Chairmans Letter – September 2019

Dear Kennet Beekeeper,

We are getting near that time of year when we begin to get our bees ready for the winter and if we are going to find any, the Asian Hornet will make itself known to us but getting caught in hornet traps or attacking our bees. This year there seems to have been little publicity about the Asian Hornet, much less than I think there should have been. But if you suspect you find one, try and photograph or catch it and go straight to the Non-Native Species website and find the AH page which is:- or contact our own AHAT coordinator, Mario Caves

Swarm collection. For the reputation of KBKA I have to stress that those collecting swarms must always offer best practice. I have heard of a swarm being collected by one of our members with no allowance being made for the flying bees – by which I mean, the beekeeper returning that evening and collecting all the bees in a box.
Please remember that your BBKA insurance covers you to collect swarms but if there is any payment made to you the insurance is invalid.

Junior members. At our last committee meeting it was decided that in future all junior memberships would be free. Hopefully, this will encourage more of our future beekeepers to become involved at an earlier age.

Wiltshire BKA has launched a splendid new website, just so much better than what we had previously. Do check it out: –

Winter feeding. Colin Taylor is again offering Ambrosia winter feed are really great prices. Put his phone number 01380 816564 in your contacts now as I am sure you will need it later. His email: – Prices are Ambrosia Fondant £18.50 per 12.5kg carton (i.e. 5×2.5kg packs) and Ambrosia syrup £18.50 per 12.5kg jerry can.

Bee Equipment insurance. You can have your bee equipment covered for as little as £12.00 per year. See attachment titled ‘Additional Insurance’ which is detailed in the BBKA information.

I have not had any direct response for someone to take over David’s job as Apiary Manager. I am sending out the Press-Gang and you may get a knock on your door! This is such an important job for KBKA. I am wondering if two people could manage it together? You must feel you have the experience, but please let me know if you are interested.

Our own KBKA Honey Show will take place on 2 October, followed only three days later by the WBKA Wiltshire Bee and Honey Day on 5 October. Please find attached the 3 forms should you wish to sell honey or products on 5th October.

Wednesday 4th September, at Bishops Cannings Village Hall SN10 2LA at 7.30 is our next meeting and first talk for the autumn. We have Dave Bonner on Beekeeping Adventures in Uganda. Dave is a Master Beekeeper, has been going to Uganda every year since 2008 for Bees Abroad and is retired bee inspector. Will be good hope to see you there.

Thursday 5th September at The Coronation Hall Alton Barnes SN8 4LB is a talk that will be of interest to most beekeepers. Susan Clarke on “Marsh Fritillary and other Butterflies on the Marlborough Downs.” I knew nothing about this rare butterfly we have on the hills here, until I heard this talk – just as fascinating as our bees. Tickets from Alton Arts £8.50 full details below.

Remember to prepare for the Honey Shows.

With best wishes,

Robert Carpenter Turner

Chairman Kennet Beekeepers

Tel: – 01672 852265    email:-