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Yes, almost certainly it is still here in Dorset - the problem is we don't know where.

What we do know is that:

  • The NBU dealt with over 70 Asian Hornet nests in 2023
  • One nest of Asian Hornet can eat 12kg of flying insects.
  • The Asian Hornet is having a negative affecting on insect eating birds.
  • The best way to deal with Asian Hornets is to be plan ahead.

These are just some of the facts I have learned in the past month.

This is a good time to find out how we can prepare for the Asian Hornet invasion.

  • Asian Hornet Awareness Evening at the Colliton Club tonight the 29th November.

There will be a talk by Mark White on the latest developments with contributions from several members of Dorchester and Weymouth Beekeepers who were called to help with the two nests found on Portland.

  • 2nd South West Beekeepers Forum Asian Hornet Conference.
    • The list of speakers is on the web and is impressive including
      • Megan Seymour - from the NBU
      • Alistair Christie - from Jersey where they have loads of experience
      • Dr. Peter Kennedy - from Exeter University
      • Dr. Sandra Rojas Nossa- on the impact of Asian Hornet on biodiversity
      • Quentin Rome - on the impact of Asian Hornet in France
      • Bob Hogge - on the impact of Asian Hornet on beekeepers.
    • The conference is in Bridgwater TA6 6LQ
    • The cost to participate in the workshops is £10
    • The date of the event is the 6th January 2024
    • Full details are here.

Tickets are selling well and with just 300 places available I suggest booking early.

Thursday November 16th 2023

Committee meeting last night and we covered a lot of ground:

  • Asian Hornet Awareness Evening - 29th November at the Colliton Club in Dorchester at 7pm. This will be led by Mark White - the County Asian Hornet Action team Coordinator.
  • Renewals - these are due. If you have lost the renewal form then there is a copy here and full details of membership can be found here.
  • Beecraft Magazine is available at a discount for our members. The annual price is normally £45 for the printed version and members can get it for £35. The digital version is available for £22 instead of £27.
  • Xmas Social will be on the Wednesday 6th December and there will be a quiz - and prizes!
  • The Beginners' Course dates are Tuesday 20th February for 6 Tuesday at the Colliton Club in Dorchester. Full details are on our Courses page.
  • A Bee Behaviour Course will be held on six Wednesday evenings starting on Wednesday 24th January. This will follow the Module 6 Syllabus of the BBKA. Further details will be on our Courses page.

Wednesday 8th November 2023

We are on our way again. As some of you may have seen the website has been a little lacking in content in the past few months. This has been the result of an ongoing copyright issue. I am pleased to say that as far as this website is concerned that is now a thing of the past. So here we go again:

One of the first things I am putting back is the For Sale page as we have members with items to sell. A newly added item is a GasVap for oxalic acid treatment for Varroa.

I will also be putting the BeeInfo pages onto this website. This has proved a great hit with beekeepers of many levels of enthusiasm and knowledege. My aim has to been to present as much information as I can with as few words as possible. If you have any comments on the presentation or content then please let me know at .

Just as an aside - for those interested in mathematical models of bee foraging activity then I recommend This uses NetLogo and Agent Based Modelling to simulate the foraging behaviour of bees. If none of this makes any sense then just ignore me!

Just had a look at "The West Dorset Magazine". There is a good article on the Asian Hornet with a description of the nests which were found on Portland. However the image they chose to illustrate it is:

A Giant Asian Hornet Vespa mandarinia
Yasunori Koide, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

What they have shown is the Giant Asian Hornet (Vespa mandarinia). It has several yellow stripes on its thorax and is legs are dark brown. The Queens can grow to 5cms long.

What they should have shown:

Asian Hornet Vespa velutina
Gilles San Martin from Namur, Belgium, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Note that the Asian Hornet has one wide yellow band on the thorax and yellow legs. In addition it is, as you would expect, much smaller than the Giant Asian Hornet. The Queens are just 3cm long.

Well you missed the AGM - or if you were there I hope you enjoyed it. I must say of all the many AGMs that I have been to that was probably the most entertaining - and that is not something you say often about an AGM.

Our next big event in the County is the Dorset Beekeepers Convention and hopefully that will also be highly entertaining:

  • When? Sunday 29th October 09:30 to 17:00
  • Where? Blandford School DT11 7SQ
  • Who?
    • Stephen Fleming on Drone CAs
    • Margaret Murdin on Bee Genetics
    • Anne Rowberry on BBKA Trustees
    • Robert Whittick on Bee Keeper to Bee Farmer
    • Kevin Pope on the Asian Hornet situation
  • Extras: Thornes, Northern Bee Books, Vita, Dorset Wildlife Trust, 
  • More Extras: Tea and Coffee
  • Cost: £8 to DBKA members and £10 to all others.
  • Tickets: from here.