We are sorry to announce that there will be no Scouse Honey available to buy this year. It has been a very poor year for honey production due to a combination of factors; including cold spring weather and failing queens.
A lot of hard work goes into maintaining our hives so that the bees can go about their vital work of pollinating our crops and hopefully producing a honey surplus for us to harvest. All honey will be left in the hives for the bees to ensure that they have enough food to see them through the winter.
The Scouse Honey Team
Apparently Spring is here and all’s well with the world again; except of course it’s been so cool and wet around here it’s felt more like November and to top it all we had that election result! Despite this clearly being good news for all hard working Daily Mail reading bees everywhere, ours seem to have taken the news as a personal setback and an undisguised threat to organised labour. They have been hard to motivate and on inspecting the hives it is easy to detect an all pervading, ” why should I bother” attitude among the workers. Hopefully, the election of new queens in the hives will raise spirits over the coming weeks and months and lead to a new dawn, full of warm sunny days and a world where community spirit, equality and selfless dedication to a common goal will emerge victorious.
March finally brought some warmer weather and an opportunity to check on the health of our colonies. Sadly 1 out of 3 hives didn’t make it through the winter in our apiaries in Kirkby and Old Swan and even worse, 2 out of 3 had disappeared here in Croxteth –gutted. The lucky survivors still had plenty of winter stores and the queens had begun laying again. Each hive has been given its first varroa treatment.
Varroa mites are a parasite of honey bee colonies, they are common nearly everywhere honey bees are found and have became a major western honey bee pest since the 1980’s. The mites are now the most serious pest of western honey bee colonies and one of the primary causes of honey bee decline . A western honey bee colony with Varroa, that is not treated to kill the pest, will likely die within one to three years. So it’s vital we keep them in check!
Hopefully April will bring some more settled, warmer weather just in time for Easter and The Grand National (Hot Tip Many Clouds @ 50/1 worth a bob e/w)
Welcome to our first blog of 2015 - well, actually our first blog ever.
None of us are that used to blogging, but I'm sure we will grow into it over time.
The idea of this page is to keep you all updated on the goings on at Scouse Honey HQ such as;
We will try our best to update this page at least once a month, with stories and news and images.
A nice easy start to our diary - and I suppose this is a diary - January 2015; the bees are all locked up safe and sound for the winter. We did see some of the girls out and about foraging late into December which should mean there is plenty of food for them to get through the cold months ahead.
Thanks for reading, I'll get better at this I promise...
Oh yes! Summer has arrived and all us hayfever sufferers are er… suffering. Nevertheless, there’s plenty of positives at this time of the year (unless of course you’re Greek and have to decide whether to vote Oxi or Nai). The bees have been very active and most colonies have shown signs of thinking about swarming so we have had to put swarm prevention measures in place. This entails separating the queen from the main colony and leaving them to raise a new queen from the queen cell we left them with. Already 2 colonies have raised new queens which have successfully mated with drones and are busily laying eggs. Let’s hope the other colonies are as easy to manage as this. Last weekend also saw the arrival of 2 nucs of bees from my old mates at The Honeybee Project in Crosby. One has joined us here in Croxteth and the other has gone to our apiary at Wharncliffe Allotments in Old Swan.
Apologies to everyone who has tried to order some of our honey over the last month but as we only produce a limited amount we usually sell out by Easter. Of course the honey harvest depends on how active the bees are and this in turn is dependent on the weather, so fingers crossed for a warm July and August.