Italian bee information
We will be importing Italian bees from an area that is clear of small hive beetle, the area is southern Italy’s Puglia region.
Our precautions are as follows:
We met with the suppliers at Apimondia in Canada recently to satisfy ourselves regarding the professionalism of the company and its approach to beekeeping.
Having then had a telephone conversation with a seasonal bee inspector who tells me that in recent years bee inspectors had come across this company and they had supplied relevant health certificates and that the bees supplied had been in good health.
We are now planning to follow this up by visiting the suppliers on the 23rd January, two representatives of my company will go, myself a commercial beekeeper with over 300 colonies and nearly 20 experience I also hold the BBKA General Husbandry certificate, among other qualifications.
My colleague also a commercial beekeeper of many years’ experience and holder of several BBKA qualifications including general husbandry and is also a DASH (Disease Accreditation Scheme for Honeybees ) accredited Bee Farmer.
Between us we will spend two days examining hives and the sounding ground condition as well as the operation in general to assure ourselves of a good, well produced and professional breeding programme.
Only then will we confirm our order for 1.5kg package bees and queens, I emphasis “ Package bees” to avoid any confusion we will NOT be importing Nucs of bees on frames. The nuc setup is done in our own apiaries using only equipment prepared by us.
This is part of the health and security methods we use, the packages will be inspected by our seasonal bee inspector as required by DEFRA at the same time as they are decanted into our own 5 frame nucs, these will then be reared into the Nucs offered for sale.
We take the approach that just as with all races human included Ligustica will add a much needed diversification and strengthening of honeybee populations in the UK, this is borne out by much of the Buckfast Abbey and Brother Adams research and development of the Buckfast Bee, but this dwindled soon after Brother Adams death in 1996.
The original Buckfast Bee has since in many areas been depleted and crossed with all sorts including our own native black bee.