Unregistered hives prompt reminder to bee good

Beekeepers in South Australia are being reminded to register and brand their hives after a number of unregistered hives were discovered in the Lower South East.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said there were numerous beekeepers with unregistered hives, particularly in the Lower South East.

“It is concerning to hear there are South Australian beekeepers who aren’t doing the right thing to uphold the state’s strict biosecurity practices and are keeping unregistered hives,” said Minister Whetstone.

“Whether someone has one or two hives as a hobby or is a commercial beekeeper, all hives have to be registered and there’s no excuse for not doing so.

“The dry conditions have impacted on bee populations and honey production and it’s only through stringent biosecurity measures and monitoring of populations across the state that we can adequately protect this important industry.

“Under the Livestock Act 1997, hives must be registered and have displayed a 3-letter identification code.

“The annual registration fee for beekeepers with five or more hives is $42.75, plus an additional $1 per hive, which goes to the Apiary Industry Fund. For hobbyists, with four or fewer hives there is no registration fee.

“It’s also a legal requirement that bees are only kept in approved types of hives, are provided with sufficient, suitable water within 200 metres, and are regularly inspected for pests and diseases.

“Beekeepers must also keep records of all biosecurity-related management practices undertaken.

“As part of annual registration, all South Australian beekeepers should read and understand the latest information on their obligations, and of notifiable conditions which can impact bees.

“These measures are aimed at increasing productivity and enhancing pest and disease control so our honeybee industry and ever-growing pollination services to our horticulture industry stays healthy and flourishes well into the future.”

More information can be found at: www.pir.sa.gov.au/biosecurity/animal_health/bees

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