How we plan to work with beekeepers to improve the health of honey bees.
Healthy Bees Plan 2030
The Healthy Bees Plan 2030 is published on BeeBase. The plan aims to sustain the health of honey bees and beekeeping in Wales and England over the next decade. It was developed in partnership with the Bee Health Advisory Forum.
The Healthy Bees Plan 2030 builds on the previous Healthy Bees Plan published in 2009.
Registration of your apiaries
BeeBase is the National Bee Unit’s (NBU) website. It provides beekeepers with a wealth of information on bee pests and diseases, as well as advice on good husbandry.
You do not have to be registered to access information on BeeBase. However, we strongly recommend people register their apiaries on Beebase. Registration is free.
Having reliable records of beekeepers and their apiaries across the country helps the NBU to:
- conduct surveillance
- control the spread of serious honey bee pests and diseases.
This keeps the risk of pests and diseases managed.
Registered beekeepers are provided with a secure login. This enables them to record apiary details and view inspection records for their honey bees.
Beebase plays an essential role in mapping incidents of disease and collating information on beekeeping. It also provides up-to-date risk alerts on problems that could have an impact on the health of your honey bees.
By working with the NBU, beekeepers will be playing a very important part in helping to maintain and sustain honey bees for the future.
Notifiable Diseases and Pests
There are a number of notifiable diseases and pests in the UK, which may affect your bees. These include: American foulbrood, European foulbrood, Small hive beetle and Tropilaelaps mite. More information on these diseases and pests can be found on BeeBase. If you suspect they are present within your colonies, you must tell the NBU or your local bee inspector (contact details on Beebase) immediately. Failure to do so is an offence.
Reportable pest: Varroa mite
On 21 April 2021, Varroa mite (Varroa destructor and Varroa jacobsoni) became a reportable pest.
If you suspect the mite is present within your colonies you should:
- report this to the National Bee Unit by updating your BeeBase record
- fill in the report form available on BeeBase, if you are not registered with the National Bee Unit.
If you registered your apiaries on BeeBase before April 2021, your apiary has been defaulted as positive for the presence of Varroa.
You would only need to contact the National Bee Unit again if you need to change your apiary status to free-from varroa.
The National Bee Unit leaflet, Managing Varroa, gives advice on how to identify this pest and how to control it.
The Asian hornet is a species of hornet that is not native to the UK. It is smaller than our native hornet and single hornets pose no greater risk to human health than our native wasps and hornets. However, they do pose a risk to honey bees and pollinating insects. This is why we are keen to stop this insect establishing in the UK, and we are asking people to report suspected sightings.
If you suspect you have seen an Asian hornet you should report this using the iPhone and Android app ‘Asian Hornet Watch’. You can also use the online report form on the UK Centre for Ecology and Hydrology website. Alternatively, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include a photograph if you can safely obtain one. Identification guides and more information are available on the Non-Native Species Secretariat website.