Finally after several months of planning for a visit to the Quoin Island Turtle Rehab Centre for our group, it finally happened. Unfortunately because it was held on a week day, some of our members were unable to attend but for those that did, we enjoyed a great day. We joined a group of CQ University Citizen Science students for the day and it turned out to be a very interesting day for them and for our members.
Because it was held on Remembrance Day, we started with observing a minutes silence to remember commitment of those that served or are currently serving.
Then our first activity after a short presentation on Native Stingless Bees was as a group conduct a hive spilt for Kim’s 6 year old hive. Kim was most insistent that we don’t cause damage to her very healthy bee population in the process as she loves her bees almost as much as she loves her turtles so the pressure was on from the outset. She need not have worried however as once we opened it up we were blessed with what turned out to be the perfect split and even the bees were not aggressive. The students and adults were most attentive and showed very keen interest with lots of questions. Their bonus was a tasting of very nice honey on our special Beeeemembrance Day.
After the bee activity, the student group then had a tour of the turtle rehab Centre whilst we cleaned up and enjoyed lunch beside the pool. After lunch Kim then provided our members with a personal guided tour of the rehab centre and met a turtle named Ian, a turtle which I had personally rescued the previous day and was now in the professional care of the facility.
With lunch and turtles out of the way it was time for another activity, a beach cleanup where the students and our members removed marine debris from what was a very tidy beach. The data from this cleanup was then entered into the Australia Marine Debris Initiative Database (AMDI)
As a special surprise for everyone before we had the catch the ferry back to Gladstone, Kim and the staff had organized for the release of a rehabilitated turtle right on the beach we had just cleaned up.
We must acknowledge the support of the Quoin Island Turtle Rehab Centre for the use of their facility and CQ University for inviting us to join them to enable us to share our experience with native bees.
With the year almost at an end and lots of other commitments, particularly for Chairman Mark and myself, Mark decided to call our AGM on Sat 20th November at the Tondoon Botanic Gardens. At the meeting we re-elected our committee and then had some good general discussion about our direction going forward in 2022 with some exciting suggestions.
Gladstone Regional Council have been in touch again in relation to rescue of hives from water meter boxes so we are now waiting with keen anticipation and hopefully we will have some more hives to share between our members and community groups. Our plan is to once the hives have been rescued and rehabilitated successfully, to then get them out into the commu-nity through various school groups interested in them.
For more info on branch activities, visit our Facebook page ANBA Gladstone Branch, https://www.facebook.com/groups/480678232538075