Biodiversity loss impacts the delivery of vital ecosystems that we all rely upon, food provision being one good example.  The conservation of biodiversity, especially bees, is crucial. If we fail to protect biodiversity now, future generations will be significantly affected in terms of the food, habitats and ecosystem they will have access to.

Burges Salmon have partnered with Lawrence Weston Community Farm (LWCF) charity for more than five years and during 2022 we started a new initiative: to have a Burges Salmon beehive at their farm. As part of this initiative our people are learning about biodiversity and engaging in volunteering activities including assembling the beehive, maintaining it regularly and extracting honey.

August last year saw our people help with honey extraction, from the beehives which are already in-situ at the farm. Members of our Construction & Engineering legal team volunteered alongside one of our clients to start assembly of the Burges Salmon beehive, which is made of British Western Red Cedar. By December students from the University of the West of England, who are studying Conservation, helped with the assembly of the beehive and in February more Burges Salmon people returned to finish the job.

Come April, quick action was needed. One the beehives at the farm needed a new queen, or the bees would have died. One of the resident beekeepers worked fast and kindly donated a hive of his that had a strong queen, to save the farm hive. The beekeeper then put his hive into one of Burges Salmon’s brood boxes and then put the farm’s hive on top. Here’s a link to what he did: How to Combine Two Beehives with Newspaper - Carolina Honeybees

So the two merged hives became the Burges Salmon beehive and last month some of our people located, marked and moved two queen bees between hives and helped release a rescued swarm into a new hive.

Collaboration is vital if we are to adequately tackle the biodiversity crisis. Resources, knowledge and awareness all need to be raised and projects such as this one help deliver on all three of these fronts. We look forward to this year’s harvest and further work we can do with the community farm and other biodiversity focused partners.

Written by Angela Parfitt