In Liverpool, beekeeping has become very popular. For many, I have found, it is the first step into learning about our wildlife.
However, despite all the good people think they are doing with keeping hives, installing a hive in to a space is essentially like a factory going into a space and all the resources are gleaned - ie pollen and nectar, to keep the factory running. This creates a huge impact on other beekeepers in the area and more importantly, on honeybees that we do not monitor as closely as honeybees.
This project will be to us an existing apiary in Bootle where I have 4 hives. It will be used for community groups, individuals, schools and the like to use existing hives to learn about bees, have a go at looking in side a hive, learning about which plants are good for bees and why honeybees are just as important as other bees (the honeybee is only 1 type of bee out of 250 in the UK but many people dont know this).
I have been approached by 3 different Liverpool homeschooling groups over Merseyside who are keen on their children to learn about bees, our own Liverpool environment and more about nature and how we rely on insects, plants and trees in our everyday lives.
The project will take participants through a season of beekeeping (april - August, we will cover all the seasons even if we start in august, wecan do the rest the following year and continue on) and end with a honey extraction and harvest. This is where we can taste our local landscape and see what the different forage tastes like in spring and in summer.
With the existing apiary, this will reduce the need of hives being installed, it will be a place where others can learn about beekeeping in free, informative and in a friendly space taught by a an experienced beekeeper.
Funded by Liverpool (July 2016)