Airborne Honey at Another Level

Bee Hives in New Zealand

When I drove down to the Headquarters of Airborne Honey in Leeston on New Zealand’s South Island, it was a scorching hot Summer’s day, not unlike today’s weather six months later here in the UK. I’m on my second summer this year, which is excellent! Airborne Honey is owned and run by Peter Bray, who…

Sweat and Honey

smoking-cat-with-honey

We are having an actual Summer here in the UK this year, which is a very welcome, if unexpected, treat. Most beekeepers seem to be reporting that it’s a good year for honey. I always find that most of my honey comes off a handful of big colonies – the ones that grew fast and…

A Tale of Two Apiaries

Pumpkin Patch

Yeah, that’s right, I’m a big shot with two apiaries. None of that amateurish one apiary nonsense. My second apiary, which is in an orchard at Red House Farm in Dunham Massey, is only just getting going. It currently has just three colonies on it; two good sized hives and a nucleus hive (nuc). The…

A Legendary Bee has Died

Mating apiary

In the Winter of 2017, I met Murray McGregor, owner of Denrosa Apiaries, based in Coupar Angus, Scotland and was delighted to be able to spend over a day with him. He carefully chooses his words and takes his time answering questions, making sure that his encyclopaedic knowledge, based on decades of experience, is passed…

Argyle and Walrus

English Cream Tea

I’m sat in the luxurious lounge of Anchorage House, Tighnabruaich, gazing across a narrow stretch of blue/grey sea to the rolling hills of Bute, with my laptop perched upon a cushion on my knee. It is a favourite family holiday location; the natural beauty of Argyle and Bute is staggering. The house where we stay…

Are Your Queens Majestic?

Actors from the Crown and Victoria

Anybody who has been reading my blog for a while will no doubt form the view that I am obsessed with queens. I’m talking about queen honey bees, not what you were thinking, you smutty vermin. The queen bee is not the ruler of her hive, as some may think. I would say that she…

Busy as a Beekeeper

Horse Chestnut Tree In Flower by Renoir

Here in my part of England, the weather is currently absolutely perfect, and we have shaken off the oppressive depressed state induced by a long cold Winter followed by a miserable Spring. It is incredible how rapidly Nature responds to such changes. We went from skeletal trees and frozen ground to an explosion of green,…

Velutina has a touch of Latina

Penelope Cruz Getty Images

Main image Penelope Cruz, (c) Getty from here On my recent trip to Brittany, I saw my first Asian Hornets (Vespa Velutina). They were queens trying to establish nests early in the season, and even though I’d only seen photographs before I instantly recognised the large dark insects, which dart about making a deep hum…