BEE alert but not alarmed as local bee keepers warn of possible swarms across the Central Coast.
Weather conditions over winter and the start of spring have led to ideal breeding conditions meaning many hives are full and bees will be swarming to find new homes for their queens – which has members of the Central Coast Amateur Beekeepers Club worried.
Members like Barbara Elkins of Bateau Bay are urging residents not to call the local pest controller.
“We will come and get the swarms, please do not kill them,” she said.
“Just recently one of our members attended 12 swarms and was able to collect seven of them, the rest flew away.
“There could be a lot of swarms this weekend, the conditions are just getting better and better and we need to raise awareness so people don’t kill them.
“They won’t hurt you, they are full of honey, like drunken sailors.”
The Central Coast has ideal weather conditions for bees — mild winters and warm springs — meaning flowers are blooming early and full to the brim with pollen and nectar.
“There is just so much food around, so many spring flowers,” Ms Elkins said.
“We are lucky in Australia to have such healthy bees.”
Ms Elkins will be splitting her own backyard hive because it’s full and has a new Italian queen bee in a box in a cupboard waiting to go into the new hive.
“Bees are the most fascinating, interesting and creative creatures — they are just amazing to watch,” she said.
She is one of 80 or 90 members of the Central Coast Beekeepers Club which has an apiary where beginners can learn the craft from experienced beekeepers in a “hands on” manner.
The club meets on the third Wednesday of the month at Gosford High School Agricultural House at 7.30pm.
For to get help with swarming, please visit this page.
For more information about the Central Coast Beekeepers Club visit www.CentralCoastbees.org.au
WHAT TO DO IF YOU FIND A SWARM
1. Don’t panic.
2. Leave the bees alone, they are fairly docile when they are swarming and just protecting their queen and looking for a safe home.
3. Don’t call the pest company before one of the Central Coast Beekeepers swarm collectors have looked at it and or collected it. We need all the healthy bees we can get.
Collectors will bring a box to put the bees in and may leave it in your yard until
4. Call the Central Coast Beekeepers who have swarm collectors all over the coast and are happy to chat about the fascinating world of bees.
Article extracted from Daily Telegraph – http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/newslocal/central-coast/bee-swarms-on-the-move-after-ideal-spring-breeding-conditions/story-fngr8h0p-1227081029413?nk=53ca66e07c17d5d1a63ba38de133b66a