The Buzz About Native Bees

This class has passed
This class has passed

What’s it all about?

People are becoming increasingly aware of the important role honey bees play in our environment and society. But what about all the other bee species? Australia is home to over 1,500 species of native bees and has the highest diversity of bee species in the world.

These bees play a vital part in local ecosystems, but are under dire threat from pesticides, habitat loss, urban sprawl and increasing urbanisation. Fortunately native bees can be encouraged into any garden through the construction of bee “hotel” habitats and planting indigenous plants as a food source. In addition to helping local biodiversity, your own plants and food crops will benefit greatly from the presence of native bees.

What will we cover?

The class will cover:

  • What are bees?
  • The importance of bees and why they are threatened
  • Why we should help native bees and the benefits of doing so
  • Why you should build a native bee hotel
  • Details and a demonstration on how exactly to build the two kinds of native bee “hotels”; drilled hardwood and bamboo bundle
  • How to attract native bees into your garden using indigenous plants
  • The role indigenous plants play in local ecosystems

Who will be teaching?

Pat HonanPatrick Honan is a recent graduate of Urban Horticulture at Melbourne University, Burnley, and has run workshops around construction of native bee hotels for St Kilda Indigenous Nursery Coop, as well as working with other community groups around communication and the environment. He has studied journalism, and has working experience with communication. Patrick is interested in sustainability, conservation and the environment and how to get people to adapt those ideas to the urban context through effective communication. You can find out more on his website.

Joining Patrick will be David Sparks. David studied Ecology and Botany at the University of Queensland. He has had 6 years experience in ecological restoration and environmental education, and has worked at St. Kilda Indigenous Nursery Coop for over a year. He is currently studying a Graduate Diploma in adult education at RMIT.