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Longueur: 507 pages6 heures


Bees-at-Law analyses the role and status of the most important animal on the planet.

though they may waggle-dance and play away at their rituals within the code of the law of nature, bees can become the object of and subject of our law. When people earn their livelihood amid the increasing noise of their neighbourhood, bees are often caught in the net of negligence and nuisance claims that are then tried in a humming courtroom.

How these animal architects survive as they build their hives and lives is examined through the cases of the United Kingdom and the main common law countries of the world.

Bees-at-Law considers the role of bees gauged by the duty and responsibility of their owners and bee-keepers owe to other people. Each has an equal place in a legal system that values the parties and their victims. There is a unique discussion on how protecting bees by law affects our future.

The power of an owner to recapture bees in trees resonates with our legal principles in action. For a swarm of bees can create their own chime as a mime of a modern canary in the coal mine. Though small in size the rise in their fall mirrors the health of our planet as bees are the lodestar of our law.

Bees-at-Law is a guide and reference for keepers and workers within the world of bees.

The author is a practising barrister who specializes in criminal law and human rights and animal law.


He looks at the value of bees, honey bee history, how dangerous bees can be, he examines in depth and width negligence in both principle and action by bees, beekeepers, farmers, neighbors and the like. He talks of pests, crime against bees, and finally searching for the soul of a bee.

He does all this using case studies...Citing work all the way back to Plato and even further, he analyzes the results of important, precedent setting cases and justifies, defends and explains the resulting decisions. Many of these were found in the US, many in the UK, and many in other countries. It is a look with a global view.

And it is one of the best histories of keeping bees I've run across. What happened when and why, and what happened because of it shape much of the legal issues bees, beekeepers and the world we inhabit together enjoy, or endure, depending on which side you are on

Kim Flottum
Bee Culture Magazine

Undoubtedly the most important bee book of the year by an expert in all forms of animal law. Will become the classic work on the subject and needs to be read by all those who have anything to do with bees.

John Phipps
The Editor
The Beekeepers Quarterly

This is a fabulously interesting book: the final chapter considers neonicotinoids and concludes that law is the only moral system that can now save bees. Highly recommended for anyone who cares for bees and the future.

Bees for Development

Sweeney has the rare gift of explaining technical law in a way which is accessible to lay people and students, without trying the patience of experts by adopting sluggish pace. There are sufficient ideas in each page to captivate any audience's attention; the cocktail of perspective analysis, humour and whimsical detail is reminiscent of the work of the late, great tort and comparative lawyer Tony Weir.

Even those who think that they have a reasonable level of background knowledge about either bees or private law are likely to be surprised by new discoveries...

Reverend Dr Helen Hall
The Anglican Society for the Welfare of Animals Journal
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