Apis mellifera mellifera

Apis Musings by Walrus

I’ve been thinking about bees and beekeeping. Most people who know me have figured out that bees occupy 95% of my brain, although other things sometimes make an appearance. Arsenal FC once took up much more brain than it now does; it was downhill after Vieira left. I […]

a swarm of bees on a fence

Let’s Talk About Swarms

I’ve written about swarming quite a bit in the past. I’m not sure how many people who read my stuff are beginners, but I’m going to assume it’s not the majority. You probably all have your ways of dealing with preventing swarms or controlling them once the bees […]

Map of my travels

News from UK and CA

Many people, myself included, find spring to be their favourite season. The arrival of snowdrops, then crocuses, blackthorn and early blossoms together with frantic pollen-collecting activity by the bees is a welcome antidote to lockdown. Sometimes beekeepers get a little too excited and forget that we can still […]

red blood cells

In The Wars

I’ve been in the wars lately, which is why I haven’t written much on here. Plus, of course, it becomes increasingly difficult to find new ways to say things as each season passes. As we enter spring, it’s time to talk about avoiding starvation, first inspections, checking for […]

White Clover Flower

Timing and Flows

Sometimes we look at life on our beautiful planet with wonder and awe at the incredible way in which it all fits together so perfectly. Perhaps some people with a religious or spiritual leaning can see a guiding hand at work. Other times, bad things happen; floods or […]

The Fight Continues

It won’t be long until spring has sprung and beekeepers across the land start to open hives and assess how their bees did over the winter. I could be more cynical than the average walrus, but I strongly suspect that most beekeepers are like gamblers with winter loss […]

Clover field - Canterbury Pains

Q&A plus old Buckfast Pics

I’ve been under the weather recently so haven’t managed to post anything for a while. Here’s a little bit of me answering questions after a bee talk: Hopefully I’ll be firing on all cylinders soon – I’ve got some research papers on winter brood to read Also, I’m […]

brussels sprouts

To Sprout or Not?

I realise that I may be unusual in this, but I’m not a massive fan of social media. I’m a ‘baby boomer’ with two kids of the ‘millennial’ generation and one who is ‘Generation Z’. I’m cool with email and the world wide web; I can’t see the […]

Chart 3 'Caged Queen' method

Charting Brood Breaks

Following on from my article about using brood breaks to help with varroa management, I’m going to get into ‘death by charts’ territory today. Regular readers will know that I’m a big fan of Randy Oliver’s spreadsheet model, which can be tweaked to reflect one’s colonies and treatment […]

Varroa Mite

Brood Breaks to Control Varroa

Varroa mites have been a big problem for honey bees in most of Europe and North America for thirty or more years. Many colony deaths stem from varroa and associated viruses, and many beekeepers probably don’t even know that mites were the culprit. After all, who does mite […]