Mentions in the factsheets
Alex Innes joined Jim at the beehives to talk about progress so far this year, and Alex had brought along 3 different varieties of honey to show us. Each was different according to the different honey flows or food sources which the bees had consumed. The three were oil seed rape (white and thick), wildflower blossom (yellow and runny) and lime tree (greeny/yellow and runny). Alex explained that different bees were attracted to different flowers so there are many different varieties of honey. Bell heather honey would be a later variety and much sought after.
Alex added a new ‘super’ (layer) to the Beechgrove hive a few weeks ago as the bees had been so busy that the lower down super was almost full - if you don’t add a super then you run the risk of the bees becoming so overcrowded that they will swarm. Alex explained that he had visited Beechgrove a couple of days ago to insert a board in the bottom of the first super to stop the bees getting back into this layer so it can be removed.
The frames in the second super were heavy and loaded with honeycomb and honey and you could see easily that one frame was bulging with capped sealed honey. One of the aims of checking the hive at this time of year is to ensure it is healthy. In particular, checks should be carried out for the varroa mite, which can cause a bee colony to collapse. For further information please check out the DEFRA website- https://www.gov.uk/bee-health.