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Asian Hornet

The Asian Hornet is a highly aggressive predator which poses a significant threat to honey bees and other pollinators in the UK. Numbers of this destructive insect rose rapidly in 2023 when more were detected in the UK than in the previous six years combined.


Just one Asian Hornet can hunt down and eat 30 - 50 honey bees a day and their habit of hawking (hovering) outside the hive stops the bees from collecting nectar and pollen to feed themselves

To find out more click on identification below - this page also has links to download the Asian Hornet Watch app for reporting sightings. 

News from Airedale Beekeepers

Catch up on all the latest from our Cliffe Castle bees in the Cliffe Castle Bee Blog

Our Bee Blog


Reporting from the International Meeting of Young Beekeepers in Slovenia

July 2023

This summer Airedale Beekeepers was able to support one of our youngest beekeepers, Joanna Oddie, to join the International Meeting of Young Beekeepers in Slovenia.  This annual event gives young beekeepers the opportunity to meet, work and learn from fellow young beekeepers from almost 30 countries around the world. It is a life-changing trip for those selected to represent England and a great time is guaranteed!

Read more about Joanna's trip in our blog.

Honey adulteration


Sadly, new research has shown that a lot of the honey you can buy in supermarkets is not pure, but has been adulterated with sugar. 

Lynne Ingram, master beekeeper at Wesley Cottage Bees, near Bridgwater in Somerset, who is among a group of beekeepers calling for better information for shoppers, said: “If you see honey that is as cheap as 75p a jar, it is too good to be true. It’s unrealistic for people to be able to produce genuine honey at those prices."

Read more in this article from The Observer

ABKA Honey Show 2022

Our first honey show since 2019 took place at Cliffe Castle Museum in October 2022 - a chance for ABKA members to come together, talk bees and honey and achieve some recognition for their hard work during the beekeeping season. Our Honey Show competition had eighteen competition classes to recognise the quality and flavour of different types of honey and for hive products and honey related items such as beeswax candles, honey cake and bee photography.   Winners of the most important categories were rewarded with our historic cups.


Small Hive beetle

​A post-Brexit loophole could allow the arrival of a devastating new insect pest into the UK. Small hive beetle is endemic in southern Italy, from where most bees imported into the UK are brought.  It can multiply to huge numbers within infested colonies, where the beetle eats bee brood, honey and pollen, destroys wax combs and causes fermentation and spoiling of the honey.  Prior to December 2020, an effective inspection regime at points of import had prevented it from becoming established in the UK..  With Brexit, the rules changed: though packages of bees cannot currently be imported into Great Britain, they are still allowed to be brought into Northern Ireland – from where they can then be transferred to the UK mainland without restriction or disease inspection.We support the British Beekeepers Association in a campaign to ask the Government to take action on this urgent issue.  For more information on this issue see the BBKA's press release BBKA here

Bee rustling is real

This story by one of our members was in this weekend’s Yorkshire Post.  As you can read on our front page, the prospect of unscrupulous bee importers being responsible for bringing Small Hive Beetle into the UK via Northern Ireland is now a genuine threat to UK honey bees and beekeeping.  Please read the story and sign the petition to Stop the unregulated importation of honey bees into GB from the EU via Northern Ireland.

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