Nutrition – Celle – “Not a fun event”: beekeepers need experience – economics

Celle (dpa / lni) – Keeping your own bees is becoming more and more popular, but future beekeepers need to be well trained. “You have to have specialist knowledge,” Otto Boecking, acting director of the bee institute in Celle, told the German Press Agency. “This is not a fun event or a stamp collection.” In terms of animal welfare, it is important that breeders meet certain standards. The Bee Institute is an institution of the Lower Saxony State Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (Laves). In the future, he also wants to provide more information through social networks and thus reach more young friends of bees.

This Friday, World Bee Day, a separate YouTube channel will start. For the instructional videos, the Bee Institute enlisted the support of an agricultural scientist and beekeeper, who is also a YouTuber.

According to Laves, since 2018 around 1,000 beekeepers have been added each year in Lower Saxony; about 20 percent are women, and the trend is increasing. There are now at least 14,000 keepers across the country caring for around 100,000 bee colonies.

Last fall, the coalition of SPD and CDU in Hannover announced that it wanted to campaign for a certificate of competency, a kind of beekeeper’s license, at the federal level. According to the director of the bee institute, this project has not yet been implemented.

About 80 percent of hobby beekeepers are already organized into clubs where they have access to information, Boecking said. It tries to reach the rest in other ways, for example, through social networks. According to the current legal situation, apiaries only need to be registered with the responsible veterinary authorities, operators do not need a permit.

They have a great responsibility for their animals, for example when there are disease outbreaks. The location of the hive is also crucial when starting. In a high-rise building, for example, animals are often exposed to too much sunlight and too much wind, the agricultural scientist said.

The Celle institute is not only concerned with honey bees and the training of amateur and professional beekeepers, but is also committed to the protection of wild bees. According to Boecking, there are around 580 species of wild bees in the entire country, of which 360 species are found in Lower Saxony. Half are at risk. The institute gives tips on how to make gardens and balconies more bee-friendly.

As plant pollinators, wild bees, like many other insects, are irreplaceable for our ecosystems. According to the Nature Conservation Union (Nabu), without insects we would have to do without many types of fruits and vegetables, for example.

© dpa-infocom, dpa:220520-99-362621/2

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