Can I collect swarms during the Covid-19 restrictions?

To confirm CBKA branch advice on swarm collection in these unusual times we are dealing with:

The BBKA swarm collection service will continue, so calls will still be coming in:

“24 March 2020
BBKA Chair Anne Rowberry says: “The swarm collection service will still be in operation during the pandemic.
Swarm collection can go ahead but you must take into account social distancing.
Risk assess the situation and do not take unnecessary risks as health services will be under pressure due to the Covid-19 Pandemic.
As always, only collect when it is safe to do so.”

Please use your best judgement when taking a call, and if you can avoid a trip, please do.

Be insistent on identification of honey bees;
Make it clear that honey bees are not protected, and we only offer the collection service as volunteers;
Offer reassurance that the swarm will probably disperse in a coupe of days if it has just arrived;
Only think about attending if the swarm has been there a couple of days or is causing a public nuisance;
Ensure you abide by all social distancing rules;
Do not attend swarms where you have to enter people’s homes


Can I Inpsect my bees with the current Covid-19 restrictions?

You may visit your bees for welfare purposes such as for checking feed or queen cell preparation.

“You must take into account social distancing and safe access

It is RECOMMENDED by your Branch Committee that you

  • print off and carry with you the guidance issued by both the National Bee Unit and also the BBKA.  This is at this link
    • note that this refers to apiaries which are registered on Beebase ie the locations can be checked/audited.  So if you have not already, GET REGISTERED on BeeBase
  • Take a photo(s) of your apiary sites and have a note of their address/map reference.  You can show this to anyone who is challenging your travel.