Australia has over 1500 species of native bees that support our unique ecosystems.
But this is under threat.
Swarms are declining, impacted by chemical use in farming operations and general ill swarm health.
Walgett Men’s Shed and MPREC are hoping to change all this - and support the community at the same time - though the Walgett Honey Bee Havens.
The initiative aims to not only to create a more productive bee population and raise awareness of native bees and the role they play in our environment, but also provide opportunities to strengthen the local community.
Walgett residents will be provided with a native bee haven/hive constructed by the Walgett Men’s Shed, together
with a Honey Bee Magnet attracts bees to increase pollination. MPREC will also explore the opportunity to formalise the construction of the Honey Bee Havens into recognised training.
This project is funded by the Office of Environment and Heritage’s Our Place Program. The Our Place Program encourages local groups to engage their communities in environmental issues relevant in their local area.
MPREC worked with over 14 partner organisations to develop and secure funding for over 7 projects, include the Walgett Honey Bee Havens.
MPREC Acting CEO Rene Wykes said, “Each project will add environmental, employment and community benefits to the region.”
“The Walgett Honey Bee Haven project is particularly fascinating. Not many people are aware that native bees are non-aggressive and virtually stingless, or that they are mostly solitary - and yet they are so vitally important to our entire ecosystem.”
“It’s great to not only be able to achieve environmental outcomes, but encourage social and employment outcomes as well. We’ll be investigating the potential of whether Walgett Honey Bee Havens could become viable business venture to engage local youth. As it is, the construction of the Honey Bee Havens aims to encourage the social inclusion of disengaged Aboriginal youth, and provide them with linkages to formal learning and recognition.”
“We are excited to see how it will encourage community inclusiveness and purpose, giving all residents a common goal and talking point.”