Turriff Show 2018

By Ian Mackley

The Turriff show was its usual eclectic mixture of opportunity to view and buy everything from Orthotic Insoles through to that monster tractor you have always wanted. The new ADBKA double gazebo got its first public outing between the National Fostering Agency and a stand selling clothes for dogs! This year we decided to be located outside amongst the trade stands rather than in the Industrial Tent; the move, and the gazebo, were thought to be successes with a steady stream of visitors throughout the show. We were certainly doing better business than the ‘grand-daughter of Gipsy Rose Lee’ in her caravan opposite! Continue reading “Turriff Show 2018”

Visit to Denrosa Apiaries

By Ian Mackley

After last month’s report on the Queen Rearing course [see the June 2018 Newsletter, page 3], I seem to be at risk of becoming ADBKA’s special correspondent on queen rearing. Of course, like many journalists, I can write about a subject but am so far much less adept at actually doing it!

Well over 20 ADBKA members enjoyed glorious weather as we visited one of Murray McGregor’s queen rearing apiaries at his home near Coupar Angus. Murray owns and runs Scotland’s largest commercial beekeeping operation – Denrosa – and has an extensive queen rearing programme to support his 3,000 production hives.

Continue reading “Visit to Denrosa Apiaries”

Ian Mackley

Meet the ADBKA Committee Members

17-08 Iceland 620_edit-1Twenty years ago, if anyone had said I’d become a beekeeper I would have thought they didn’t know me very well.  It would never have crossed my mind or compared with my other interests.  Then one day my daughter came home from junior school with a children’s book about honeybees. That caught my wife’s attention and she found out about, and started to attend, the ADBKA introductory course. However, she wasn’t so keen on diseases and pests so I said I would attend that week so that we at least had the knowledge in the house. I ended up completing the course (and in fact did it all again the following year), but although I was interested I still wasn’t entirely sure
beekeeping was for me. Continue reading “Ian Mackley”

Skep-making workshop – November, 2017

‘The first bit is the hard part’, instructor Bryce Reynard announced as six ADBKA members gathered for a workshop in the noble art of skep-making.  The tables were covered in straw. Bales of string and alarmingly large needles were ready for use. Bryce had kindly brought along a collection of his work, and after he had introduced himself and his background in forestry and his own introduction to basket-making via a birthday present, the workshop started with a discussion of skep-making around the various part- and fully-finished examples.  The wide variety of possible materials, from straw to brambles, nettles, various grasses and so on, was of interest to everyone. Continue reading “Skep-making workshop – November, 2017”

Murray McGregor – My Beekeeping Year, September – November

[This is the first of a series of articles based on interviews by Lindsey Macaulay and Olya Kurasova with Murray McGregor.]

My season starts in September when all my colonies are at the heather moors of Scotland waiting for us to harvest the honey crop.

The first thing we do is remove the bees from the honey crop within the hive. We do this by using a New Zealand type clearing board which normally clears all the bees in a matter of hours and, in my opinion, offers several advantages over the alternatives.  See Note 1.

Continue reading “Murray McGregor – My Beekeeping Year, September – November”