Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Leamington Bees Seek Adoption

By Action 21's Kathy W.

Busy bees at Leamington’s environmental charity Action 21 are inviting residents to help local bee hives survive in the face of alarming decline, by adopting a bee.

The charity has 196 honeybees waiting to be adopted in its new observation hive at its Sustainability Centre in Jephson Gardens. The hive has been installed in a bid to take action locally to help to protect against Colony Collapse Disorder, which sees honeybee colonies dying out worldwide even though no-one fully understands why.

Bee sponsors will be helping to prevent dwindling bee populations in Leamington as well as supporting the town’s ecology, which would suffer from a lack of bees as agriculture, gardens and the environment would all be affected.

Action 21’s Beekeeper Amy Footer said, “There are many fun benefits to adopting a bee. You can name your bee, have a unique photographic portrait taken of your bee to keep, receive ‘bee-mail’, which gives you regular updates of how your bee is ‘bee-having’, plus we are setting up a bee-cam so you can watch your bee from home. You can also pop into the centre at Jephson Gardens to visit your bee and watch it at work through the glass-sided hive.”

For only £2 a month, which goes towards bee keeping equipment and upkeep of the hive, sponsors will also receive a quarterly newsletter and an exclusive yearly invitation to Action 21’s ‘Meet the Beekeeper’ session. Plus the charity offers a Bee Guarantee whereby if you discover your bee has passed on, they will allocate you a new bee at no extra cost.

Action 21’s hive has been built in partnership with the Warwick and Leamington branch of the Warwickshire Beekeepers’ Association, from recycled oak in accordance with the charity’s re-use objectives. The Branch has also provided the bees for the hive as well as support and mentoring.

Warwickshire and Leamington Beekeepers (W&LBK) Chairman Mick Smith said, “We are really pleased to be working with Action 21 on this important venture. What some people don’t realise is that besides making honey, bees are important because more than 40 percent of the food chain relies on them for pollinating crops. Locals can also help bees by creating bee friendly gardens or even by keeping bees themselves”.

If you would like to adopt a bee or find out more about bee keeping contact the Action 21 Office on (01926) 453030, go to the charity’s web site at www.Action21.co.uk or email info@action21.co.uk.

The observation hive will be on display to the public during the centre’s official opening on Saturday 11th September at the Willes Road end of Jephson Gardens.