BDBKA SWARM COLLECTION PROTOCOL

The following protocol is to be observed by members (Swarm Officers) of ‘The Barnet and District Beekeepers’ Association’ when collecting swarms in the name of the Association.

1. Under no circumstances should the Swarm Officer agree to attempt something for which he is not qualified, skilled, equipped and insured.

2. BBKA Public Liability insurance covers members for claims arising from their beekeeping hobby, but not for commercial purposes.  All charges for swarm collection should therefore be in respect of expenses incurred rather than a service fee or charge.

3. The charge should be explained to the caller, before the Swarm Officer sets out to the scene of the swarm.  The Swarm Officer must emphasise that whilst every skill and care will be exercised, a successful outcome cannot be guaranteed.  It should be made clear that this charge is only to cover the Swarm Officer’s expenses and that it does not necessarily mean that the swarm will be removed.  An extra charge may be incurred for removal.

4. The Swarm Officer must agree a specific time to attend.

5. On arrival at the scene, the Swarm Officer must immediately mark an exclusion zone with tape or flags and display warning notices (see Annex A ) to discourage members of the public from getting too near to the swarm and to negate or minimise any claim of negligence.  Where appropriate the home owner/s should be told to close windows and doors.

6. The Swarm Officer should wear protective clothing at all times.

7. The swarm may be taken at any time of the day, but must not be moved until dusk to minimise the number of bees lost which can subsequently cause a nuisance.  Once the Swarm Officer approaches a swarm with the intention of collecting and removing it, he has a duty to protect bystanders.

8. The Swarm Officer must make sure he has all the equipment likely to be needed (e.g. ladder, secateurs, large sheet, skep or swarm box, string, smoker, fuel, matches, protective clothing etc).

9. Any equipment provided by a third party i.e. ladders etc, must be safe and in good condition.  The Swarm Officer must check that it is safe and in good condition before using it.  If any equipment provided by a third party is unsafe, it must not be used.  The Swarm Officer must advise the provider of the equipment, that he and/or the Association will not be held responsible for any damage to the equipment that he might cause while using it.

10. The Swarm Officer must advise the owner of the property or his representative that he and/or the Association are not responsible for any damage that he might cause while attempting to catch the swarm.

11. When a swarm has been removed, the Swarm Officer must explain that any remaining bees will not survive for long or become a nuisance.  The Swarm Officer must leave a contact phone number in case of unexpected problems.

12. The owner’s agreement should be obtained in advance before any branches are cut, lopped or otherwise removed.

13. The charge set by the Association should be made when the swarm does not pose a threat to public safety.  The charge may be waived when, in the Swarm Officers opinion, there is a good reason for doing so.

14. When the landowner/occupier can be identified, the Swarm Officer must obtain a signature to the Agreement.  See Annex B before commencing work.


 

Annex A

 


 

Annex B

SWARM ASSESSMENT or REMOVAL AGREEMENT

1. I ………………………..…….. agree to ……………….…………… a Swarm Officer of the Barnet and District Beekeepers’ Association, assessing or attempting to remove a honey bee swarm from my property.

2. I agree to pay the Swarm Officer’s expenses of £…………. irrespective of whether the swarm is removed.

3. I understand and agree that the Swarm Officer and/or the Barnet and District Beekeepers’ Association will not be liable for any damage negligently or accidentally caused while attempting to remove the swarm.

4. I understand and agree that the Swarm Officer and/or the Barnet and District Beekeepers’ Association will not be liable for any damage negligently or accidentally caused to any equipment which belongs to a third party and/or the owner/occupier of the property and which is used in attempting to assess or remove the swarm.

Signed:

………………………………………………….……… Dated:…………..

 

 

 

 

 

 

Address:

……………………………………………………………………………

 

 

 

……………………………………………………………………………

 

 

Post Code:

……………………………………………………………………………

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