekeeper in Scotland. Willie learned a lot about beekeeping through going round with his father.
This presentation will feature Willie answering questions and discussing topics about his beekeeping experiences that have been submitted by beekeepers beforehand. Questions will not be taken at the show, to avoid repetition and to allow the discussion to flow. Where appropriate, some questions may be combined.

To ask questions or to raise a point, please email to  by 20th October.

Where has NatBIP News been?

Jo Widdicombe:

It has been a little while since the last issue of NatBIP News. A combination of changing personnel and the busy beekeeping season has resulted in NatBIP News getting a bit neglected, for which I apologise.

more info: NatBIP News No 9