News & Events

  • Roosting rainbow bee-eaters needed to find Asian honey bees in Townsville

    July 18, 2017 – 3:22 pm

    The National Varroa Mite Eradication Program (NVMEP) is seeking public assistance to locate roosts of rainbow bee-eaters in the Townsville area. The program uses a variety of surveillance methods to detect Asian honey bees, one of which relies on the rainbow bee-eater birds, which occur throughout Townsville. As all beekeepers know, bee-eaters love to eat […] Read more

  • Pollination technique could significantly boost macadamia yield

    July 5, 2017 – 11:45 am

    Improving macadamia tree yields by more than 50 per cent could be achieved by alternating varieties in rows and increasing pollinators, new research suggests. For the study – funded by Hort Innovation and Plant & Food Research and the Australian Macadamia Society (AMS) – researchers conducted a trial in a Bundaberg orchard which investigated pollination […] Read more

  • New Biosecurity Officer protects NSW bee industry

    May 25, 2017 – 11:58 am

    The NSW bee industry will be further protected to minimise the impact of pests and diseases with the appointment of a new Bee Biosecurity Officer based at the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Tocal College at Paterson. DPI’s Manager of Plant Biosecurity Prevention and Preparedness, Dr Chris Anderson said the new appointment of Rod Bourke […] Read more

  • New guide to assist beekeepers harvest and extract honey

    May 24, 2017 – 11:36 am

    Beekeepers can get practical information on harvesting and extracting honey with a new publication, produced by NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) Tocal College, launched at the NSW Apiarists’ Association Conference. DPI Technical Specialist Honey Bees and co-author Dr Doug Somerville said the guide, Honey Harvesting and Extracting, informs beekeepers of the best management practices […] Read more

  • Redoubling Australia’s bee protection efforts

    May 19, 2017 – 3:15 pm

    The nation’s busiest pollinators have received a boost after the official launch a multi-faceted effort to maintain the health of Australia’s bees along with the country’s $1.8 billion pollination-reliant horticulture and grain industries. Horticulture Innovation Australia, the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council and Grain Producers Australia have joined forces to deliver a $3M program that […] Read more

  • Opening a hive

    Online training brings beekeepers up to standard

    April 28, 2017 – 9:43 am

    A new online training course was launched by the Australian Honey Bee Industry Council (AHBIC) and Plant Health Australia this week, to make it easy for beekeepers to find out how to care for honey bees in accordance with the new Australian Honey Bee Industry Biosecurity Code of Practice. The Biosecurity for Beekeepers course explains […] Read more

  • Large African hive beetle now high priority pest

    March 23, 2017 – 3:38 pm

    In the wake of the first ever Australian review of the risk posed to the country’s pollination and agricultural industries by large African hive beetle (LAHB), the pest is now endorsed as a High Priority Pest by all state, territory and federal governments. As part of a research project funded by the Honey Bee and […] Read more

  • Medical grade Australian honey

    March 10, 2017 – 1:37 pm

    The world has a new source of antibacterial honey,with research confirming that Australian honey from the same species as New Zealand’s well-known manuka honey has similar medicinal properties. This is a potential boon for the Australian industry, as medical-grade honey sourced from New Zealand earns an estimated $75 million a year. Praised for its antibacterial […] Read more

  • Varroa mite eradication update

    February 10, 2017 – 1:52 pm

    Bees on the move With the recent rainfall in North Queensland, there has been a notable increase in bee activity and swarms. The National Varroa Mite Eradication Progam is calling on beekeepers and members of the public in the Townsville area  to report new bee swarms and feral nests so that they can be examined […] Read more

  • Varroa mite prevention and control program in Townsville

    January 19, 2017 – 9:23 am

    Biosecurity Queensland is conducting surveillance and control activities to detect and destroy Asian honey bees and eradicate varroa mites. To stop the spread of varroa mites, a Prevention and Control Program is now in place for the Townsville City Council local government area. The Prevention and Control Program imposes obligations on an occupier of a […] Read more

  • Beekeepers and farmers encouraged to use technology to communicate this season

    December 21, 2016 – 10:01 am

    The Australian Honey Bee Industry Council (AHBIC) and Cotton Australia are calling on all farmers and beekeepers to use online tools to better communicate with each other to protect bees and crops. Cotton Australia CEO, Adam Kay, says the BeeConnected app facilitates communication between farmers and beekeepers as a tool to ensure crop protection is […] Read more

  • How pollination will change if Varroa destructor mite hits Australia

    December 20, 2016 – 3:21 pm

    Currently Australia has a high concentration of feral honey bee colonies – that is unmanaged hives in the wild—and these helpful insects pollinate many crops. But as overseas experience has shown, if there should be an incursion of the honey bee parasite Varroa destructor in Australia, this invader would kill off unmanaged hives, with the […] Read more

  • Varroa mite eradication team in it for the long haul

    December 2, 2016 – 8:48 am

    The campaign to rid Townsville of varroa mites is now being funded nationally, with a dedicated locally-based varroa mite eradication team being established in Townsville. Minister for Agriculture and Fisheries and Minister for Rural Economic Development Bill Byrne said the establishment of the National Varroa Mite Eradication Program would ensure a continuing long-term effort to […] Read more

  • Bee biosecurity code of practice

    October 12, 2016 – 1:24 pm

    The secret to being a good beekeeper Currently Australia is free of many serious honey bee pests that damage the health of European honey bees overseas. According to Alison Saunders, National Manager for Horticultural Cropping at Plant Health Australia, exotic pests such as varroa, tropilaelaps or tracheal mites are a constant threat. “As bad as […] Read more

  • Response team make a bee-line to Asian honey bee nest

    September 12, 2016 – 12:00 pm

    Another Asian honey bee nest has been found in the Hyde Park area of Townsville, but there were no varroa mites on the bees or in the nest. Biosecurity Queensland Varroa Mite Response Coordinator Dr Ashley Bunce said this latest nest was located in the eaves of a house that backed on to the property […] Read more

  • Asian honey bees found in wine barrel

    August 16, 2016 – 1:45 pm

    A wine barrel used as a table on a Hyde Park family’s verandah has been revealed as the latest home for Asian honey bees in Townsville. Biosecurity Queensland officers working on the Varroa mite eradication response were alerted by the home owner last week, after she noticed bees entering a small hole at the side […] Read more

  • More Asian honey bees detected in Townsville

    August 9, 2016 – 11:13 am

    Biosecurity Queensland has not found any varroa mites on a new swarm of Asian honey bees which were collected at Hyde Park on Friday. Dr Ashley Bunce, Director, Varroa Mite Response said this detection came about thanks to a call from a member of the public. “It’s great that the Townsville community is being so […] Read more

  • Bee hunters take to streets

    July 28, 2016 – 12:47 pm

    A small army of bee hunters has taken to the streets of Townsville searching for any signs of Asian honey bees, the hosts of the parasitic varroa mite. Varroa Mite Response director Ashley Bunce said Biosecurity Queensland was leading the eradication effort with support from industry following the discovery of varroa mites in a nest […] Read more

  • Varroa mites found in Annandale Asian honey bee hive

    July 20, 2016 – 2:06 pm

    Laboratory examinations of an Asian honey bee hive found at Annandale this week have confirmed the presence of varroa mites. Biosecurity Queensland’s Dr Ashley Bunce, Director, Varroa Mite Response, said initial examinations found no mites on the bees, but a single mite had today been identified within the comb taken from the hive. “The hive […] Read more

  • Putting pollination front and centre

    July 14, 2016 – 12:50 pm

    In an effort to ensure Australians can enjoy local fruit, nuts and vegetables for years to come, Horticulture Innovation Australia (Hort Innovation) has launched a significant pollination research investment fund. This likely multi-million dollar fund will invest in vital research to increase crop quality and yields through more effective pollination and alternate pollinators. Increasing the […] Read more