SDBKALogo75x72x32col   SDBKA Bulletin #42:  19th January 2017

All About Kit, Monday 30th January.

A great chance for new beekeepers to find out what the options are for equipment they will need. We'll be showing basic examples  of hives and frames, beesuits, gloves and tools, extraction equipment etc. and discussing some of the alternative options.  Our panel of experts will be ready to answer any questions (well most questions). This is the time to be thinking about what to aquire, not when your bees are arriving - or departing. We are also very keen for those of you who have made your own adaptations or cunning devices to bring them along and show the rest of us. Everyone will be interested in these so have a think about what you've got and bring it. Portability is an issue though so no warming cabinets made from chest freezers please.

Books, Books, Books.

If you want some reading on beekeeping to while away the dark nights there is plenty to choose from; hundreds, probably thousands.  The BBKA website has reviews of some of the most recent. There are some very in depth and technical publications, which are fascinating, and expensive, while for the beekeeping beginner a relatively simple basic practical guide is sometimes more useful, such as Beekeeping; a practical guide, by Roger Patterson, Keeping Bees by Vivian Head, or something with a bit of humour like Bill Turnbull's Confessions of a Bad Beekeeper. A sense of humour is essential for beekeeping. However, before you splash out, why not have a look at some of the books in our association library. You can borrow any of the books in it for as long as you like, or until someone else wants it, for free. There are 80 publications, the list is attached or can be found on our website. If you want to borrow anything, or would like to look through what we've got, let me know.

Annual Dinner at the Downe Arms, Saturday 18th February.

It's filling up. We can still get a few more in but this is the last call. Let me know ASAP if you have not yet booked but would like to come. £10 deposit. Menu attached.

Spring Conference in York, Saturday 25th March.

This is an annual event run by the Yorkshire Beekeepers Association and usually provides a very enjoyable and informative day out. There is a full programme of talks. The one that catches my eye this year is 'Flying with Bees – showing how bees aviate, navigate and communicate.' The programme and booking form are attached. This is the nearest 'grand event' by a long way so if you'd like to see what these kind of do's are like this is the one to try. The price of £25 includes refreshments and a decent lunch.

  

Best wishes
Mick Johnston (01723 850041)
Secretary of Scarborough and District Beekeepers Association

SDBKALogo75x72x32col   SDBKA Bulletin #41:  9th January 2017

2017 Winter Programme, First Meeting Monday 16th January.

Get your 2017 beekeeping year off to a positive start by coming to the first of our Winter discussion meetings. See an excellent video 'All About Bees'(note change from advertised subject), find out how everyone else got on last year and pick the brains of the expert's for tips for next year. 7.00 at St Catherine's Hospice Training Block, Throxenby Lane, Scarborough, YO12 5RE. tea, biscuits & raffle. All are welcome but there is a £2.50 admission for Non-members. If you are new to us and haven't been to one of these before get in touch with me for more info or directions. It's very informal and you will be very welcome.

All About Kit, Monday 30th January.

This is a great chance for new beekeepers to find out what the options are for equipment they will need. We'll be looking at hives and frames, beesuits, gloves and tools, extraction equipment etc. This is the time to be thinking about what to aquire, not when your bees are arriving - or departing. We are also very keen for those of you who have made your own adaptations or cunning devices to bring them along and show the rest of us. Everyone will be interested in these so have a think about what you've got and let me know what you can bring. Get in touch if you are not sure.

Winter Sales.

Talking of getting kit, Thornes, Bee Equipment  and Maisemore all have winter sales on at the moment and no doubt there are others. You need to judge for yourself whether sale items are bargains. If you are new to beekeeping be warned. It's easy to spend a lot of money on equipment. Don't rush into buying a lot of new stuff but do spend time now thinking about what you really need, look at the online catalogues and researching prices. And come to the meeting on 30th January and ask questions. There will be more sales later in the year.

Starvation Risk.

The National Bee Unit has issued a bee starvation warning. They advise that in some areas bee colonies are running out of stored food already. This is due to the mild Autumn which resulted in bees remaining active late in the year and therefore consuming their stored food supplies more rapidly at a time when they couldn't forage to replace it. It doesn't mean all colonies are starving and I have not seen any info specific to our area. However it is a reminder to make sure that your bees have enough food. Note to new beekeepers, do not open up the brood box to check. You may get an indication by testing the weight of the hive by gently lifting one side a fraction, just enough to feel the weight. If it feels light they definitely need feeding with fondant ASAP and then check regularly, say every two weeks, to see how quickly the fondant is going and top up if necessary. If in doubt feed fondant anyway.

  

Best wishes
Mick Johnston (01723 850041)
Secretary of Scarborough and District Beekeepers Association

SDBKALogo75x72x32col   SDBKA Bulletin #40:  30th December 2016

Annual Dinner - Book Now !

Our 2017 Annual Dinner is at the Downe Arms, Wykeham on Saturday 18 February, meeting there at 6.30 for dinner at 7.00. The menu is attached. Please book your places now or as soon as you can by replying to this email. £10 deposit per head to be paid to me whenever is convenient. We need to pre-order to keep the price down but there is no rush for that. Our Dinner is very informal, beesuits are optional. All members and partners are very welcome but you should be aware that there is a high risk that bees will be discussed. 

Best wishes
Mick Johnston (01723 850041)
Secretary of Scarborough and District Beekeepers Association

SDBKALogo75x72x32col   SDBKA Bulletin #39:  23rd December 2016

Honey Fair Winners.

Our new style Honey Fair was a great success. Much honey, cake and mead was consumed and as far as I can remember it was a great night. Overall winners were Lillian and Kevin Cole. We'll definitely be doing this again.

2017 Winter Programme.

The programme is attached. Meetings start on Monday 16 January with a fascinating video on the origins and history of beekeeping. Highlights of the programme are our President Dr. Henry Kaye with a talk on strains of honey bee and breeding for characteristics and Dr Mathew Helbert on bee sting allergies. Your Officers and Committeee look forward to seeing you all in the New Year.

North East Region Bee Inspector's Annual Report.

The report for 2016 produced by our Regional Bee Inspector Ivor Flatman has been published. These reports are well worth reading. They give an overview of how the season was for honey production, the latest position on diseases and pests and some interesting stats on colony losses. Last year the winter floods had a big impact on beekeepers in some parts of the region. Winter colony loss was 22% in North Yorkshire but 60% in Notts County. Click This to download the full report. It's also attached. The Bee Inspector for our area will again be Adrian Wilford  adrian.wilford@apha.gsi.gov.uk  07775 119444. Note that Bee Inpectors do not start their role until 1st April.

YBKA 2017 Events.

The Calendar of events organised by the Yorkshire Beekeepers Association is attached. Thre Spring Policy Conference, open to all members, is at Harrogate on 25th February.

  

Best wishes for Christmas and the New Year,
Mick Johnston (01723 850041)
Secretary of Scarborough and District Beekeepers Association

SDBKALogo75x72x32col   SDBKA Bulletin #38:  4th November 2016

New Chairman.

The AGM elected Stephen Muchow as Chairman. The Branch President, Henry Kaye, warmly thanked Alan Walker for his work as Chair over the last three years in particular for the new initiatives he has helped the Branch to develop. The Committee thanked him for the biscuits. Alan had served the maximum three years permitted under the Branch Rules. Other Officers and the Committee remained the same. The position of Education Officer is therefore still vacant. Do let me know if you would like to have a go at this.

Scarborough Honey Fair, 28th November.

Time to get your entries ready. We want plenty of goodies to sample and don't forget you all get a chance to taste and vote for class winners. It's a bit of fun so do your best to bring an entry.  It can be your grottiest honey or your best, your favourite honey cake or biscuit recipe or pretty much anything you can produce with a whiff of bee product in it. And why not bring bring a friend? Any and all are invited. The entry form which sets out the classes is attached.

Provisional Winter Programme.

The provisional programme was included in the Secretary's Report, attached. The dates are fixed but some of the details of speakers and subjects are to be confirmed.

YBKA September Newsletter.

You can view it or download it Online. Apologies for the delay. This was partly due to it being withdrawn and not re-issued until October. The number of issues was questioned at our AGM. I have looked into this and can confirm that the Editor, Chris Hardy, plans four issues a year, a reduction from the previous monthly issues. This year's issues have been March, June and September. Chris welcomes contributions such as news, articles or photos from all Yorkshire beekeepers. If you have anything you'd like to see in the Newsletter just send it direct to Chris at oldsalmon@gmail.com  .As before the September Issue will be printed and posted to SDBKA members who do not have access to email.

YBKA Annual General Meeting, 26th November.

Agenda Attached. Guest speaker Howard Pool, Chairman of the BBKA Finance Committee, will outline the current economic and strategic aims of the BBKA for the next 3 years. On the other hand there is an excellent free lunch. These meetings are open to all members and all are very welcome. It's a fair way to Harrogate so transport sharing is a good idea. Let me know if you'd like a lift.

  

Best wishes,
Mick Johnston (01723 850041)
Secretary of Scarborough and District Beekeepers Association