A swarm of bee going into a top bar hive

A swarm of bee going into a top bar hive

Event: Introduction to bee-centred natural beekeping
Venue/location: Hellen’s garden festival, Much Marcle, Ledbury, Herefordshire
Spealkers: Donald Broughton & Temi Odurinde
Aspects of natural beekeeping covered:

What is natural beekeeping?

What you need to be a natural beekeeper
• The mind-set of a natural beekeeper
• A hive (Top bar hive favoured by natural beekeepers)
• Full beekeeping suit with veil & latex or leather gloves
• Fine water spray (smoker, not favoured by most natural beekeepers)
• Feather or soft brush
• Long knife or other flat metal for breaking propolis
• Bees!!
– Top Bar Hive
– Demo around a top bar hive

How to acquired you first bee colony
• Talk to other natural beekeepers
• Talk to local beekeepers
• Hive baiting
• Advertise swarm collection on local beekeeping sites

Working with the bees
Sensitivity & listening to the bees
Treatment or let nature take its cause?
Minimal intrusion

The ideal for a natural beekeeper is to leave the honey to the bees. But if you must harvest honey, here are good ways to do so:
• Take some in the Spring
• Arrange you hive in a way that there will be no eggs or broods in the cone.
How to ensue you there are no eggs or brood in the cone:
– In the length of a top bar hive, you start at one end, and as you come to the other end, there will be one or two cones clear of broods.
Have a follower board and put a queen extractor.

Natural beekeeping not for you? You can still help the bees
– Plant bee friendly plants
– Sowe wild flower seeds
– Some known bee friendly flowers and plants include: