I spent Friday and Saturday attending the Midland and South West Counties Convention at the Royal Agricultural University, Cirencester. It was a good venue for a meeting, complemented by an interesting and entertaining programme of talks. I discussed our developing story about the influence of Varroa on the transmission of pathogenic strains of deformed wing virus, together with brief coverage of both high and low-tech solutions that might be useful in controlling the detrimental impact of the mite on the virus population. On the Saturday I donned my beekeepers hat (veil?) and discussed queenright queen rearing methods … lots of stakeholder engagement to keep the funders happy 😉
There were some excellent presentations on the use of pollen in forensic studies (Michael Keith-Lucas) and the use of nucleus hives (Bob Smith). I had to leave early to make sure I caught my cancelled train to Swindon (“too many passengers”), the delayed connection to Paddington (“waiting for staff to turn up”), the slow running Heathrow Express (“engineering work”) and so missed my flight back to Edinburgh … all part of the rich outreach experience.