Bee colonies ravaged by disease

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The Independent Online
The whole of England and Wales has been declared a statutory infected area after the government and beekeepers failed to halt the spread of a devastating disease among bees.

The varroa disease, a mite infestation of bees first found in Britain in 1992, has already ravaged bee colonies in the south-east and has spread as far as the Scottish borders, as well as throughout Wales. The statutory infected area was yesterday widened by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food to include Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Cumbria and Northumbria.

The designation makes the movement of bees into and out of the infected area prohibited except under licence.