Natural Beekeeping 

…is how bees are nurtured at Hogacre Common, safe in the knowledge that the bees know what they are doing: our job is to listen to them and give them the best conditions for their well-being. Interference with the natural lives of the bees is kept to a minimum and nothing is taken from the bee’s hives that the bees cannot afford to lose.  The bees are cared for by a dedicated group of amateur natural beekeepers with training and equipment provided.

We have a number of bee colonies on site, in a mix of ‘WBC’, horizontal topbar and Warre hives. All these bees need food – so it is very important to develop the biodiversity at Hogacre and to encourage flowering plants. Planting wildflowers here and at home  help the bees by providing food – and the bees help by pollinating the flowers and crops.

We hope that the increase in habitats around Hogacre will also help bumblebees and solitary bees – they make up the majority of bee species and are in as much trouble from loss of habitat and pesticides as are honeybees.

Bees are important too to our landlords – Corpus Christi College. They are one of several ‘totemic animals’. They are a reference to the founder’s stated desire to create an institution that would be a ‘hive of [scholarly] activity’. This is remembered in Hogacre’s annual rent payable to the college – a jar of honey.

Recent swarm (happily rehoused) – April 2020

Recent bee activity at Hogacre April 2020. All five inhabited hives survived the winter and are extremely busy when the wind dies down and the temperature rises. This swarm has been successfully rehoused in one of our ‘top bar’ hives.

Thanks to local Chilswell Rd residents for bravely spring-cleaning the bee platform!

(Taking PPE to the next level)