• Welcome to the website of the Cheshire Beekeepers Association

     Apes curamus et nos curant (We look after bees and they look after us) 

Swarms

Do I Have a Honey Bee Swarm? And What Should I Do About it?

Beekeepers are often approached about winged, flying creatures, especially in the spring and summer period, when they are their most active simply working and are no cause for alarm.

 

Cheshire Beekeepers are ONLY able to help with Honey Bee Swarms (not Nests)!

Above is a video of a Honey Bee Swarm in flight. It can look and sound quite frightening but the bees are focused on finding their queen and then on finding a new home.

If you see a swarm like this keep your distance, go indoors, close windows and doors. Watch the swarm settle, it's fascinating. Then call a beekeeper to come and collect them.

 

 You can find a beekeeper to collect a swarm by following the link below to the British Beekeepers website and scrolling down to STEP 2 and clicking on the ORANGE BOX

 

 British Beekeepers Website 

 

  

A Settled Swarm

This is a more typical view of a swarm settled in a tree. However, swarms can settle almost anywhere, on posts, in hedges, drainpipes and even on parked cars,

 

 

 

How can I be sure it is a Honey Bee?

 Below is a picture of a Honey Bee and a Bumble Bee sharing a flower.

The British Beekeepers Website also has some useful images and videos that may help you.

A Honey Bee and a Bumble Bee share a purple flower

The vibrant yellow of the Bumble Bee (Foreground) is the stereotypical "Bee" that a child may draw. This is in contrast to the darker and sleeker Honey Bee (Background)

 

 

 

Tree Bumblebees

The Tree Bumblebee is a relatively new foreign species which has become very common in the UK and their nests are on the increase.

Here in Cheshire our swarm collectors receive hundreds of calls each year reporting these bees as swarms.

 

These are NOT swarms, they are nests and our swarm collectors only deal with Honey Bee swarms.

 

These bees typically nest in the eaves of houses and bird boxes.

They are easily recognised as there are usually between 5 and 20 bees flying outside the nest all day, on warm sunny days.

The nests are established in early spring but flying males appear later in the spring and summer. The nests die out naturally in the late summer and autumn.

If the nest is in the eaves it is not likely to cause any problems as the bees flying round the entrance are all male and do not have a sting.

If they are in a bird box, high up or away from people passing by, again they should not be a cause for concern.

If they are near to head height or near children or animals, constant movement outside the entrance could promote a defensive response and may result in stinging. In this case you should contact your local council or a pest controller to either move the box or, if absolutely necessary, exterminate the bees.

More information on Tree Bumblebees can be found here.

Our grateful thanks go to Clive Hill the author of Introducing the Tree Bumblebee, for allowing us to post his PDF on our website.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 
 

Become a Beekeeper

Learn More

Education

Want to learn more about bees?

 

FAQ

For those just curious or have a question that they really want answering, we have a fantastic bunch of frequently asked questions that have been put together from our members years of experience.

If you can't find it here there is also an opportunity for you to submit your question to be answered by an experienced beekeeper.

Learn More

History of the CBKA

Cheshire Bee Keepers Association has a rich and varied history spanning over a century!

Please feel free to come along and join our members in carrying on our rich herritage, or if you would prefer you can study more of our history:

Learn More

Beginners

Here at the CBKA we are proud of the work we do educating new beekeepers as they will hopefully continue the fantastic work that our organisation has been providing since 1899.

We have created the below resource to help all of our "young" (or at least young at heart) beekeepers develop their initial skills.

Get Started

BBKA Modules

Feel that you've learnt all you can from our Beginners resources?

Don't worry! We can help you develop your skills and qualifications all the way to becomming a Master Beekeeper

This is offered in 7 BBKA Modules followed by 3 practical examinations

feel free to have a chat with one of our experienced beekeepers at a meeting or:

Learn More

Where can you find us?

What We Do

Membership

How to become a member and what it entails

Membership Categories

Registered Member

Includes 3rd party public liability insurance and product liability insurance for claims up to £10m, foul brood insurance for up to 3 colonies and registration with the British Beekeepers Association. In addition to the insurance the BBKA send out a monthly newsletter to all members, produce leaflets and educational packs on various aspects of beekeeping. There is also a Cheshire BKA newsletter distributed 6 times a year and a monthly E-News issued via e-mail.

Partner Member

Full benefits but without separate mailings from the BBKA or Cheshire BKA. This member must reside at the same address as a registered member.

Country Member

BBKA and Cheshire BKA newsletters and correspondence only (no insurance). This category is for people who wish to support beekeeping and keep informed of the BBKA and Cheshire BKA activities.

Friend of Cheshire Beekeepers

For non-beekeepers who wish to support Cheshire BKA (no insurance). Cheshire BKA newsletters and correspondence.

Associate Member

No insurance cover, no BBKA newsletters and no correspondence. Restricted to the wife/husband/partner of any of the above members.

Junior Member

Up to and including the age of 17 years. No insurance cover, Cheshire BKA newsletters and correspondence.

Download Membership form

Want to get in touch?

Contact Us

Events

Our events by county and branch for the coming months

County

Cheshire Beekeepers’ Association is organised into five branches, each with its own branch secretary. The branches organise their own programme of events throughout the year.

During the active season these events usually feature visits to members apiaries often with a theme depending on the location of the apiary and how far advanced or otherwise the bees are. The theme may be spring build up, swarm control, disease/treatment for varroa, Queen rearing etc. For these apiary meetings it is essential to take a veil and many of those attending wear their normal beekeeping attire.

For more information see our County events page

North Cheshire

North Cheshire meet on the third Thursday of each month at Frodsham Community Centre, Fluin Lane, Frodsham WA6 7QN beginning at 7.30pm unless stated otherwise.

For more information see our events page

Mid Cheshire

Mid Cheshire meet on the First Monday of each month at Hartford Methodist Church Hall, Beach Road, Hartford CW8 3AD beginning at 7.30pm

For more information see our events page

South Cheshire

South Cheshire meetings are held monthly at 7.30pm on the first Thursday of each month at Bradwall Village Hall, Bradwall Road, Bradwall CW11 1RG

For more information see our events page

Stockport

Stockport meetings are held at the Woodford War Memorial Hall, Chester Road, Woodford, Stockport SK7 1PS at 7.30 pm on the second Wednesday of the month except for the January meeting and Apiary Meetings.

For more information see our events page

Wirral

Wirral meetings are held at Thornton Hough Village Hall, Manor Road, Thornton Hough CH63 1JB at 7.30pm unless stated otherwise.

For more information see our events page

  • Joining the CBKA has taught me a great deal and given me a fantastic support network to help my bee keeping progress
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  • I joined Cheshire Beekeepers because they are such a helpful and friendly bunch!
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  • Cheshire Beekeepers look after their new beekeepers and support each other!
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Contact

Get in touch

 

Hon. Secretary

   Liz Camm

   07827 297144  (Text only Please - No calls) 

   thesecretary@cheshire-bka.co.uk

Webmaster

   Phil Swift

   webmaster@cheshire-bka.co.uk

Bee Inspectors

Looking for a Bee Inspector? We keep them here.