Fed Square’s rooftop has been transformed into a village of busy bees. Fed Square and Melbourne City Rooftop Honey have teamed up to help give wings to the “Angels’ of Agriculture” – 65% of all the food that we eat is dependent on honey-bee pollination.
There are 40 rooftop bee villages already in operation in Melbourne CBD and inner-city suburbs. Urban bee-keeping is a very safe practice – honeybees are not interested in humans and their flight paths rarely cross human traffic. Pollen and nectar is what they want – so you don’t need to be afraid of stings in the Square.
Fed Square bee village is one of the biggest rooftop apiaries in Melbourne! It is estimated that 350 kilograms of honey will be produced each year. The honey will be extracted from the hives raw and unprocessed and will then be used by the restaurants and cafes in the Square. If you’re a sweet tooth – make sure you dine in Fed Square, the first harvest took place in January this year.
Meet Fed Square’s resident beekeepers
Vanessa and Mat of Melbourne City Rooftop Honey are Fed Square’s resident bee keepers.
Vanessa and Mat are passionate about bringing bees back to our cities! Concerned by a growing sense of disconnection between food production and consumption and inspired by hundred year old practices in Europe, Vanessa and Mat have created something uniquely Melbourne with Melbourne City Rooftop Honey. They have now been apiarists for four years and collectively they have helped raise awareness of the plight of Australian honeybees.
Why are honey bees important?
Bees are vital for food security and the diversity of the planet’s food culture – 65% of all the food that we eat is dependent on honey-bee pollination.
Australia is the last “Honeybee Eden” in the world and is the only terrain where Varroa Mite has not wiped out huge populations of honeybees. Varroa Mite is a serious issue in the US, where only 50% of the honeybee population survives.
Watch the TED Talk: Every city needs healthy honey bees »
Did you know?
- A typical beehive houses from 15,000 and 50,000 bees
- The life span of a worker honey bee is only 4 to 6 weeks during the summer, and as many months in
- All the bees in the hive are female except the drones, the male bee which make up only about 0.25% of the hive population
- There is only one reproductive female in each hive -the queen
- The queen bee can live up to 3 or 4 years, but only mates at the beginning of her life, however she mates with 12 – 20 drones and stores the sperm for continued use
- A honey bee can fly about 40km/h
- 30g of honey would fuel honey bee flight nearly around the world.
- During hot days the bees bring in drops of water and fan them to cool and humidify the hive