OKEHAMPTON Beekeepers held the first of their June apiary meetings at Crockernwell on June 18, welcoming some newcomers to the group.

The branch regularly holds practical beekeeping meetings at members' apiaries, when hive inspections and manipulations are demonstrated.

More than 20 members turned up for the meeting at Janet Grist's apiary, and newcomers and experienced group members alike got to inspect Janet's seven active colonies.

The overcast weather conditions for the inspection were not ideal, but the hives were relatively docile.

Janet's final inspection of the day revealed a strong colony with the brood box full of bees and continuous healthy looking sheets of sealed brood and young larvae. The decision was made to split the colony due to overcrowding.

The afternoon's activities concluded with a 'Bring and Share' tea in Janet's farmhouse. The branch held its first evening session on June 21.

The branch is planning to have a beekeeping tent and honey show at the Okehampton Show on August 11.

For more information call chairman Ray King on 01363 772007.