Beekeepers Lose One Sixth Of Hives

Beekeepers lost one in six hives last winter due to disease and cold weather, according to the latest statistics. The losses are much higher than the natural rate of up to 10 per cent and reflect growing concerns that bee numbers are falling in Britain.

However, beekeepers are optimistic that colonies are in better shape than previous years, especially after such a harsh winter. In 2008/09 one in five hives were lost over the winter and a third died out the year before.