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Queen replacement survey results
Tue, 14 Aug 2018 15:11:23 GMT

Defra would like to thank everyone who took the time to respond to this survey. The working group that put this survey together are very much encouraged by your interest and engagement in this topic. It clearly shows that it is an important issue for beekeepers and government alike.

A pdf summary report of the questions is attached. We hope this will be of interest to you.

We are continuing to work with beekeeping organisations on the analysis of these results and also looking at options for ways to improve our ability to rear queens in the UK.

The Queen Rearing Working Group is chaired by Defra with representatives from the National Bee Unit (NBU), the Bee Farmers’ Association (BFA), the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA), the Bee Improvement and Bee Breeders’ Association (BIBBA) and the National Diploma in Beekeeping (NDB).

Queen Replacement Survey Results

New Asian Hornet Trap Recording in BeeBase Beekeeping Records
Fri, 22 Jun 2018 15:11:23 GMT
Dear Beekeepers.

The National Bee Unit (NBU) has added a new BeeBase feature to help understand UK Asian hornet surveillance.

In April 2018 a single Asian hornet queen was photographed by a member of the public in Bury, Lancashire, on a cauliflower which was traced back to a farm in Boston, Lincolnshire. The NBU has continued to monitor for the hornet’s presence in both counties but to date, has found no Vespa velutina at either of these sites.

Many Beekeepers are monitoring for Asian hornets and BeeBase apiary records have been improved so beekeepers can record when traps are located in their apiaries. Please update your records to help us understand where traps have been placed across the UK in the ‘my apiary’ tab. Guidance on how to use the new recording feature, as well as additional information about how to log into your BeeBase account can be found in our Beekeeper Pages FAQ.

The NBU will continue to update you on Asian Hornet surveillance throughout the year.

Asian hornet identified in Lancashire
Wed, 20 Jun 2018 15:11:23 GMT
The National Bee Unit has confirmed a sighting of a single Asian hornet in Lancashire. More information can be found in the Defra Press release:


Further guidance on the Asian hornet can be found on the Asian hornet pages of BeeBase including an Asian hornet ID sheet and Asian hornet poster .

We have written a monitoring trap for the Asian hornet fact sheet and an Asian hornet trap making video to help assist you in monitoring for the Asian hornet.

You can report sightings with your smart phone or tablet, by using the ‘Asian hornet Watch’ app for Androids and iOS. The app also uses GPS which allows the user to submit the exact location of their finding, allowing any confirmed sightings to be followed up quickly and efficiently.

Alternatively, you can submit your sighting by email. When doing so, please include as much information as possible, including where you saw the sighting, name, contact number/ address and if possible an image. Send your sightings to: alertnonnative@ceh.ac.uk.

Finally you can also use the online recording form which can be found at:


Please could all media enquiries be directed to the Defra press Office: 0208 2257317

We thank you in advance for your co-operation.
Live Data Maps
Wed, 13 Jun 2018 15:11:23 GMT
Please note: We are currently experiencing issues with our live data maps and apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.
Swarms of honeybees
Tue, 15 May 2018 15:11:23 GMT
The National Bee Unit has been receiving a large amount of calls regarding honey bee swarms. Please note that we do not deal with swarms, however, you may find the following advice useful in re-directing your enquiry:

First of all it is important to establish what sort of insect it is. Usually, beekeepers are only willing to assist with honey bees. The British Beekeepers Association(BBKA) website holds list of volunteer Swarm Collectors and has a very useful identification and guidance page.

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© 2018 Phil Chandler    Friends of the Bees
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