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The Bee Free Zone

This is our education and Visitor Centre where our guests can watch and learn about the bees in complete safety.

During spring each year, we will be adding bees into the Observation Hive where you will be able to watch their comings and goings as they go about their daily life.

For children, they will have the opportunity colour one of the many posters we have with the wax crayons we have provided.  

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Colouring Corner

Quite apart from learning something about our bees and their value to us as pollinators, children can pick any of our bee pictures to colour whilst in the Bee Free Zone.

Click the bee to see all of the pictures we have available ...

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Colouring Corner

Just some of the many images coloured by the children (and parents!) who visit the apiary that we find pinned up around the Bee Free Zone.
 

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The Observation Hive

The Observation Hive in our Bee Fee Zone is our pride and joy!  Designed to support a full colony of around 45,000 bees, you just cannot get any closer to them than this!

You are at liberty to open the doors and watch the bees at work anytime you visit us - all we ask is that you close the Observation Hive doors after you - the bees like to work in the dark!

For children, (and adults alike!) they have great fun in trying to find the queen amongst all of the bees.  It's a fact that children are better at this than grownups are - probably because their eyesight and focus it just that much better!
 

During late autumn, the bees will be removed and put into a standard hive where they can form a tight cluster to keep themselves warm over the winter months.

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The Visitors Book

Your comments and remarks are important to us - so if you get the chance, please use the Visitors Book to let us know about your experience.  You may have some good ideas or suggestions that we just haven't thought of!  We've already responded to some of the comments just by providing answers to some of your questions about the bees.

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Have a go!

Don't be surprised if on one of our regular inspection days, we invite you to have a go with us!  We've got plenty of spare beesuits to suit all ages and sizes.  

That would give you something different to chat about with your work colleagues and friends on Monday morning telling them you were handling a colony of around 50,000 bees! 

Watch an Inspection

From the safety of the Bee Free Zone, you can watch and learn with us during the active season, when we will be inspecting our colonies each Saturday at around 1:00pm. 

We use these practical sessions to teach our Beginners the skills and knowledge they need to be able to manage their own bees.

 

At other times, just watching the activity at the hive entrance is a calming and fascinating pastime - see how many different colour pollens you can identify that the workers bring back on their legs ...

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Touch & Feel

In addition to the educational signs you'll find in the Bee Free Zone, you'll also find on display a variety of some of the tools that a beekeepers uses during a routine inspection of a colony. 

 

Squeeze the Smoker bellows and smell the aroma of smoke that comes out!

The straw skep in the corner is the type of hive that bees used to be kept in.  We still use these today but not usually as a home for a colony - more for show or as a very handy container for collecting a swarm of bees into.

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