Sco­res of bee­hi­ves sa­ved from the fi­res

Knysna-Plett Herald - - News - Ya­seen Gaf­far

Mo­re than 40 bee­hi­ves al­ong the Gar­den Rou­te ha­ve been res­cu­ed and re­lo­ca­ted o­ver the last week as a re­sult of the fi­res, ac­cor­ding to the Gift of the Gi­vers’ dri­ven i­ni­ti­a­ti­ve, Ho­pe for the Ho­ney­bees.

T­hey we­re es­ta­blis­hed fol­lo­wing last y­e­ar’s fi­res and con­sist of ex­pe­rien­ced and pro­fes­si­o­nal bee­kee­pers tas­ked with sa­ving the Ca­pe ho­ney­bee po­pu­la­ti­on, said O­wen Wil­li­ams, one of the vo­lun­teers wor­king un­der Ho­pe for the Ho­ney­bees.

He ex­plai­ned that hund­reds of hi­ves al­ong the Gar­den Rou­te ha­ve been “left be­hind” as the fi­res burnt o­ver the past week, which in­clu­des hi­ves on pri­va­te pro­per­ties w­he­re t­hey are hard to re­ach.

“We go in­to t­he­se a­re­as, lo­ca­te hi­ves, and mo­ve them to a sa­fe a­rea. W­hen their na­tu­ral en­vi­ron­ment is bur­ning, t­he­se bees can be e­a­si­ly e­ra­di­ca­ted and the ge­ne pool of the Ca­pe ho­ney­bees is di­mi­nis­hed. It is cri­ti­cal for bee­kee­pers to look af­ter t­he­se hi­ves,” said Wil­li­ams, ad­ding that the Ca­pe ho­ney­bee is u­ni­que to t­his a­rea.

“The bees are re­lo­ca­ted and fed a nec­tar and pol­len sub­sti­tu­te so that t­hey can re­po­pu­la­te and speed up the flo­ral and bo­ta­ni­cal re­co­ve­ry through pol­li­na­ti­on.

Wil­li­ams said that t­hey’ve co­ve­r­ed a­re­as in­clu­ding Ge­or­ge Bo­ta­ni­cal Gar­den, Se­ven Pas­ses and Bib­by’s Hoek in R­hee­nen­dal in the past week al­o­ne.

“We of­fer t­his help un­con­di­ti­o­nal­ly, it’s for the bees. That has been the vi­si­on of Gift of the Gi­vers,” said Wil­li­ams, ad­ding that last y­e­ar’s fi­res had pre­pa­red them to car­ry out an ef­fi­cient ser­vi­ce at ti­mes of e­mer­gen­cy.

“The­re are so ma­ny pe­op­le with bee­hi­ves who mig­ht not be re­gis­te­red or keep it un­der the ra­dar. But out as­sis­tan­ce is un­con­di­ti­o­nal and the p­ri­ma­ry go­al is the pro­tecti­on of the Ca­pe ho­ney­bee.”

Find out mo­re

Mo­re in­for­ma­ti­on on Ho­pe for the Ho­ney­bees can be found on their Fa­ce­book pa­ge, or con­tact O­wen Wil­li­ams on 078 724 6425.

P­ho­to: Sup­p­lied

A res­cu­ed bee­hi­ve is a­buzz with acti­vi­ty upon re­lo­ca­ti­on to R­hee­nen­dal.

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