Cairns Branch – April 2024

Our March meeting began by acknowledging first time attendees and the effort other people had made to travel a
couple of hours for the meeting.

We discussed the results of our successful Council Grant which led to the acquisition of a northern Hocks hive from Nick Smith NQNativeBees which has been placed into a classic Doug Irvine box. To keep it secure we purchased a security cage from Alex Derrick at SpicersHollow Bees which is strong and functional while not taking anything
away from the beauty of the hive. A stylish park bench plus the hive on the stand have now been installed behind the tee box on the 6th hole of the Half Moon Bay GC Cairns. These items were installed as a joint venture between the golf club and the ANBA Cairns branch.
The Cairns Branch library was shown. These books can be borrowed by any ANBA financial member. Stewart gave a brief history of the T. carbonaria hive that was to be harvested of honey from the honey super. Under Wendy Forno’s expert guidance, Stewart removed the honey super from the hive. Using Michael Dunne’s beautifully craft honey extractor (bed of nails) he pierced the honey pots. It was interesting to note the complete lack of pollen pots. The super was removed and left to drain into a container. This gave attendees time to grab a cuppa and have a chat.

When the super was completely drained, the honey was poured via a strainer into jars. Approximately 650ml of spectacular bush honey was harvested. We then cleaned the bees in the strainer with water so that they could be revived and return to the hive…this was partially successful.

During this entire process there was much discussion about every step along the way. Everyone was able to taste some of this wonderful honey. Olly then showed us a recently failed T. hockingsi hive and we were able to taste some honey from the remaining pots and compare the honey of these two species. The afternoon was very successful with productive bee and garden discussion involving everyone. (Meeting minutes are on our Facebook Page) The following Tuesday Ocean Wemyss (Urban Native Bees Brisbane) flew into Cairns and was happy to spend a couple of hours over dinner and a drink, talking bees with a few of us.

If you are ever up this way, make yourself known to the committee via our Facebook page so that we can have a catch up.

From: Stewart Clarke, Chair and Representative to ANBA
Cairns branch Facebook group

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