Colonsay’s Honeybee Reserve given international acclaim

[Article from the August 2019 newsletter]

World leading honeybee researcher Professor Tom Seeley from Cornell University, Mass. U.S.A. recently honoured Colonsay’s Black Bee Reserve with a two-day visit to study at first-hand the behaviour of our native honeybee, Apis mellifera mellifera, and also to learn about the conservation work, breeding and management systems being carried out by the island beekeeper, Andrew Abrahams.

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SNHBS member, Martin Leahy, becomes International Young Beekeeper 2019

Many of you will know by now that Martin Leahy, a member of Tarland Bee Group, won the title of International Young Beekeeper 2019 at the competition held recently in Slovakia.  Martin is a member of SNHBS and believes at least some of his success at the International Meeting of Young Beekeepers (IMYB) is attributable to his attendance at SNHBS events. Continue reading “SNHBS member, Martin Leahy, becomes International Young Beekeeper 2019”

SNHBS at the Royal Highland Show – June 2019

With the agreement of the SBA’s Events Committee, a small area of the Honey Tent at this year’s Royal Highland Show was made available to the Scottish Native Honey Bee Society for a promotional stand.  In the three to four weeks before the show, the trustees put together a presentation to fill the allocated space.  Our stand proved to be good enough to attract Countryfile presenter, Ellie Harrison, who stopped by for this promotional photo opportunity with SNHB trustee, Sandy Scott.

Scottish Native Honey Bee Society Annual Meeting – 30 March 2019

Over 70 members attended our 3rd Annual Meeting (again at  Loch Leven Community Campus, Kinross), renewing friendships and meeting fellow beekeepers who shared their passion for the native honey bee. Andrew Abrahams and Dylan Elen were our guest speakers while Gavin Ramsay (SNHBS chair) gave the latest news on the Conservation Project and led the business meeting.

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Cheviot Breeding Group’s queen-rearing day with Kate Atchley

Cheviot Breeding members, joined by East Lothian, Edinburgh & Peebles beekeepers, met to learn more about the raising of queens, led by Kate Atchley.

A lovely sunny day greeted the eight participants of the Queen rearing course on the 7th June at Roxburgh in the Scottish Borders. After the initial meeting and greeting it was down to work. A quantity of young worker bees were required to make up mating nucs. Kate has a nifty way to get them off the super frames and into a bucket without too many escaping!  [See header photo] Continue reading “Cheviot Breeding Group’s queen-rearing day with Kate Atchley”

North East Bee Breeding Group’s First Meeting 2019

The North East of Scotland has a long history of beekeeping and a large number of active beekeepers organised into associations at local and regional level.  In the 70s and into the 80s the so-called Aberdeenshire “Maud” strain of bee was discovered as having native bee characteristics and traits, and lineages from this strain were spread far and wide around Scotland. It seems appropriate therefore that the North East now has a group interested in the conservation and breeding of Apis mellifera mellifera.

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Scottish Native Honey Bee Conservation Project

Do you have dark native honey bees?

Do you think that you may have Scottish native honey bees?  Are you interested in helping their recovery in Scotland?  Would you like a chance to have them DNA tested?

We are seeking input from all beekeepers in Scotland to help find – and ultimately propagate – examples of the native honey bee.  If your bees, or the bees of other local beekeepers you collaborate with, are dark brown without significant banding, then please consider submitting photos for our crack team of assessors to investigate.  Scotland is divided into six regions with a local contact point (or Local Curator) who will guide you through the process.  Click here for instructions on how to participate in the SNHBS Conservation Project.

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