The honeybee is becoming an endangered species, with the finger of blame pointing in multiple directions. Wild honeybees are nearly extinct in the UK and from 1985-2005 there was a 53 per cent decline in managed honeybee colony numbers. Parasites and disease, climate change and air pollution all have an impact on bee health, but perhaps the most serious of all is the impact of pesticides.
Heidi Herrmann is one of a growing throng of natural beekeepers. She is trustee and co-founder of the Natural Beekeeping Trust, and has been keeping bees for years. Instead of following traditional practice, this movement challenges long-standing methods and processes. Like other members, Heidi has adapted her bee care to suit the bees rather than her own needs.