Beehives may soon be a feature of Council-managed greenspaces across the Northern Illawarra, as council works to support the bee population following the devastating NSW bushfire season.
Council, at its meeting on Monday 24 February, has agreed to explore opportunities to provide areas for bushfire-affected licensed apiarists and their bees.
The step follows a call from industry groups and amateur beekeeping associations for support to feed and care for bees and the honey industry in the wake of the fires, which destroyed hives and significant amounts of bushland.
“I have been told it could take between five and 20 years for some flowering gums to fully recover and produce enough nectar and pollen to feed bees,’’ says Wollongong City Lord Mayor Councillor Gordon Bradbery AM.
“With our many greenspaces and gardens across the city, we are in a position to be able to work with beekeeping experts and see how we can support this essential insect now and into the future.’’
The review of possible locations would take into consideration bee behaviour and how our community currently use the greenspace.
“Our staff will work the experts to find the best locations to place beehives,’’ Cr Bradbery said
“We need to ensure we’re not only offering apiarists a suitable location to set up a hive and support the feeding of bees and production of honey, but also any impact on how our community members already use and enjoy the site.’’
We will also write to other Government agencies and encourage them to follow Council’s example by using the greenspaces they manage to home beehives.