Bee buzz as trial hives come to City of Bayswater

Beekeeper Dean Wood tending to hives at Mt Lawley Golf Course.
Picture: Andrew Ritchie   d463775
Beekeeper Dean Wood tending to hives at Mt Lawley Golf Course. Picture: Andrew Ritchie d463775

BEES could be buzzing at Maylands peninsula soon as part of a new plan to trial hives across the City of Bayswater.

Working with the WA Apiarists’ Society, the City of Bayswater will use various locations and approaches to trial hives on public land.

Society member Dean Wood said he was not aware of any other Perth local governments having policies regarding individuals keeping bees on public land.

“I think it’s great; as a society we’ve been looking for places where our members can keep bees,” he said.

“Prior to this arising, I had identified a couple of sites on the Maylands peninsula that I was about to go and ask the City of Bayswater about – one on council-owned land and one on police land.”

Mr Wood said european honey bees pollinated about 30 per cent of food.

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“There are health benefits of honey. Honey has amazingly high antibacterial and antifungal properties as a food source,” he said.

Mr Wood has run 14 hives at the Mt Lawley Golf Club since September.

Mayor Barry McKenna said there had been a decline in the bee population worldwide.

“Urban beekeeping is not only beneficial to the future of bees but also helps support the pollination of community and residential gardens and protects future food production,” he said.

“The trial will enable us to address any potential safety concerns community members may have prior to the adoption of a formal guideline.

“When bees swarm they are most unlikely to sting, so despite their appearance people should not fear them, just treat them with respect.”

The proposal was put forward by Cr Michelle Sutherland and approved at a meeting held last month.