Freshers’ Fair Fliers, and a Dead Wasp

Our fliers for the LSE Freshers’ Fair have arrived from the printers!

We have a customised, limited-edition flier for each department at LSE – find your department below! Then visit us at the Freshers’ Fair tomorrow and Friday to visit us and pick up your fliers in person.

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And here’s a selection from our second set of fliers which are in colour:

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We had a fun visit today, with a couple of first-time visitors along with the usual suspects. Louise stole the limelight, with a bee costume that we will also be wearing at Fresher’s Fair (just so that you have no trouble identifying us!)

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But it was not all fun and games: we also got some work done. Since we took some of their honey last month, we made sure the bees were not lacking in food (the white hive and the cedar hive got a liquid sugar solution, while the painted hive and the nuc got solid food aka fondant).

We also took out some empty frames from the hives to reduce the hive cavity, making it easier for bees to keep their home warm as winter approaches. Our improvised rock pool had dried up in the hot weather, so we topped it up with water. The bottom-boards of the hives had bright yellow pollen which Luke identified as coming from dahlia (thankfully there were no varroa mites). But our inspection of the bottom-boards also revealed a more sinister surprise: a dead wasp.

Unlike bees, wasps are carnivorous; they eat bees and take their honey. They are also bigger and stronger, and can sting multiple times (unlike bees which die after they sting). But bees have a clever method of fighting back. This particular colony had evidently vanquished the wasp and cast out its corpse to be eaten by ants.

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On that note, we can now reveal the answer to last week’s “Guess what” question. The picture showed “entrance reducers”. These are placed at the hive entrances, to reduce the opening that bees have to guard against invaders like wasps. Without the reducers in place, it is likely that the hive that was attacked by wasps would have seen far greater casualties.

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LSE Bees

This is a blog to follow the bee hives at LSE.

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