Wednesday, 26 August 2015

Preparing for Winter : Members meeting - 9 September 7.30pm NOT TO BE MISSED!

Eric Beaumont talking about bees!
9 September 
DMBKA Members Meeting 
The Oakhouse, Maldon CM9 5PF 
7.30pm for 8pm
Guest Speaker:  Eric Beaumont, Epping Forest Beekeepers
Presentation:  Preparing hives for winter.

Come along for this fascinating talk on how this London based beekeeper prepares his hives for winter.

Eric will talk about feeding, hive structure, treatments and insulation.

Not to be missed.

*********


Monday, 24 August 2015

EBKA 2015 Annual Beekeepers' Conference - Sussex Plan and Neonics!

Saturday 31 October 2015
9.45am - 4.30pm


To purchase a ticket please contact:

Keith Lomax

M: 07882 132119
E:  conference@dmbka.org.uk
A:  47 West Ley
      Burnham on Crouch
      CM0 8LH

Tickets can be paid for by cheque or BACS transfer.

Cheques should be made payable to

Dengie & Maldon Beekeepers

BACS transfers:

Please contact Keith direct

All tickets are electronically generated - if you require a hard copy, please send an Stamped addressed envelope to Keith at the above address.

We very much look forward to welcoming you at this year's EBKA Conference.

Keynote Speakers

Professor Francis Ratnieks – Sussex University

Francis Ratnieks has been studying insects since he was a boy, and honey bees for the past 30 years. He took his PhD at Dyce Laboratory for Honey Bee Studies in the Department of Entomology at Cornell University. He has kept up to 180 bee hives of his own, making comb honey, rearing queens for sale, and pollinating almonds. He has studied honeybees on all continents other than Antarctica. He has supervised 20 PhD students. He is the UK's only Professor of Apiculture and he is author of 250 scientific research articles.

Keynote Presentation:
The Sussex Plan for Honey Bee Health & Well Being
What we have learned to help honeybees and beekeeping.

At the EBKA 2015 Annual Conference, Professor Ratnieks will describe "Sussex Plan" research aimed at helping honey bee health and foraging. In terms of honeybee health, he will present results of a series of projects on the effectiveness of hygienic behaviour in controlling Varroa mites and Deformed Wing Virus, and also on the effectiveness of other control methods against Varroa. In terms of foraging, Professional Ratnieks will describe results of a series of projects that have decoded honeybee waggle dances to understand where the bees are foraging and at what distances, as well projects that have compared the attractiveness of different flower varieties for honey bees and other flower-visiting insects.

Professor Lin Field – Rothamsted Research

Lin Field, currently a Head of Department at Rothamsted Research has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and popular articles as well obtained funding for, and supervised, many science projects, including 15 PhD studentships since her early days as technician.  As Honorary Chair at the University of Nottingham and a President of the Royal Entomological Society Lin is conversant with the insect world, including the honeybee.  Her personal research interests are focussed on understanding an insecticide mode of action and resistance at the biochemical/molecular level and then using this knowledge to develop better pest control strategies. 

Keynote Presentation:
Why do we use insecticides and what are the threats for bees?

In this presentation at the 2015 EBKA Conference, Professor Fields will discuss why we use insecticides and what we know about how they work. She will particularly explain what determines toxicity and why some chemicals are very specific for insects and indeed why some are specific for just some kinds of insects. This will include the effect of different compounds on bees and on the varroa mites that threaten bee colonies. The debate on one group of insecticides, the neonicotinoids, is ongoing and Professor Field hopes to be able to give an update on the position at the time of the conference. She will also talk about some of the work she is doing at Rothamsted to try to help find compounds, which offer good pest control without damaging bees.

January 2016 - Beekeeper Course - FULL

The beekeeper theory course 

from 11 January 2016 to 15 February 2016 

is now FULL

There are spaces on the 

7 March to 18 April course

please visit our training page for an application form. 

Plant Heritage Autumn Plant Fair 2015


AUTUMN PLANT FAIR



Sat 19th and Sun 20th September 


RHS Hyde Hall, Creephedge Lane
,
Rettendon, Essex CM3 8ET

10.00am to 4.00pm




Specialist Nurseries and Stands, 


Visitors Centre, Gardens, Restaurant




Admission: RHS Members - Free

Non-Members - Usual Garden Admission




Friday, 7 August 2015

2015 Essex Beekeepers' Conference - Professors Lin Field and Francis Ratnieks

Saturday 31 October 2015
9.45am - 4.30pm


To purchase a ticket please contact:

Keith Lomax

M: 07882 132119
E:  conference@dmbka.org.uk
A:  47 West Ley
      Burnham on Crouch
      CM0 8LH

Tickets can be paid for by cheque or BACS transfer.

Cheques should be made payable to

Dengie & Maldon Beekeepers

BACS transfers:

Please contact Keith direct

All tickets are electronically generated - if you require a hard copy, please send an Stamped addressed envelope to Keith at the above address.

We very much look forward to welcoming you at this year's EBKA Conference.

Keynote Speakers

Professor Francis Ratnieks – Sussex University

Francis Ratnieks has been studying insects since he was a boy, and honey bees for the past 30 years. He took his PhD at Dyce Laboratory for Honey Bee Studies in the Department of Entomology at Cornell University. He has kept up to 180 bee hives of his own, making comb honey, rearing queens for sale, and pollinating almonds. He has studied honeybees on all continents other than Antarctica. He has supervised 20 PhD students. He is the UK's only Professor of Apiculture and he is author of 250 scientific research articles.

Keynote Presentation:
The Sussex Plan for Honey Bee Health & Well Being
What we have learned to help honeybees and beekeeping.

At the EBKA 2015 Annual Conference, Professor Ratnieks will describe "Sussex Plan" research aimed at helping honey bee health and foraging. In terms of honeybee health, he will present results of a series of projects on the effectiveness of hygienic behaviour in controlling Varroa mites and Deformed Wing Virus, and also on the effectiveness of other control methods against Varroa. In terms of foraging, Professional Ratnieks will describe results of a series of projects that have decoded honeybee waggle dances to understand where the bees are foraging and at what distances, as well projects that have compared the attractiveness of different flower varieties for honey bees and other flower-visiting insects.

Professor Lin Field – Rothamsted Research

Lin Field, currently a Head of Department at Rothamsted Research has published more than 200 peer-reviewed papers and popular articles as well obtained funding for, and supervised, many science projects, including 15 PhD studentships since her early days as technician.  As Honorary Chair at the University of Nottingham and a President of the Royal Entomological Society Lin is conversant with the insect world, including the honeybee.  Her personal research interests are focussed on understanding an insecticide mode of action and resistance at the biochemical/molecular level and then using this knowledge to develop better pest control strategies. 

Keynote Presentation:
Why do we use insecticides and what are the threats for bees?

In this presentation at the 2015 EBKA Conference, Professor Fields will discuss why we use insecticides and what we know about how they work. She will particularly explain what determines toxicity and why some chemicals are very specific for insects and indeed why some are specific for just some kinds of insects. This will include the effect of different compounds on bees and on the varroa mites that threaten bee colonies. The debate on one group of insecticides, the neonicotinoids, is ongoing and Professor Field hopes to be able to give an update on the position at the time of the conference. She will also talk about some of the work she is doing at Rothamsted to try to help find compounds, which offer good pest control without damaging bees.

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

IMPORTANT - Neonicotinoid Information for Members


The EU moratorium  

December 1st 2013 was the start date for a two year EU moratorium put in force by the European Commission concerning clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiomethoxam and the withdrawal of professional use on crops considered attractive to bees  (a long list including Oil Seed Rape / Maize and on cereals apart from the seed treatment of winter cereals).  

One of the consequences of this moratorium* was that the withdrawal of the authorisations for professional use meant that the products affected were no longer licensed to be applied in these defined end uses. After the two year period during which reviews of the affected active substances take place the products cannot immediately be reinstated to their previous status. They would be dealt with by the regulatory perspective asnew products for those applications covered by the moratorium. This would take time and cost money. There are clearly commercial decisions to be made as well as regulatory ones. One of the key questions  still to be answered is the actual exposure of bees (honey bees) in the field to neonicotinoids and previous BBKA statements (see 5th July 2015 for latest) have described the large scale field trial being undertaken under the direction for the Centre of Ecology and Hydrology. We understand the work is progressing well and that some preliminary results may be available late autumn 2015. The BBKA is updated on this work through its participation in the Bee Health Advisory Forum and the Pollinator Advisory Strategy Group. The results of this independent research should provide both qualitative and quantitative data for honey  bees  from which risk assessments can be made to determine whether honey bees are being exposed to neonicotinoids and that the exposure is giving rise to impacts on honey bee colonies.  This key work should address the first caveat in the 2015 ADM proposition regarding the continuing support of the EU moratorium, namely independent scientific research showing harm or otherwise to honey bees.  

In terms of supporting the continuation of the EU moratorium we need to understand the processes which might follow the publication of the review findings, the proposals to be put to the Member States, and the reaction of the crop protection and farming industries as well as all the other stakeholders.  This has not yet been  stated and we are trying to establish the procedures to be followed and the opportunities for organisations like the BBKA to comment on the proposals. There is effectively nothing to do re extending/maintaining the moratorium as effectively the products will have to be reauthorized in the context of the findings of the current research project.  

120 Day Emergency Authorisations  

Under certain circumstances it is possible for Member States (MS) to authorise the use of a plant protection product for a period not exceeding 120 days, for a limited and controlled use where such a measure is necessary because  of a danger which cannot be contained by any other means as set out in Article 53 of Regulation (EC) 1107/2009.  When issuing such emergency authorisations the MS concerned must inform the other MSs and the Commission of the authorisation given, detailed information about the situation and any measures taken to ensure consumer safety. If necessary the Commission will take a decision as to whether the MS can extend or repeat the emergency authorisation or whether the authorisation must be amended or withdrawn.  

Authorisation would be given for a maximum period of 120 days and as such it is a temporary solution to a pest problem for which a more permanent solution must be found.

Recently 120 day emergency authorisations have been granted for a very limited use of Modesto and Cruiser OSR to treat 5% of the planned sowing of OSR seed in England for use in a limited geographical area (Suffolk, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire) amounting to around 30,000 hectares. The seed has to be certified seed. Farmers will not be able to use treated seed after 20th November 2015.

The National Farmers Union (www.nfuonline.com ) has an informative Q&A webpage  on the Emergency Authorisation for neonicotinoids.

For an emergency authorisation to be granted (and it is only a one off situation) the following criteria have to be satisfied:
· _There is a problem
· _There is a need for the emergency authorisation
· _A solution is available
· _The proposed authorisation will be successful

The BBKA first became aware of the decision to grant these Emergency Authorisations at around 08.50 on The Today programme on BBC Radio 4 on the morning of the announcement and then later formally via the Pollinator Strategy Advisory Group. The BBKA has expressed its dissatisfaction to Defra about the lack of prior communication  of the decision which had been taken before its public announcement.

The following  links identify the decision  making process which has been  followed

minutes/ECPminutes120May2015.htm

http://www.pesticides.gov.uk/guidance/industries/pesticides/advisorygroups/acp/ACP News/ECP1detailedrecord

minutes/ECP27July2015.htm


It is interesting  to note that Denmark, Finland, Estonia, Romania and Bulgaria have all issued emergency authorisations for the use of neonicotinoids.

Members  of the Pollinator Strategy Advisory Group have demanded a special meeting with Defra  which the BBKA would attend. We wait the Government’s  response to the request for such a meeting.

As the work of EFSA (European Food Safety Agency) and its expert committees and the conducting of crucial field experiments are very much still in progress it is impossible  to predict either the timing or the outcome of either the findings of the field studies or the proposals which will be made by the European Commission pending the publications of their findings.  The time  at which  the BBKA can decide on its position make it representations most effectively will be once we have been able to study