Mixed up weather may bring honey cut

AUSTRALIAN local honey supplies may be affected by bee shortages and dry weather.
AUSTRALIAN local honey supplies may be affected by bee shortages and dry weather. Toni Somes

AUSTRALIA may be looking at a 50% cut in local honey supplies because of bee shortages and dry weather.

Even in the Gympie region, where flowers are blooming and bees are busy, beekeeper and Valley Bees chairman Athol Craig (pictured) said "topsy-turvy weather" meant supplies were likely to be unreliable this year.

"Before the drought ended, beekeepers didn't quite know where to take their hives, because there was nothing flowering," Mr Craig said.

"That had weakened hives, which depend on variety of pollen for nutrition.

"In a drought there is no real ground flora. The strength of bee hives is dependent to a large extent on diversity of pollen and nectar.

"You need diversity of pollen to keep bees strong.

"Suddenly everything has flowered and the bees are very strong.

"The bees are predicting a mild winter, just looking at their behaviour.

"Even the trees are confused by a year in which rain did not come until the end of the wet season.

"All my citrus and stone fruit trees have flowered heavily," he said yesterday.

"They seem to think it's spring. The blue gums are in heavy bud and flowering about two months early."

He said honey supplies were insecure because many beekeepers would be wanting to leave honey in the hives, in case conditions changed for the worse.

Uncertainty after the production problems of the recent dry weather would lead to a compounding effect as bee keepers conserved what honey they had, in case the hives needed it to survive, Mr Craig said.

Topics:  bees honey weather

Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Have you seen the car connected to a Laidley robbery?

Police are appealing for information on a break and enter of the QN Hotel in Laidley.

If you know anything contact police or Crime Stoppers.

What's in it for us?

COMMUNITY'S VOICE: ATRC's Lockyer Valley Community Consultative Committee.

Lockyer Valley committee sceptical of Inland Rail

Sheep dairy is top class

GOOD STUFF: Awassi Queensland has been recognised for its sheep milk products for a second year running.

Lockyer sheep dairy recognised by country's best chefs

Local Partners