From April until July each year, the Isle of Wight Beekeepers’ Association receives many calls about bee swarms, which it is happy to collect.
Swarming is a natural instinct for honeybees for a number of reasons; primarily that it ensures the survival of the colony by dividing it. Roughly half the bees remain in the hive with a new queen while the remainder take off with the old queen to found a new colony.
Soon after leaving the hive, the swarm settles in a dense cluster while scouts fly off to search for a new nest site. Once a site is agreed, the whole swarm takes off for its new home. The cluster can remain in one place for quite some time until a new site is found.
Although the sight and sound of thousands of bees can seem alarming, a swarm is rarely dangerous unless provoked. It is best to stand back and watch, and contact the IWBKA’s swarm co-ordinator, Dave Cassell. One of our experienced beekeepers can come and safely collect the swarm.
By calling us, you are helping these amazing creatures survive and your help will be greatly appreciated.
For more information phone Dave Cassell 07919244080
Are they honeybees? Even a small swarm will consist of several thousand bees but fewer than this are likely to be bumblebees or wasps.
About the Quarr Teaching Apiary
The Isle of Wight Beekeepers Association Teaching Apiary officially opened last month and is located at Quarr Abbey. In 2010, the Chapter asked the association to take over the running of their apiary and in return it was able to install its own hives and use the apiary as a teaching facility, helping new beekeepers with basic, practical skills
Image courtesy Jon Oakley, Hampshire & IW Wildlife Trust
The Isle of Wight Beacon's gardening expert, Mike Santer, explains how to make the most of growbags.
Gardening can be an environmental stimulus and therapy in its own right and a new community gardening project aims to offer the benefits of this activity to people with extra needs.
Someone mentioned to me recently that they thought F1 hybrid seeds were the result of genetic modification – this is a myth
What will this year bring us?
Chillerton couple Candice and Frank Quinton's "Pirates" scooped first prize in the third Scarecrow Festival. …continue
A Red Jet and a yacht collided this afternoon (Friday) as the high-speed vessel was leaving Cowes for Southampton. …continue
Raising the standards of child protection and education will be a top priority for the new-look Isle of Wight Council. …continue
Speeding motorists are being educated about the dangers of their actions by volunteers taking part in a police scheme on the Isle of Wight. …continue
The Isle of Wight’s oldest theme park is celebrating its 170th anniversary this bank holiday weekend. …continue
Staff at Osborne House are celebrating what would have been the birthday of Queen Victoria. …continue