Bungay Community Bees Archive

  • assembled at the Butter Cross

    Climate March November 2015

    On Saturday November 28th, Sustainable Bungay, aided by two bees and some children, paraded through Bungay in order to raise awareness of climate change and the Paris climate talks. We started outside the Library and were sent off by Terry Reeve, the Town Reeve, pictured […]

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  • Flow Hive. source: images.indigogo.com

    Flow Hive Thoughts…

    At first glance it seems exciting, new, revolutionary. It appears to have arisen out of caring for bees. The no-hive-opening honey collection system. But as one considers the Flow Hive in a little more depth various issues arise. I’m not saying the inventors of the […]

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  • BCLG 13.7.2014

    On Making Space for Nature in Sustainable Bungay

    This post was first published on 24th September 2014 under the title Mark Watson on Making Space for Flowers as part of the “Making Space for Nature” theme on the Transition Network website. It appears here unabridged. “Did you grow all those yourself?”, a young […]

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  • Wildflowers at Bungay Castle

    Wildflowers at Bungay Castle

    BCB’s Gemma Parker has worked with Jasmine Lingwood’s family to create a wildflower area at Bungay Castle. The following is an update from Gemma: When Jasmine died in 2012 she was kind enough to ask for funeral donations to go to the Bungay Community Bee […]

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  • time to go into the top bar nuc box

    Swarm! 2

    The buzzing penetrated my awareness deep inside the house. When I got to the window I saw the whole of my garden buzzing with bees as they swarmed from the hive there. It took me two tries to get them into the top bar nuc […]

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  • image

    Come and see a horizontal Top Bar Hive!

    Sunday May 4th, 2pm in Earsham. This is a chance for you to see a top bar hive in use as well as chat about bees over cake. Email bees@sustainablebungay.com or phone Elinor on 07791 495012 for more details.

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  • image

    Sticky Thoughts

    I love honey, not everybody does I know, but for me, the darker the better. And heather honey. Oh yum. But I eat less honey now than I ever did before I became interested in bees. Initially beekeeping appealed to me as a form of […]

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  • Alburgh swarm from Warre


    On this lovely April day bees have been on the move.  Swarming is how honey bees increase their numbers. When the colony is in tip-top condition, with a hive full of bees, brood and stores and a new queen developing, the old queen is sent […]

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  • IMG_1738

    College Farm Education Apiary

    Our big project last year was the initiation of educational visits for schools in conjunction with Anglia Regional Co-operative Society and Featherdown Farms. A purpose built apiary was created at College Farm, Aldeby, a fantastic spot leading down to the broads. It’s primarily aimed at […]

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  • Bee Tea: tea and lavender shortbread, yum :)

    Edible Plants Bee Tea

    It’s a grey day today, a good day for looking back to a warmer one in the summer when Bungay Community Bees joined with Lesley and the Libray Community Garden to host a Bee Tea. Each year the Library Garden central bed has a different […]

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  • Our bees arriving at the apiary

    Come and see the Bees!

    Once again Bungay Community Bees’ colonies have survived rather a strange weather year. Long spells of dry weather following the late, sudden burst of flower energy has led to low honey stores in good sized colonies. We are currently needing to feed them up with […]

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  • IssueNo2cover-723x1024

    STIR Magazine Article on Sustainable Bungay – from July 2013

    STIR magazine is a “reader-supported” printed publication which appears quarterly in the UK and beyond. STIR looks at “the inspiring and practical co-operative, commons-based and community-led alternatives to the crises in our food, finance systems and other important aspects of our lives.” In the July […]

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  • transferring frames into the hive.

    Installing bees into the observation hive

    The latest additions to the apiary includes 2 clear tubes between the entrance holes and the hive. Hopefully we shall be able to see the bees with pollen on their legs returning to the nest. Mike added some ‘porches’ on the outside as well to […]

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  • The main body installed

    Mikes Most Marvellous Observation Hive

    I spent a great three hours earlier with Mike and his family as he got the majority of the observation hive installed. If I’m brutally honest I wasn’t particularly useful, but I did get to swan around taking pictures and getting a feel for the […]

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  • IMG_8261

    Considering Transition community events as cultural and creative acts

    by Charlotte Du Cann Last month as part of the Playing for Time project, a convergence of artists, theatre makers, writers and tutors met at Lumb Bank, the Arvon Foundation’s centre in South Yorkshire. We were collecting material that will form the core of the […]

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  • #2 with feeder and follower boards in place

    Top bar hives: Mike’s creative adventures #2

    The BCB Top Bar Hive design receives some modifications! Building the first 2 BCB horizontal Top Bar Hives was a real journey of discovery which I thoroughly enjoyed, since finishing those hives I have made refinements to the original design. This process of evolution partly […]

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  • Measuring the apiary site

    Bees: education project underway!

    We have embarked upon a new and exciting venture. In conjunction width Anglia Regional Co-operative Society and Featherdown Farms at College Farm, Aldeby, we will be providing  educational (and inspirational) visits for schools. There is a purpose-built apiary in a sunny, sheltered site (see it […]

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  • birdsfoot trefoil and wild carrot

    Bungay Community Bees: Wildflower Meadow Update

    As some will remember, we had the exciting opportunity in Sept 2011, to help sow a native wildflower meadow seed mix on one acre of Keith Parker’s land in Flixton at one of our Bungay Community Bees apiary sites.   In some ways the site […]

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  • Earsham Bees (hTBH)

    Bees, Bees, Bees ….they’re alive!

    I’m always a little apprehensive at this time of year; will the bees have survived? Did they have enough stores? Have they been able to maintain colony temperature? Did the woodpeckers get a tasty meal? Can the bees cope with any varroa load? Has anything […]

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  • Bees are fun!

    Bungay Beehive Day 2012: Snapshots

    We had a great time at this years Bungay Beehive Day (even with some last minute tent hitches), many thanks to all those that participated. I have put together a few photo’s to give a flavour of what went on…  Heidi Herrmann from the Natural […]

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  • bringing pollen in

    BCB Bees: Update Sept 2012

    Over the last couple of months we have been lucky enough to take in some of the late summer swarms. One didn’t stick around very long but the others have happily taken up residence in our beautiful hand made horizontal top bar hives. They were […]

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  • apple1

    Abundance in Woodton & Green Drinks on October 2nd

    With the determination of Cathy Proudlove and co-operation of Woodton Primary School a small group of us today spent an hour harvesting apples from the tree in the playground. These will be brought along to the Green Dragon tomorrow night, 7.30pm  for conversation on – […]

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  • swarm in bush

    Late summer swarms…

    Thanks to some local contacts Bungay Community Bees hived five swarms in July, we lost one due to being queenless and one that left the following day, but three remain. We also had two emerge from our National hive at Barsham, it’s all got to […]

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  • featuredbee

    Bungay Bee Hive Day: 15th July

    Bungay Bee Hive Day is a celebration of the honeybee and other pollinating insects along with the plants they love. Unique in the region and in its second year the event is organised by Bungay Community Bees as part of the Bungay Festival and aims to […]

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  • High Ash Farm, phacelia and bee

    10th June: Join us on a visit to High Ash Farm WITH Chris Skinner!

    Chris has kindly offered to speak to us on 10th June, 2.30 pm at his fabulous farm at Caistor St Edmund. High Ash Farm has been managed with biodiversity in mind for many years. The visit: Chris will show us the various wildlife habitats and […]

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  • Get your garden buzing wall panel

    Bungay Garden Centre goes Bee-Friendly!

    This week, Bungay Community Bees (BCB) launched their “Get Your Garden Buzzing” garden centre project, at Bungay’s own Three Willows Garden Centre. It has taken a couple of years from my comment “how do we help people know which plants are bee friendly?” for this […]

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  • Watching bees

    Bursting with Bees

      Finally! It was just warm enough (on a day when I wasn’t working) to have a peek inside the hive. Four of us gathered to see what we could see. I’m coming around to the idea of, or perhaps rather gaining confidence in, opening […]

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  • Seeds, tea, cake and chat

    Sowing Wildflower Seeds

      Rose led Bungay Community Bees in a seed sowing session this week. It was great learning more about the plants we were hoping to raise and I really enjoyed hearing a boy’s comment about being in awe of tiny seeds being able to transform […]

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  • sawing the canes to a fifteen cm or so length

    Building bee and bug abodes

    Our group may have an unashamed love affair with honey bees, but we have come to realise they are part of so much more. They are, by dint of being generalists and by numbers, a really important pollinator insect, however they are not always the […]

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  • snowdrop pollen

    Intoxicated by bees

    I think Honey Bees are my favourite drug. Better even than a Gin and Tonic. On this first truly warm day of the year, in a heady mix of sunshine and warm breeze there is a frenetic buzz of flying bees jostling to get their […]

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  • bee exploring fondant offering

    Fondant candy

      After the recent cold spell it was a huge relief to see the bees flying today. There was an audible buzz as I approached the hive and I have to admit all thoughts of letting the children help me or use the stethoscope for […]

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  • 'Superhive' Queen (my favourite)

    Bungay Community Bees 2011

      Bungay Comunity Bees (BCB) has captured the imaginations of many this year. Several other Community Beekeeping groups have begun and we have become known to inspiring organisations such as The Natural Beekeeping Trust, Friends of the Bees (Phil Chandler ‘The Barefoot Beekeeper’), Bees for […]

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  • around the pond

    Linking Landscapes: vitally important (but oh so difficult…)

    ‘every generation grows up in an ever depleted landscape. Growing up in a depleted landscape one thinks that that is normal..’ Oliver Rackham The Suffolk Naturalists’Society hosted the Linking Landscapes conference in Autumn 2011. The overriding theme was one of response to loss of insects […]

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  • ready to go - dried yarrow and calendula

    Salve Sunday

    December 2011 saw Bungay Community Bees coming together in my kitchen to make a healing yarrow salve, utilizing beeswax left over from honey processing. We were led by Mark, who proved to be both knowledgeable and entertaining – read about the Plants for Life talks, walks and […]

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  • neonicotinoid products (a Soil Association picture)

    Further evidence to condemn neonicotinoid pesticides

    The following has been sent to us by Friends of the Bees: News just in provides compelling evidence that Bayer’s neonicotinoid pesticides are a significant cause of bee deaths in Britain and elsewhere, supporting the case that we have been making for years. The British […]

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  • Natural Beekeeping Conference

    Thoughts from the first Natural Beekeeping Conference

    In August Eloise and I spent a thoroughly enjoyable weekend at the first ever Natural Beekeeping Conference. There were many speakers covering a variety of topics and although we are unable to cover a whole weekends worth in depth, we would like to share some […]

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  • sept 2011 032

    Bonkers about Bees at Bungay Primary School

    Earlier this year Bungay Community Bees spent a week with Bungay Primary School. First and foremost it was fun and inspiring – hopefully on both sides. I was particularly impressed with how well the children engaged with us and how much information they soaked up. […]

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  • listening, Dec 2011

    Blustery Bees

    I spent the night a couple of weeks ago lying awake listening to the wind howling around the house. My mind was full of images of hive pieces strewn about and our lovely Superhive II colony being dispersed over the north sea. I resolved to […]

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  • yet more sowing

    First Wildflower Meadow has been sown!

    The Plants for Bees strand of BCB had an important moment last week when with Keith and Jeannie Parker we planted a wildflower meadow at their home in Flixton. This is also one of our Apiary sites and so we should have some very happy […]

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  • and in the honey goes..

    Bungay Bees a-baking

    We did get some honey this year but not quite enough to jar up for all our members so we thought it would be a nice idea to use it collectively. The idea of a cake making session was born. Not only did we use […]

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  • Eloise listening

    Busy Bees in October

    This wonderful weather has allowed the bees to keep busy into autumn. I have been taking time to visit them and to sit and see what they are up to. They are taking loads of pollen into the hive still, which Bob Spruce said they […]

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  • empty comb

    The Vanishing of OUR Bees…

    I am a little late in writing this blog, partly as I haven’t quite known how to go about it. It concerns the absconding of a whole hive full of bees. Not an ordinary swarm, but the leaving of a whole colony. It’s always great […]

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  • IMG_6061-2

    Bungay Community Bees and the Co-op Family Fun Day

    The first thing I want to do is thank everyone at the Bungay Rainbow Co-op on behalf of Bungay Community Bees for making last Sunday’s family fun day so enjoyable and successful. I knew that the Co-op store was donating the proceeds to BCB, but […]

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  • IMG_5800 lowres

    Bungay Beehive Day – Reflections and Celebrations

    Bungay Beehive Day was a collaborative effort involving much preparation and hard work by Bungay Community Bees’ Outreach group over the past nine months. With hundreds of people turning up on the day to talk to beekeepers, look at different types of hives, visit the […]

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  • New-Queen1

    Bungay Beehive Day – Sunday 24th July, 10.30am – 4pm on Castle Meadow

    Bungay Beehive Day is a celebration of the honeybee and other pollinating insects along with the plants they love. It’s a first-of-its-kind event organised by Bungay Community Bees (BCB) as part of the Bungay Festival and aims to promote awareness and enjoyment of the key […]

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  • gathering around

    Top Bar Hive looking good

    So – it was the second inspection of the tbh today. The bees had built a little more comb along the top bars but were still quite a small colony. All was looking well, we found eggs, larvae, sealed brood and the queen (second most […]

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  • sticky hive

    Unopened for 2 years… and Superhive lives on (genetically)!

    What a fabulous honeybee day! The first port of call was to investigate a hive lost in nettles that hadn’t been looked at for at least 2 years. Thankfully Philip had been busy with a scythe before we got there otherwise I’m not sure we […]

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  • New Queen

    Here we go!

    Bungay Community Bees has experienced some colony losses this year (for a number of reasons) but I’m happy (no, ecstatic) to report we now have a new Queen laying well and expanding her colony rapidly. She is fabulously large and long with lovely wide tan […]

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    Bungay Beehive

    Bungay Community Bees (BCB) is now in its second busy year and this July will be hosting a first-of-its kind event, the Bungay Beehive – a day of bee-related exhibits, crafts, workshops and talks. After establishing three community-shared apiaries last year we are now focusing on outreach and education […]

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  • first combs in tbh

    Top Bar Triumph (well so far anyway..)

    Paul and Adele have been feeding and spying (very handy having a glass panel) on the swarm housed in the top bar hive in their garden. However, the time to open the hive eventually came. So, after nearly four weeks, myself and Mike (the crafter […]

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  • Swarm2

    Let’s Converge – Bungay Community Bees… in the street, in the café, in the garden

    Tuesday was a very exciting day for Bungay Community Bees. But where do I start? In Paul’s garden, with the arrival of a top bar hive in the morning? In the street where Josiah happened upon a swarm in the afternoon? In the Willows café […]

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