Friars Hivers Beekeeping Club Members put on the bee suits with excited anticipation to harvest this season’s honey from the College beehive last Tuesday afternoon. In 2021, 15kg of honey was harvested off 7 frames and 30 500g jars were sold within days to eager staff. Ashlee, the Ben’s Bees beekeeper, ignited the smoker and opened the hive. The hive looked healthy with evidence of eggs (Sophia, the Queen Bee was doing her job!) no hive beetle and some capped honeycomb. After opening the two levels, Ashlee announced that there was no honey to harvest!! The La Nina climate conditions of a wet and cooler 2021 spring had been impacting the College hive. Bees don’t venture out to forage for nectar in those conditions and the increased heavy rain events had washed their food source from the local messmate and manna gum flowers. The group were disappointed but realistic. We are living in a world where the changing climate is putting a lot of pressure on species. Evidence of this is in our backyard. Will Stapelfeldt (11) has 24 hives and said he had little honey harvested this year also. He does have some honey for sale and can be purchased via Swarm Boy Instagram or by visiting Wallies Lollies lolly.com.au/honey-products or going in store at 8/205 Middleborough Rd, Box Hill South VIC 3128. The season has been difficult for the College bees. The members need to feed the bees instead a sugar solution. Thanks to Mrs Ciavarella, Mr Height, Mrs Dingley, Mrs Worthington, Mrs Alexander and Mr Berryman for their participation on the day.
Ms Jo Menzies
Sustainability and Environment Facilitator