Approximately 90,000 of the 274,000 hives in the UK, each containing around 20,000 bees and worth some £600 a year to the economy, did not survive last year’s winter. Yes that’s a third of UK hives.
Beekeepers Demonstration and Mass Lobby @ Westminster 5th November 2008, organised by the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA)
The protest went off well in that the BBKA got some news coverage. It was a grey and drizzly day unfortunately but some good photos were taken;
image: EDDIE MULHOLLAND
Photographers obviously enjoyed the smokers;
- Honey bees contribute £165 million per annum to the agricultural economy.
- The Government spends just £200,000 per annum on bee health research.
- The varroa mite is destroying bee colonies and is resistant to most approved medications.
- Foul brood diseases are ever present and require constant monitoring and control.
- New exotic threats such as the small hive beetle are expected in the UK anytime.
- Colony Collapse Disorder responsible for massive losses in the USA may emerge here.
- We don’t know enough about bee disease control and the medicines available are inadequate.
What do we want
- The Government to invest just £1.6 million per annum in research to help find solutions.