Latest news

Stay up to date with the Bumblebee Conservation Trust’s latest news and happenings right here.


The Bumblebee Conservation Trust’s position on commercial imports of bumblebees

The Bumblebee Conservation Trust (BBCT) has been researching the impact of importations of commercially-produced bumblebees on native, wild bumblebees. Up to 50,000 bumblebee colonies are imported to the UK every year, for use in the pollination of crops such as tomatoes, apples and strawberries.

Research has shown that these colonies often carry pathogens which could cause disease in wild bees, and BBCT therefore makes the following recommendations:

  • The new screening requirements for England to be extended to cover all of the UK, and all other nations.
  • More legislation to improve the health certification of commercial bumblebees before export or distribution.
  • Improved quarantine and independent random inspection using genetic techniques, upon importation.
  • Environmental risk assessment and proof of pollination limitation as preconditions to importation.
  • ‘Pollinator Action Plans’ in each of the Countries in the UK so as to increase local wild bee populations through sympathetic management of the countryside and hedgerows thus reducing the need to import commercial bumblebees.
  • Encouragement for growers to use Bombus terrestris audax over non-native  subspecies.

Click here to read our full summary of the research and our position on this issue.


Update on our position on neonicotinoid pesticides

Following the announcement that two agrochemical companies are to take legal action against the EU regarding the temporary ban on the use of three neonicotinoid pesticides, the Bumblebee Conservation Trust wishes to re-state its position on these pesticides and the ban.


Workshop to help our declining bumblebees

An innovative conservation conference and workshop, hosted by the Bumblebee Conservation Trust, brought together leading practitioners and conservationists to share practical ideas and approaches to create sustainable, effective habitats for bumblebees and other pollinators. It took place at The Royal Holloway University, London on 7th November.

The Bumblebee Conservation Trust, along with key partners, has demonstrated that specific land management techniques can create more suitable land for bumblebees, as well as providing a whole range of benefits for other wildlife, especially birds and butterflies.


Short-haired bumblebee nests in the UK for the first time in 25 years

The Short-haired bumblebee reintroduction project has been boosted by the discovery of several worker bees, following the introduction of 50 queens of that species earlier this year.


Birds helping bees

Chippindale Foods Limited (CFL) and the Bumblebee Conservation Trust (BBCT) are partnering to help halt the decline of Britain’s bumblebees.   The partnership will develop bee-friendly habitats on Chippindale’s farms throughout Yorkshire and the north east of England.

Chippendale Foods Limited