A lot of people are familiar with the common European honey bee, but many may not realise that there are hundreds of native bee species in Australia.
The interest in native bees seems to be growing, judging by the response to the Native Bee Workshop recently hosted by the Macleay Landcare Network.
Presenter Dr Tim Heard, a long time researcher, author, and keeper of native bees, shared his thorough knowledge and practical skills with the enthusiastic audience at the Kempsey Showground.
Gladstone resident Judith Halliday was impressed with Tim’s knowledge of bees and unbiased comparison of the European bees to the native bees.
“I enjoyed the workshop and found that it answered all the questions that I had,” Judith said.
“He certainly provided us with everything we needed to know to successfully keep native bees and the inspiration to get started.”
Bees provide a valuable service in pollination and have co-evolved with the development of flowering plants.
Australian bees are much smaller than the European honey bees, and are typically black in colour.
Only the stingless native bees make and store honey, which is the highly prized bush tucker the Indigenous have named ‘sugarbag’.
Through the work of Dr Heard, the option of keeping stingless native bees is now easier to realise.
You can find out more about Australian native bees at Sugarbag Bees (https://sugarbag.net/).
Stay ahead with local news by signing up for the Macleay Argus newsletter here.
Also making the news: