There is a place near Ollerton, Nottinghamshire, called Thoresby Park, which includes the Victorian Thoresby Hall Hotel, a craft centre and pleasant riverside surroundings to meander around.
It was along this river that Simon spotted a tree with unusual residents – honey bees.
I tend to associate honey bees with bee keepers, who keep them in hives and collect honey. If I had the time and a bigger garden, it is something I would like to do. There are bee keeping courses but is there a point if, at the moment, it is just a little ‘Good Life’ daydream?
Now wild honey bees is something I hadn’t come across before and for some reason, when I saw these bees I thought of Winnie-the-Pooh and his love of the sweet stuff. Wasn’t there a story of him ‘stealing’ honey from wild bees?
Even where I was standing, I could feel one in my hair. Not a nice sensation (!) but I edged away carefully and thankfully the bee realised I was no threat and flew away.
From Larousse’s Pocket Guide Wildlife of Britain and Europe, it says: ‘Most honey bees live in artificial hives, but wild colonies live in hollow trees and similar places’.
The Woodland Trust adds that the honeybees have been domesticated for centuries and, although they are commonly found feeding on flowers, ‘ it is rare to find a truly wild colony’.
So we were rather lucky to see such a colony. 🐝🐝🐝