Bees working propolis (video by Alasdair MacKenzie)
Dear bee friends and supporters of the Trust
We are pleased to be in touch again after a long time with a few bits of information about our work that may be of interest to you.
One of Jonathan Powell’s pursuits during “lockdown” was the construction of a bee-centred hive from pallet wood, This attracted a fair amount of interest in the bee community, not least that of Northern Bee Books who will shortly publish Jonathan’s how-to guide as a small booklet on August 3rd.
We feel that this latest addition to the range of hives available to support the creation of habitat for free-living bees will be much appreciated as so many more are interested in giving something to the bees.
In this connection we draw your attention once again to our new website freelingbees.com and encourage you to report your own finds and browse the beautiful little stories coming in from all over the world for inspiration to direct your gaze upwards while walking in the woods.
Notes for your diary: Saturday 31st July our special Arboreal Apiculture Salon guest will be Matt Somerville. We look forward to hearing more about the work of this remarkable bee advocate who has been using his considerable skills as artist carpenter to build and install hives country-wide for many years now, and in doing so enabled so many communities and private land owners to support the honeybee in truly altruistic fashion. Tune in to this free live streaming event if you can - to sign up for details visit this page
On the same weekend Heidi Herrmann will address a conference (regrettably online) organised by the renowned Scientific and Medical Network. Her talk is entitled “The Power of Bee-ness” and the abstract is here: “We are all aware that the honeybee has fallen from grace. More than a century of an ever-deepening alienation from the spiritual wellsprings of life appear to have led us to view the honeybee as an agricultural animal existing to serve our needs. I hope to inspire you to expand your views of the sublime creature that was revered by our ancestors and is now at risk of falling victim to our ignorance. I believe that we are called upon to review the conceptual framework of natural science to better understand how the survival of the Bee is connected with our future.” Find out more about the conference here
We are keen to support good bee work as we enjoy the support of so many who see value in our advocacy. To this end we have set out our grant giving criteria on a new page on our main website here. We thank our supporters for enabling us to return their many gestures of generosity.
Natural Bee Husbandry Magazine
Thanks to the amazing commitment and hard work of Editor John Phipps and Northern Bee Books our lovely magazine keeps going with a steady flow of inspiring articles. The current issue is 19, issue 20 has just gone to to print. Thank you to all authors and subscribers, it makes us happy to be associated with a publication that is entirely devoted to exploring what bees want and need in our collective estimation. In that it is unique. If you haven’t already done so, please subscribe here.
Finally, we assure you that the recent proliferation of what can only be termed anti-honeybee propaganda on various websites, social media and the mainstream press has not escaped our attention. Under the benevolent guise of advocating for all the other bee and insect species honeybees are maligned and misrepresented in a fairly systematic manner, especially in conservation circles. This is worrying and perhaps to be expected in a materialistic culture that views the sacred bee as yet another competitor for resources. However, attacking the creature rather than aspects of beekeeping practice that degrade the creature and force it into unnatural behaviours such as extra foraging due to deprivation of stores, massed hive placements etc. is clearly an outcome of short-circuit thinking if not wilful ignorance.
We have commissioned our friend, the excellent honeybee advocate and ancient tree expert Helen Leaf, one of our latest associates to set the record straight in a well-researched and insightful article that we intend to disseminate widely.
On this hopeful note, we wish you and your bees a wonderful summer.