Quantcast

Ethical dilemma

Beekeeping Forum

Help Support Beekeeping Forum:

Bucks_Boy 

House Bee
Joined
Nov 26, 2008
Messages
101
Reaction score
0
Location
Buckinghamshire
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
12
A friend of a friend phoned me about a swarm in her garden. Having never even seen a swarm and a long way down the list of established club members who get callouts , I jumped at the chance but as the Tom Tom gave me instructions, I realised it was about 400 years away from our club apiary.

It was just like the pictures, 10ft off the ground, hanging on a branch, size of a big football.
A quick shake off into a linen basket, upside down on a sheet with a corner raised and a large proportion of flyers landed and marched into the basket.
An hour later, close to dusk, I shook them out in front of a hive my new out apiary and in they marched, along with a red-spotted queen. Just like the book says ( for a change!)

Now, my dilemma is that I'm pretty certain that it's from our club apiary ( very few houses near it and no known other apiaries within half a mile) . However, I'm looking to increase and this one has drawn out 8 frames of a National Broodbox in 7 days, with 2 frames of eggs already --

I feel I am depriving the association of revenue from honey sales and/or nuc sales to beginners.

This weekend we have a club event .. if I find that one of our hives has swarmed, do I own up or can I feel comfortable that the loss of a swarm is the fault of the hive management ?

Thoughts?
 

jon 

House Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
406
Reaction score
0
Location
N. Ireland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
40-50
Don't worry about it.
It's yours.
If people can't be bothered to take measures to prevent a colony swarming they shouldn't be surprised when the bees go awol.
There is no guarantee it came from your club apiary anyway.
 

marcros 

House Bee
Joined
Feb 13, 2009
Messages
259
Reaction score
0
Location
Yorkshire
Hive Type
none
Don't worry about it.
It's yours.
If people can't be bothered to take measures to prevent a colony swarming they shouldn't be surprised when the bees go awol.
There is no guarantee it came from your club apiary anyway.
agreed. providing that nobody was followiing it, it is yours.
 

Nellie 

Field Bee
Joined
Apr 28, 2009
Messages
627
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
3
To steal an old Emo Phillips gag.

What would I think if it was my colony that had swarmed?

That I'd want to be taught a lesson.

:D
 

VEG 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
6,830
Reaction score
0
Location
Maesteg South Wales
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
15+-some
Keep them they are yours. Or if you are feeling really bad about it I will have them. :cheers2::cheers2:
 

jimbeekeeper 

Queen Bee
Joined
Dec 14, 2008
Messages
2,470
Reaction score
1
Location
East Yorkshire
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
1
Despite the previous posters views I would be in the same view as you!

You have seen the queen is marked, and other factors strongley lead it back to the source.

I think the biggest problem (for you LBA) is the resulting mess in the orginal hive, are they soon to loose a cast?

bucks_boy said:
I feel comfortable that the loss of a swarm is the fault of the hive management ?
PS Have you invented time travel?

, I realised it was about 400 years away from our club apiary.
 

admin 

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
6,393
Reaction score
3
Location
Hampshire uk
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
6
If I found a beekeeper taking a swarm of bees over the road from my Apiary I would them him they were his/her's to keep no matter if they used to be mine or not.
 

grizzly 

Drone Bee
Joined
Nov 9, 2008
Messages
1,106
Reaction score
0
Location
Hampshire
Hive Type
langstroth
Number of Hives
6
If people can't be bothered to take measures to prevent a colony swarming they shouldn't be surprised when the bees go awol.
But what about those beekeepers who do everything in their power to stop the bees swarming, but they still swarm regardless ??

Whilst i agree with you, it is certainly something that should be considered.
 

VEG 

Queen Bee
Joined
Nov 10, 2008
Messages
6,830
Reaction score
0
Location
Maesteg South Wales
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
15+-some
I am of the opinion if they actually leave your hive they should belong to who ever finds them. After all if you are the only one around they would probably have gone elsewhere anyway. Just my 2p worth.
 

jon 

House Bee
Joined
Dec 4, 2008
Messages
406
Reaction score
0
Location
N. Ireland
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
40-50
But what about those beekeepers who do everything in their power to stop the bees swarming, but they still swarm regardless ??

Whilst i agree with you, it is certainly something that should be considered.
I suppose you could clip your queens to prevent an escape although I don't do this myself. I inspect every 7-8 days and split on discovery of the first queen cell.
 

planbee 

House Bee
Joined
Apr 13, 2009
Messages
182
Reaction score
0
Location
Staffordshire, UK
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
Two
I believe that the law say's something along the lines of "Whichever man captures a swarm of bee's, and has them when the Sun goes down, then they are his, and he becomes the Master of that swarm".

Yes, I know, that's Roman Law, and although the Romans are no longer here ["Over sexed, over paid, and over here"], and we probably can't get done for throwing stones in the Tiberius, I think if it were me, I'd claim them under Roman Law!

If anyone wants to take you to Court for theft, the Police would have a jolly time holding the swarm for "evidence" !!

John
 

Geoff 

House Bee
Joined
Mar 16, 2009
Messages
249
Reaction score
0
Location
Shropshire, UK
Hive Type
commercial
Number of Hives
5
I think they are only yours while they are in the hive. Once they jump out they become wild and its up to whoever can put them in their own hive to own. I think that is the legal view. But it doesn't help his moral dilemna. If it were me I would tell them and be upfront. If you had not done what you did the swarm would have been lost anyway to nobody's benefit. Due to your quick action you haver given, at your expense, exactly what the bees wanted which is a new home and new foundation. They could not have stayed in the old hive anyway cause they had decided to swarm. They would have to be a mean bunch of b.........s to deny you the swarm.
 

admin 

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
6,393
Reaction score
3
Location
Hampshire uk
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
6
I suppose you could clip your queens to prevent an escape although I don't do this myself. I inspect every 7-8 days and split on discovery of the first queen cell.
As a few members on here know I passed a kidney stone last week that put me out of action for 48 hours so I was 2 days late to inspect one of my out apiaries.

When I arrived I had a large primary swarm in a tree 30ft up,because the queen is clipped they all returned in around 40 minutes.

The hives are in a hay field so I never managed to find the queen but I still have a full hive of bees to work around.
 

admin 

Administrator
Staff member
Joined
Jul 28, 2008
Messages
6,393
Reaction score
3
Location
Hampshire uk
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
6
I believe that the law say's something along the lines of "Whichever man captures a swarm of bee's, and has them when the Sun goes down, then they are his, and he becomes the Master of that swarm".

John
I think they are still your's if you dont lose sight of them ?
 

Nellie 

Field Bee
Joined
Apr 28, 2009
Messages
627
Reaction score
0
Location
uk
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
3
I think they are still your's if you dont lose sight of them ?
That was my understanding, if you're actively pursuing "your swarm".

BBKA (only other reference I can find to law links to a book)
According to Roman law, swarms that are not hived are considered masterless. A swarm, since bees are wild by nature, belongs to the first person who hives it. If one of your colonies swarms, that swarm is yours so long as you can pursue it, otherwise it becomes the property of the first person who takes it
 
Joined
Nov 26, 2008
Messages
807
Reaction score
14
Location
Haddenham Buckinghamshire
Hive Type
14x12
Number of Hives
20
Hi Bucks Boy

Where do you live?? I am another Buck's Boy

I thought if you had sight of your swarm they were yours. If you come to collect a swarm and find a bee-keeper nearby, then politeness and gentlemanly conduct requires you to discuss the matter with him.

I was most peeved last year when my hive swarmed in late June, the day after I had left for warmer climes. My neighbour, a former beekeeper had seen the incident. He went to my Mother-in-law who showed him a made up hive I had left just in case. He declined to collect the swarm due to serious allergy issues. My M-I-L rang a colleague in the next village. He collected the swarm and headed over the parish boundary. He took great delight in telling me what a good swarm it was. I lost the hive as the virgin failed to mate, remember June weather 2008!!! If I was not such a mild mannered gent I think I may have come to blows over his attitude.

It does not matter what the rights, wrongs, laws and rules are. We should all behave in a sensible and polite manner. I think I will post tolerance, friendship and consideration as my motto.
 

buffalow 

New Bee
Joined
Jan 1, 2009
Messages
70
Reaction score
0
Location
South Staffs
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
30
Hi just started the beginers course at South staffs , in their literature it states "The swarm belongs to the collector" so I would not worry about kepping the swarm but I dont think I would be boasting about it at the association meet ..

By the way excellent forum!!!!
 

marcros 

House Bee
Joined
Feb 13, 2009
Messages
259
Reaction score
0
Location
Yorkshire
Hive Type
none
That was my understanding, if you're actively pursuing "your swarm".

BBKA (only other reference I can find to law links to a book)
but you dont have the right of tresspass, so must ask the landowner permission to go onto private property.

there is quite an interesting book about beekeeping and the law. presumably northern bee books stock it.
 

gtb 

New Bee
Joined
Dec 5, 2008
Messages
62
Reaction score
0
Location
Hampshire
Hive Type
langstroth
Number of Hives
4
I'll admit to be a bit saddened to read all the responses so far.

If I took a swarm with a marked queen and a reasonable idea where they came from I'd definitely try to reunite them with their original owner.

But hey ho... I guess bees are "valuable items" nowadays :(

Would you give a fellow beekeeper a frame of eggs, split or queen for free, just to help them out?

I hope we are not losing the "close community" of beekeepers :grouphug:
 

bombus 

New Bee
Joined
Mar 23, 2009
Messages
21
Reaction score
0
Location
Lincolnshire
Hive Type
national
Number of Hives
14
So, I'm walking down the lane, and come across a £100 ( possible value of a swarm today ) laying on the floor. I happen to know who it belongs to. What to do?

bombus
 

Latest posts

Top