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Brosville 

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http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/mar/05/beekeepers-endangered-bees
good old Guardian! - an article by Alison Benjamin

"The reason the buzz of bees was quieter last summer is because the government's bee inspectors can't keep tabs on us hobby beekeepers. That, at least, was the conclusion of a report yesterday from the National Audit Office.

One in three hives were wiped out by a blood-sucking parasite that feeds on the bees and their larvae and spreads nasty viruses. Unless they are controlled, infested colonies can die out - and we're being accused of letting this varroa mite run riot.

But hang on a minute. All the beekeepers I've met since taking up this hobby three years ago care deeply about their bees. Why would they fail to take precautionary measures against the bees' assailant? Lack of knowledge perhaps?

Well, anyone who has read a beekeeping manual, or gone on a course - and let's face it, donning your beekeeping suit and confronting a 50,000-strong colony without some preparation would be pretty daft - will be well aware of the pesky mite, which no hive in the UK is free from. You can spot the tiny brown dot on the bees, or more easily on the white larvae. Feeding your bees a natural jelly-like substance made from thymol in the autumn is the best protection.

Tracking down the estimated 20,000 beekeepers at large wouldn't be difficult; those collecting a swarm of bees from an association or a commercial apiary could be required to register them. But this won't solve the problem of our bees dying at an alarming rate. For one thing, there simply aren't enough bee inspectors to go round because of government cuts to its National Bee Unit.

The truth is that the jury's still out on what is killing our bees. What about the role of pesticides? The European parliament and the Co-op supermarket thinks there is enough of a case against bee-toxic chemicals to ban some of them. What we need is more funding for research in this area - rather than attacking the very people who are trying to help save our bees"

Alison Benjamin co-wrote "A world without Bees"
 

hedgerow pete 

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what is it with this country never has the nanny state become so real, i keep bee's for fun as a hobbie when i have to start filling loads of forms, it will be soon easier to get a shot gun licence than a bee licence,

i know i could be come an under ground bee keeper( not quite thought that one out) but a bove ground what if my bees are kept not in hives but inside wheelie bins, urban disuise or in the country side how about a bmw or a range rover loads of them in the country, i could be a honey dealer hanging outside asda going alwrite love fancy some sweet stuff !!!!
 

Polyanwood 

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I thought Alison's article was a breath of fresh air compared to the one in The Times the day before.
 

Poly Hive 

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What is the deal in England about Bee Inspectors?

Anyone?

There are none in Scotland and to the best of my limited knowledge never have been.

So what difference do they really make? Feel good factor?

I had to fill out a form for HMG telling them where my bees are... Goodness me but I begrudged that info. So you can gather my take on Gov here.

PH
 

Bcrazy 

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Hi PH,

I don't know why Scotland do not have Bee Inspectors.

Why do we have Bee Inspectors?

I am not going to put my neck on the block but have a good idea why.

Regards;
 

Polyanwood 

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Most people really like bee inspectors in England. They are usually helpful, knowledgeable and friendly. The odd thing going on is the threat of the Stalinist approach to registration and and inspection.

Have heard a commercial beekeeper on TV and radio slagging off hobbyists and blaming them for all the disease problems of bees. He seemed to think that compulsory registration and compulsory treatment would be best. As far as I can tell there is only him saying this, but he is influential. Perhaps he is the Evil one and the bee inspectors would be his enforcers??

Doesn't make sense to me. Who understands?
 

Hivemaker. 

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Compulsory,not a word i'm very fond of,or have much to do with,and treatment for what,and with what,and by who?
 

mikeyspikey 

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The Germans are pretty good at beekeeping... have they got Inspectors?
Genuine question but I suspect I know the answer.
 

Busy Bee 

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Should it not be possible to create a Bee Keeping day to encourage people to threat their swarms and make it national with readily available treatment you can buy from the chemist to treat Bees. Make it very public, with intensive advertising to remind keepers to treat their bees, this would mainly be directed at hobbists. HAVE A BEE DAY LOOK AFTER YOUR BEES


Just a thought


Busy Bee
 

Brosville 

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buy icing sugar from a chemist? - oh I forgot, that won't be allowed because there's no profit in it for the agrochemical/pharmaceutical industries - silly me!:svengo:
 

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