About Devon Apicultural Research Group

What is DARG?

The ‘Devon Apicultural Research Group’ or DARG was formed over 40 years ago. At the time there were some concern that Devon BKA branch meetings were necessarily aimed at beginners and risked boring more experienced members. It was therefore considered that there was a need for an experienced beekeepers group so several beekeepers got together and so DARG was born.

Our Membership

The membership has now expanded to include the counties of Dorset, Somerset and Cornwall . We includes all types of beekeeping methods and hive types, intending to be more bee centric and work with the local environment. Basing our actions on our research findings.

Along with this, it was generally recognized that beekeepers are very good observers but often jump to the wrong conclusions so DARG aimed to build on the observation strength and engage in research projects.

Fortunately one of the founders, the late Dr Len Heath, was a bee scientist. Other activities were to further the apicultural education of its members and to disseminate DARG’s findings.

Our aims

The primary aim is still to collect, analyse and report on data, which may aid the advancement of beekeeping. Over the years many projects have been carried out covering such diverse issues as Investigating the reason why queens are failing. Drone congregation areas, where they are and how drones and queens locate them. Locating feral colonies.

Trailing the new Beegym for varroa mite removal. Pollen identification and the effects of weather on honeybees. Please see the current activities page for more details.

If you are interested  in taking your beekeeping knowledge further and would like to join us for a trial, we meet every month in the bee shed at Buckfast Abbey, Devon. Where we have a variety of activities, projects and speakers from 1 to 4 pm.                                                                                                              We also visit other areas of interest regarding the honeybee.

Please email us for further information. membership@dargbees.org