It seems the honey industry is getting its fair share of media attention lately.
Hive theft is always a newsworthy topic albeit a serious one. Those who do this should be dealt with suitably, (preferably with swift judgment by the hive occupants!) This crime is not always easy to prevent as hives are usually on unoccupied land and hard to secure.
We have also had several articles featuring swarms lately, these are often spectacular and in very visible places. Recently in a Pukekohe shopping centre and also near a day-care centre in Auckland. Swarms in urban areas are becoming more prevalent as more and more people take up the beekeeping hobby.
Then we have had beekeepers who park a truckload of hives in an urban area! This is very bad practice and NOT a good look for the industry. Recently in New Plymouth outside a hotel this occurred and involved the dramatic rescue of an infant from a car that was covered with escaping bees! What about the beekeeper who parked his truckload of hives outside the library in Westport and went off to eat his lunch preventing the literary minds of the town from entering. What these “beekeepers” were thinking would happen, I don’t know!
Bee stings also feature in the news – In Marlborough a truck driver was stung while driving and had a bad reaction requiring his partner to take the wheel and preventing a serious accident. With the NZ Army in the area having to help out as well, it proved to be quite a story.
All in all “Bee Aware Month” has done its job of raising the profile of our industry and bees are now the hot topic!