Welwyn news - June 2012

by Peter Mathews

Dodging a determined bee in the garden, Lieva’s husband Andy took a nasty fall resulting in him lying flat on the ground completely paralysed. The good news is that the ambulance arrived in 3 minutes and rushed him to Addenbrooks where they pinned everything that could be pinned. He had broken a couple of vertebras trapping the spinal nerve. Only three days later, Mike Goodhew from across the way called Lieva before setting off to visit Andy in hospital only to be told that Andy was home again and walking about.
We wish Andy a speedy and full recovery.

Whilst on an injury theme......over the years too many members have been forced to give up beekeeping as a result of a bad back. Take care when lifting heavy loads. Keep your back straight when lifting and bend your legs. When carrying supers, keep them close to your body. Where possible keep loads light - use small boxes for delivering honey. Wait for help with heavy lifts.

Once again we had a very enjoyable day with Peter Heath. Although the weather was not the usual hot and sunny day we have come to expect, it was still a dry day after a very wet week. We visited 8 apiaries and something like 20 colonies. There was an excellent turnout at each stop with people joining and leaving through the day.
No serious problems but we did see:-

  • Chalk brood— hive needs re-queening as this is a generic tendency to fungal infection.
  • Brood Laying Queens—again the colony needs re-queening. This is likely to be a common problem this year and is a reflection of the wet weather. Virgin queens need to mate within a week, and this needs a fine day.

With the cold weather, honey from OSR needs to come off fairly quickly before it crystallises in the comb. You need to extract as soon as you take off the supers. Honey will set faster once it is off the hive. Keep an eye on your bees after taking off their stores the weather continues to be wet and we are in the ‘June gap’. Be prepared to feed again in the coming weeks.
Many thanks to everyone taking part with special thanks to those providing refreshments. And a big thank you to John Peacock for organising a terrific day.
Stefan’s hives— well, only half of them, an impressive collection after only a year of beekeeping.
Huge thanks for everyone coming along to Bee World at the Herts Show in Redbourn.
Saturday was wet, and Sunday was very wet. The new start time of 8.30am was not too popular. Just how many people do you expect on a wet Sunday morning? The Jubilee Celebrations on the Thames did not help. Sales on the Saturday were just about double those of those on Sunday as were the numbers of visitors.
Special thanks goes to Phill for organising this event for the second year.

Saturday Team
Sunday Team
More about Bee World can be found here.


  • Honey Works Visit on Sunday, 24th June
  • Knebworth House Country Show, 11,12th August—organiser Peter Folge, setting up on the 10th
  • Hatfield House Country Show 17, 18, 19th August—organiser Peter Mathews, dropping off on the 16th.

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