German supermarket chain Aldi has asked Sunderland-based Hadrian Technology to install four high-tech security cameras to protect the hives outside its Warwickshire headquarters.Aldi installed the insect observation hive as an interesting feature for staff and visitors, who will be able to watch 500,000 busy bees flying in and out of the eight hives on a giant screen in the retailer’s reception area. The CCTV will also keep the insects safe and secure as thousands of honey bees are stolen every year as a decline in bee numbers means hives, and queens, are worth more.

Over the summer, 30,000 bees and three queens were stolen from a honey farm in Anglesey, North Wales. Gary Trotter, general manager at Hadrian Technology, said: “This was a really unusual project for us, but we fit security cameras anywhere there happens to be a need – and even bees need security.

We have installed two internal and two external cameras protecting the entrances and the hives. It will help to protect the bees and all the equipment. We have also installed data infrastructure for Aldi to install two webcams to monitor the bees entering and leaving the hives.

The CCTV cameras were installed before the bees arrived and Aldi will be able to monitor the bees.

The provision of security cameras for the bee hotel is part of a larger project undertaken by Hadrian Technology to install and upgrade 300 CCTV cameras at Aldi’s distribution centre and car park, which is due to be completed this autumn.