A few titbits

I forgot to post a photo I took from Karin Alton’s talk – of her wearing a human-sized varroa mite she had made, in proportion to the size the mite is on a bee. Imagine carrying one of these around sucking the life out of you all day.

Karin Alton wearing a human sized varroa mite

Karin Alton wearing a human sized varroa mite

Last week I gave a presentation to some beginner beekeepers on the Ealing & District Association annual beginner’s course. I was quite nervous but enjoyed myself. I had been asked to talk about progressing with beekeeping through the British Beekeepers’ Association (BBKA) Basic Assessment and Module exams.

If you’re thinking of taking any of the BBKA exams, the presentation might be of interest to you. I’ve made it available online as an interactive presentation at Progressing with Beekeeping and a pdf version is here.

 

Lastly, I enjoyed this month’s BBKA News, especially an article by Julian Grazebook, Dorset BKA (p15-16). Julian’s account of beginning beekeeping includes this ode to cake:

“Beekeeping is not a frenetic hobby, but I continue to be surprised by the large number of volunteers dedicated to sharing their Saturday afternoons instructing beginners. Perhaps it is their love of cakes which the students are encouraged to bring to each lesson as a sort of penance. I do not know if this is a unique Dorset trait or if it is shared by all beekeepers, but I have eaten more varieties of cake in the last year than during the rest of my life.”

Ealing beekeepers appreciate a bit of cake too Julian, you are not alone!

Pistachio & cardamom cake

Pistachio & cardamom cake

About Emily Scott

I am a UK beekeeper living in Ealing, west London. I have been keeping bees in the Ealing Beekeepers Association’s local apiary since 2008 and created this blog as a record for myself of my various beekeeping related disasters and - hopefully - future successes. Busy taking the British Beekeeping Association module exams too!
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18 Responses to A few titbits

  1. Cake is only part of it…. 🙂

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  2. Isn’t everything better with cake? Makes me want to take up beekeeping…

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    • Emily Heath says:

      Mmm… beekeeping is hungry work (all that trying to puzzle out what the bees are up to) and so cake and tea is much needed afterwards. It tastes better for being eaten outdoors too, especially on one of those rare fine British summer days.

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  3. After Dorset’s AGM last Sunday where I tried chocolate and Guinness cake, I brought home a doggy bag with half of a chocolate fruit cake and lots of slices of a coffee cream cake. It’s lasting well.

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  4. cindy knoke says:

    The mite looks creepy, the cake fab!

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  5. To the uninitiated the message seems to be “Beekeeping = a piece of cake”…

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  6. disperser says:

    I want me one of them mites . . . people would give me a wide berth . . .

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  7. That large mite that Karin made for demonstration is scary. I agree, if I was a bee I would figure out a way to get those things off me! Yep, cake is better for every affair, especially those made with honey. Did you read that bee venom is being used to kill the AIDS virus? Fascinating study. I saw it online yesterday. There is never an end to the miracles of bees.

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  8. The mite is horrifying. It’s bad enough watching the little *#$! wallow around in the powdered sugar. Can’t imagine being attacked by one. Cake hasn’t caught on here but I promise if I ever do any sort of organized gathering of beekeepers there will be at least one!

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    • Emily Heath says:

      I was told by a bee inspector that the extra evil thing is that the mites release pheromones that make the adult bees unaware of their sinister passengers. Not sure how that works, but it explains why they’re not all constantly biting the mites off each other.

      Yes, you must have cake when beekeepers gather!

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  9. karcuri13 says:

    Wow, that mite is scary. It would work great for a horror movie.

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