What, you may ask, are you on about.
Well swan feathers can play an important role in beekeeping. Many of us have a bee brush with which we brush bees from frames and our bee suits. The problem with the standard bee brush is that it is too easy for bees to get tangled in the fibres. An entangled bee is not a happy bee, and we all know what that leads to.
An alternative tool is to use a swan feather. It has the advantage that it is plastic free and bees do not get tangled in it. The problem is getting hold of swan feathers. Swans do not appreciate you grabbing their feathers. However, there is an easier way to obtain feathers and that is through online suppliers. One I have been recommended is Gold Leaf Supplies from whom feathers can be obtained for about £1.25 each.
This is the time of year to be buying swan feathers as it is moulting time for swans. If you want to take more biosecurity precautions then perhaps buy a feather for each of your apiaries