• dudleypestintercep

Why you can't kill honey bees

Updated: Sep 3, 2021

What can and can't be done with honey bees -

Firstly, let's answer the question we are most asked about bees. Are honey bees a protected species in the UK? The simple answer is NO! No type or species of bee, be it honey bee, bumblebee, or solitary bee, no bees in the UK at this point in time (2021) have legal protection. The Pest Interceptors really want bees to be fully protected under law.

Ok that was the simple answer. Now here's the complicated, true, and factual situation with bees.

Although the honey bee isn't a protected species, there are situations that make killing bees illegal. Firstly, there is no product, professional use or amateur use, that can be used on honey bees. A few years ago there was a professional use only product called Ficam D that listed wild bees on it's label. This is a dust that would be blown into the entry to the nest and carried into the nest. But the label has changed recently, so now it would be illegal to use it on bees.

Some products mention flying and crawling insects on their label. Some unscrupulous pest controllers will still use this legal loophole to destroy bee colonies. All the products that carry the 'flying and crawling insects' on their label are, to my knowledge, wet sprays. To use a wet spray to kill a large colony of honey bees would simply not work by spraying the product into the honey bees' entrance points. It would need to be sprayed directly onto the colony. To spray onto the colony, you would need to expose the colony (remove bricks, tiles etc, or in the case of bees in a chimney, you would need to get up to the top of the chimney to spray down it.) At this point once the colony is exposed, it would be illegal to spray a toxic poison onto the colony as the least toxic method must always be used to remove the problem/pest. The least toxic method would be to remove and relocate the honey bee colony, not spray it with insecticide.

The truth is this -

  1. There are no products to legally use on honey bees.

  2. If you find someone unscrupulous enough to kill your bees by using the 'flying insects' loophole, to do the job properly he will need to do 90% of the job of removing the bees in a legal way, so why not just save the bees?!?!

  3. Killing the bees will lead to many other problems in the future, including re-infestation by bees, honey leaking through ceilings and walls, other pests living off the unguarded honey/wax etc. There's another blog dedicated to this here.

  4. If we save your bees, we will send you a jar of their honey as a thank you from us and the bees.

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