Beekeeping chiropracter rescues swarms in Sidmouth
- Credit: Archant
A Sidmouth chiropractor takes time out of fixing slipped discs to tackle sting risks as she collects unwanted swarms of bees.
April Rose had a love of apiculture instilled in her as a child, but when her hive was crushed last year she decided to rescue the critters where they were unwanted.
She does it in an effort to sustain a population that is threatened by pesticides so leaves the honey for the bees to enjoy.
“I grew up in Birmingham and my dad always wanted to keep bees, but you needed a licence in those days – I suppose it started from there,” said April.
She did a natural beekeeping course at Embercombe, in which she learned how little bees need from humans.
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April was devastated when her hive was crushed last year when she was having a wall knocked down, and now she is starting again from scratch.
This is the time of year when hives are likely to be found. April has already had two calls, but neither hive could be moved.
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She can collect bees from various locations, including trees and attics, but has to be able to safely reach inside the hive.
When a queen is moved, the rest of the bees tend to follow.
The average hive contains around 60,000 bees and the queen is constantly laying eggs – some 2,000 a day, more than her body weighs.
April plans to rehome claimed swarms in her hive, and when that fills up she has beekeeping friends and customers who are interested in getting started who will take them.
“I will always be able to find a home for them,” she said.
Bees drink ‘tonnes’ of water, and on top of making honey to store for the winter, also make ‘bee bread’ and royal jelly.
But the foodstuffs can become contaminated with pesticides, such as neonicotinoids which have now been banned, so beekeepers are stepping in to reverse the decline.
April collects from Sidmouth, Seaton and the surrounding area.
To arrange a collection, call her on 07973 202441.