A Buzz through the Beekeeping Year!
David described the Bee Keeping cycle and also included the months in which different flowers from both trees and plants are most beneficial for bees.
The Bee Keeping year will always vary according to the weather (Bees can't forage in belting rain) and where you are in the country.
The first inspection of the hives each year will always include: Is there enough room? Is there a queen? Is there disease? Is there enough stores of food for them to live on? - If the bees have insufficient food to see them through then, fondant icing can be placed on top of the hives as a food source.
Over Winter some colonies may have died off due to starvation or disease, but those that survive through to Spring see the colony rise rapidly as the queen lays increasing numbers of eggs with the increasing hours of daylight.
During the height of summer the male drones are working themselves to death with foraging. Towards the end of the summer the Bee's stores (or bee-keepers honey depending on how you look at it) reaches a maximum and the colony prepare to over-winter, by shutting out all the drones that haven't dropped dead from exhaustion.
In the picture David can be seen extracting a frame of honey whilst demonstrating how safe and impregnable his Bee Keeper's suit is from attack by a small swarm that can find many areas in a car to hide in.
Everyone who tried it enjoyed the honey. It doesn't come any fresher! Thank you David.