In this feature Ian Fazakerley, Secretary of Louth District Beekeepers, inspires people to learn more about bees and take part in a course they have coming up.
It doesn’t look like it when you step outside at the moment but Spring is not far away! I try and cheer myself up by thinking of those warmer, drier days. It’s not all bad though, for beekeepers it is time to check out stocks and make sure they have sufficient food for the next few weeks as well as checking hives for signs of winter damage.
On more pleasant days bees can be seen flying around the hive on ‘cleansing’ flights as, contrary to popular belief, bees do not hibernate but remain active throughout the winter months within the hive; feeding on stores gathered in the previous year.
Last year we had the Tree Bumblebee arrive in large numbers. The Tree Bumblebee was first recorded in the UK down in Wiltshire in 2001 and they have spread north at a blistering pace since. This particular bee really likes to colonize bird boxes and some people seemed concerned that, mistakenly, honey bees had swarmed into their gardens. We do our best to assure people that the bees are easy going and take a fair bit of provocation before they will sting. The council no longer has pest control people to deal with wasps and bees so a lot of calls end up with members of the Louth District Beekeepers and we offer advice and assistance wherever we can but destruction of honey or bumblebees should always be a last resort. If you would like to know more about bees or even become a beekeeper yourself we run an evening course starting on March 19 and running for five weeks just outside Louth.
Please contact Julian on 01507 358838 or by email firstname.lastname@example.org