FAQ

What does this site do?

This site provides an easy solution to clubs managing the swarms that are reported to them. We provide a faster, easier and more unified method of connecting the swarm with a beekeeper for rehoming allowing for more swarms to be successfully rehomed and less spam overall as the beekeepers only get notifications of the swarms in specific areas that they are interested in covering.

How do I change my profile picture?

Once logged in navigate to the home page by clicking on the home button or the bee icon at the top left. Click on the down arrow on the far right of the yellow header bar at the top next to the square profile image and select "Change my Profile Picture".  Click on the grey box that says "Drag or click here to upload photo" and select your desired profile picture. Click on the orange save thumbnail button to save it.

Profile pictures are really useful as it shows the person requesting help with a swarm who to expect. 

How do I subscribe to a postcode?

The easiest way is to use the search function, top right on the web browser. Search for the first postcode you wish to receive notifications from and join them individually by clicking the "Join button" in the top right of the white page.  Note that you only need the first part of the postcode.  Join each one individually. 

How do I decide which postcodes to join?

You can join any postcode or as many postcodes as you like.  You can join postcodes in an area controlled by your local club and society or indeed one of your neighboring districts. You can join and unjoin postcodes at any time or indeed mute the notifications from individual postcode groups. 

Couple of tools to help

If you are a beekeeper happy to travel a set distance from your home, then use free map tools to output a list of all the postcodes within a set radius of any postcode in the UK. Remember to select the tick box to ask for outcodes only.  

https://www.freemaptools.com/find-uk-postcodes-inside-radius.htm

 

To see a specific area of a postcode use: https://www.freemaptools.com/uk-postcode-map.htm.

 

Unfortunately, we cannot reduce the areas of interest beyond the "Out postcodes" as there are already 3004 sections.  Taking it smaller still will create far too many groups and the site will become swamped. 

How do I get more swarms?

1. Join LOADS of groups.  Cover as large an area as you're happy with and keep an eye on the groups that are as far as you are happy traveling to.  Many people are members of just one postcode and they are therefore not likely to get many swarms.  Some people have 20 or50 groups.

2. Make sure you are getting the notifications.  Check the spam folder use the test group to make sure that the emails are coming through. 

3. Use the App.  The app notifications are far more reliable and far quicker than emails.

4. Be prepared.  When I want swarms, I load my car up with my kit before going to work so I can race to get them with very little notice.

5. Spread the word.  the more swarm collectors on the site the more people spread the word, the more swarms there will be.  Don't be defensive over your area as the more publicity we get the more swarms there will be to share so get all your friends onto the site. 

Why do I not get emails?

We have issues with automated emails getting sent to the spam folders or rejected by mail servers.  The site is sending emails properly but there are lots of different and often not so smart spam robots that screen the emails.  Make sure that the Admin@beeswarm.uk address is in your address book.  Check your spam folder and mark all our mail as "Not Spam" and make sure that you open the emails when you receive them.  This tells your email system that the messages are important.

 

Notifications work best through the app.  https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.beeswarm.app&gl=GB 

 

How do I unsubscribe from a postcode?

Once logged in navigate to the home screen, 1st button on the brown or the bee icon at the top left of the site. using the menu on the left select "My Groups" to display all your subscribed to postcodes and select the postcode from which you wish to unsubscribe. Click on the three dots in the top right of the postcode window and you can leave the group. 

 

Is there an easy way of describing swarm locations? 

If you are struggling to explain where a swarm is, then use What 3 Words.   This has mapped the entire UK down to a 3M x 3M square and assigned each square an address based on 3 words.

There is also a great app to go with this and it is very useful with many delivery companies and taxi firms now using it. 

 

Do Beekeepers charge for picking up swarms?

Most Beekeepers don't charge for a simple swarm rehoming but do expect to keep the bees as payment. More complex nest removals or relocations may be time-consuming and require additional tools and supplies. Some beekeepers request a contribution to petrol expenses or a small fee.  Fees should be discussed at the time of the first contact.   Beekeepers are not employed by the site and are free to do as they wish though any changes should be made clear before a beekeeper comes to visit.  

 

What happens to my personal information on the forum?

Everything posted to the site is publicly available and needs to be, in order to allow beekeepers to contact swarm reporters who do not have accounts with the site. We do however encourage the beekeeping clubs and societies to "Close the posts" once the job is complete thus sanitizing all personal information from the site.  This should protect people from having unnecessary information in the public domain, whilst keeping a record of the swarms in the different areas. 

 

Can I post a swarm notification without posting my phone number and full postcode?

Yes. You can post with just the first part of the postcode and 000 for the second and the phone number but then people will only be able to contact you via email.    Or you can set up an account and post via that account. People will be able to contact you via the platform mail (BeeMail) system.  

 

Can we have a running list of members of our club that can have the next swarm collected?

Yes. you would do this by having a post on your club page with the names that can be updated by the club secretary.

 

How much does it cost?

The use of the site and apps are free.  I'm trying to solve a problem, not to make money.  It is however expensive to build develop and run so I'm hoping to cover some of the costs from donations. Possibly some form of advertising too.  If you want to advertise your products to beekeepers and swarm collectors then do get in touch.

 

I am an experienced beekeeper who does not want to collect swarms but I do like giving advice to the public on their swarms and identifying bee types. Is there a place for me on the site?

Of course.  You are welcome to help out.  There is always lots of call for experienced eyes to look at photos and advise on the different types of bees or what can be done. You could also help out with teh runningof the site and administering of the swarm notifications.

 

Will BeeSwarm compete with my club's current system for swarm notifications?

Ideally Not.  BeeSwarm should complement your existing strategy, but if you like the BeeSwarmUK system then it could replace your club's system which may well cut down on your workload.

 

Do I need public liability insurance to collect swarms?

Public liability insurance will cover you if you damage someone or someone's property whilst out collecting swarms. This is essential if you are doing so as a business but as a non-charging amateur, you are often covered by your local BKA membership as part of standard beekeeping activities.

 

Where can I get additional advice?

Loads of great beekeeping clubs/societies and associations with loads of their own advice pages for swarms. Also WBKA and BBKA. Many of the clubs will have active profiles on this site and cover large areas of postcodes so feel free to ask them for advice.

 

Can I have my own BeeSwarm platform for my club or country?

We can develop and host individual versions of BeeSwarm including the apps for large clubs or even countries to use as a national resource.  Contact Admin@BeeSwarm.uk for details.