The lat­est buzz in farm­ing

Bee­keeper high­lights ben­e­fits at agri­cul­ture con­fer­ence

Advertiser (Grand Falls) - - FRONT PAGE - BY NICK O’DEA TC ME­DIA

When most peo­ple think of farm­ing, they prob­a­bly think of the rou­tine things —poul­try, eggs, beef, veg­eta­bles and fruit.

Most would prob­a­bly never think of bees.

Trevor Tuck of Tucks’ Bee Bet­ter Farm in Grand Falls-Wind­sor hopes to change that think­ing.

Ac­cord­ing to Tuck, there are cur­rently about of 300 honey­bee hives across the prov­ince.

He says this prov­ince has an ad­van­tage for bee­keeper be­cause it’s an is­land.

“New­found­land is a very re­mote spot com­pared to many other places in North Amer­ica and around the world,” he said. “. . . be­cause it is an is­land we are pure of many dis­eases that are com­mon in the bee­keep­ing in­dus­try.”

Tuck said there are strict reg­u­la­tions re­gard­ing the trans­port of bees in New­found­land and it has helped keep par­a­sites and con­ta­gious dis­eases out of the this sys­tem.

Tuck said there is a grow­ing need for bee­keep­ers in New­found­land, not just for pro­duc­tion of honey, but to help farm­ers who are grow­ing oth­ers things.

“The in­vest­ment in the berry in­dus­try is huge as well. In or­der to have a suc­cess­ful berry sea­son you need to pol­li­nate,” he said. “There is a grow­ing de­mand for pol­li­na­tion ser­vices. There is also the honey in­dus­try.”

Tuck said the ever-grow­ing berry in­dus­try in the prov­ince has a large de­mand for the pol­li­na­tors and it’s an­other way to make money in the in­dus­try.”

“It’s not al­ways about honey,” he joked.

Tuck said there are var­i­ous ben­e­fits to hav­ing bee farms and while he un­der­stands many peo­ple are afraid of the in­sect, he would en­cour­age them to con­sider the ben­e­fits of bees.

“Bees do a lot of good to the en­vi­ron­ment; with the col­lapse of so many colonies around the world, all the deaths due to pes­ti­cides and other fac­tors, we lose a lot of the world’s pol­li­na­tors and with that we may lose a lot of plant life,” he said. “The en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact bees can have on an area is re­mark­able.

“If peo­ple got over their ini­tial fear and learned more about their ( bees) be­hav­ior they would re­al­ize they are needed.”

Trevor Tuck, owner of Bee Bet­ter Farm in Grand Falls-Wind­sor, says there is a need for more bee hives and bee keep­ers, not just for honey pro­duc­tion but to en­sure pol­li­na­tion to help plants and crops.

From his bee farm near Grand Falls-Wind­sor, Tuck pro­duces honey for lo­cal mar­kets.

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