Challenges see bees on their knees

AT WORK: Many Australian crops rely on pollination by bees, and around 70 per cent of their honey manufacture comes from native flowers that mostly inhabit public land.

BEEKEEPERS are facing increasing challenges to do with placing hives, putting both honey production and the vital pollination services that the bees provide at risk. 

Access to public land is increasingly being restricted in state forests and national parks because European honey bees are not considered native to Australia.

Research on access to public land is being conducted by the Honey Bee and Pollination RD&E Program, which is funded by the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation, and Horticulture Innovation Australia Limited.

Professional services company GHD is conducting the study to provide beekeepers with a better understanding of the varying state policies on beekeeping in these areas.

Spokesman for the program’s advisory panel, James Kershaw, said the importance of continued access cannot be understated.

“Many horticultural and agricultural products rely on European honey bee pollination,” Mr Kershaw said.

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