Chairmans Letter – March 2019

Dear Kennet Beekeeper,

Once again I am sending out my Chairman’s newsletter a bit early, as we have our next lecture this Friday 1st March at Bishop Cannings Village Hall, SN10 2LA staring at 7.30. The talk this Friday is presented by Richard Rickets called “From Buckfast to Buckingham Palace“. Richard will be known to many of you as he was a very successful editor of The Honeybee Times and revived the magazine to what it is today – a great Wiltshire bee magazine. He is also currently one of the Beecraft editors and a member of Melksham BKA. Do come and support him and KBKA at this talk which will cover beekeeping in both the places mentioned in the title!

Thinking about the KBKA programme for 2019 you should by now have all received your copy – if you have not got a copy let me know. Please take a good look at it and note that after this Friday’s talk all future talks move to the first Wednesday in the month. Do please ensure that these events are in your diary and note that there are one or two rather well know speakers coming to Kennet – so make sure you don’t miss out on them and get the dates noted down for something to look forward to.

With all this warm weather we all need to be aware of what our bees might be up to!

First, they may have eaten most of their stores – so out you go into the apiary and do a bit of hefting to check that there is still food there – if not feed them. You can’t really over feed but if we get another very cold snap you might wish you had taken this advice. Also if the warm weather continues I think that 2019 may well be the year that we have early swarms. My beehives are very strong at the moment and if the warm weather continues I will be doing a full inspection in mid-March (or before) to check for health etc. but also for Queen cells. Just my prediction – early swarms this year. So be prepared!

I hope some of you went to the AHAT day on Saturday 23rd February. Sadly I was unable to attend, but by now you should all know what the Asian Hornet looks like.
Some of you should have been given traps with this new pheromone compound to attract hornet Queens – although I have my doubts as to how well this will work. Do use them and ensure you release any European Hornets, but if you think it is an Asian Hornet inform the GB Non-native Species Secretariat with a photo (if possible) at email Having seen them myself I would say they always look blacker than you expect.

Don’t forget you have today received and email about Royal Three Counties Show: 14-16 June 2019. Do look at all the attachments in that email and perhaps volunteer to help or enter your honey. It is well worth putting this in the diary.

I have been ask by several members if I am getting any bee packages this year. With Brexit being where it is, it is hard for anyone to say if they are importing, and at what price. If you want to register an interest let me know. I would hope they will be about £150 each.

Hope to see you at Friday’s talk.

With best wishes,

Robert Carpenter Turner

Chairman Kennet Beekeepers

Tel: – 01672 852265    email:-