Mariusz Chudy has been a beekeeper for over 30 years, and the bees are his life and his passion. He knows the importance of bees for pollination.
This past weekend was one of the saddest days in his life. When he arrived at his bee site in Kinoulton, Nottinghamshire in the UK, he was met by a very strong smell of gasoline (petrol in the UK).
As he took account of the devastating sight before his eyes, he realized that many hives were set on fire the night before, killing around 1 million bees. The six hives had been made of recycled materials by Chudy. Three hives were utterly destroyed, and three others were partly burned.
He was completely heartbroken and devastated and can’t imagine who would do such a thing. Nor does he understand the people that did this, or why they killed six colonies of bees and destroyed all the equipment.
This unrelated 1:37-minute video by CBS Sacremento shows a US beekeeper who lost a million bees in a fire almost one year ago, and is now making a comeback:
Chudy was not only grieving the death of his bees, but he was also worried about the environmental impact of an entire farm having been set on fire. He said this incident affects the farmers and animals adjacent to his farm as well.
He was more concerned about the bees’ lives than about calculating his losses. He estimates the value of each hive was £1,200 to £1,500 when materials, bees, and honey are included.
Mr Chudy sells honey, bee bread, and candle wax under the brand name Goldendrops.
The Nottinghamshire Police were notified of the incident. An ongoing investigation is checking into this attack, according to Thomas Rawlings from West Bridgford police station.
Mr Chudy plans to rebuild his colonies but is considering moving to a different location. He and his daughter do not have any known enemies, but they fear this may not have been a one-time event. The farm was not advertised so few people knew there were bees out there.
The inspector called this out as an intentional and cruel act, malicious, wanton vandalism that killed all the bees and left the owner devastated. He urges anyone with knowledge about the attack to come forward.
Farmer David Rose owns the land where the bee site is located and was equally shocked and concerned. Plans were afoot to host an open day soon to show the public the importance of bees.
Customer Steven Mayfield has set up a fundraising page and has already raised over £800 to rebuild Mr. Chudy's beehives.