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Aussie Bee Bulletin
Rare photos and intriguing facts on the secret lives of Australian Native Bees.

Issue 13 (March 2000)


Wasp-Mimic Bee
(Hyleoides concinna)

Please See Our Update
on the Bumble Bee
Importation Proposal


THE GREAT PRETENDER (HYLEOIDES CONCINNA): THE BEE THAT MIMICS WASPS -- From the moment of its discovery during Captain Cook's voyage to Australia in 1770, this spectacular bee has baffled many. Unravel the mysteries of the Great Pretender!

STINGLESS BEEKEEPING SURVEY 2000 -- Survey forms continue to pour in from around Australia. But it is not too late to join in.

NATIVE BEE FIELD GUIDE -- Great progress is being made on our ambitious new book: a field guide to the native bees of the Sydney region. We are asking our volunteers - both scientific and lay - to look over the first draft and to assist with the fun task of suggesting common names for bees.

PROPOSED BUMBLE BEE IMPORT CREATES FIERCE DEBATE -- In November 1999 a National Bumble Bee Workshop was held at the Tasmanian Museum, Hobart. This was the start of a three year project to investigate the pros and cons of using European bumble bees for pollination of horticultural crops in Australia. We look at this very controversial issue. (For more information, click here.)

THE NEST OF THE BUMBLE BEE -- Bumble bee specialist, Dr Brian Faulkner, gives us the inside story on the nest and the stings(!) of the bumble bee.

KEEP WATCH FOR QUEENSLAND'S BUMBLE BEE INTRUDER! -- In Issue 11 of Aussie Bee we reported on the discovery of a North American species of bumble bee discovered at Buderim during the summer of 1998-99. The Department of Primary Industries (Qld) is asking people to report any sightings of this unwanted intruder.

MEG'S STORY: A NEST RESCUE WITH FLAIR -- Meg's first solo rescue of a stingless bee nest using improvised bee-getting tools was a great success! Meg and Peter Davenport are amongst the most experienced bee keepers in Australia. Meg shares some valuable tips on how to care for a newly boxed hive.

BECOME A BEE TRACKER - PART 1 -- How is it possible to track a particular bee from a stingless bee hive throughout its lifetime when there are thousands of bees in a nest?

CHOOSY BEES MAKE PRIME POLLINATORS -- How does a Trigona stingless worker in a garden full of flowers decide where to collect her next load of pollen? Daniel White has found that Trigona carbonaria (recently renamed Tetragonula carbonaria) bees are very selective; so they are efficient pollinators of crops and wildflowers.

STINGLESS BEES POLLINATE GREENHOUSE CAPSICUMS -- Pablo Occhiuzzi shows that Trigona (recently renamed Tetragonula) stingless bees can successfully pollinate a capsicum crop.

AUSSIE BEE MEETS GST -- We are lowering our subscription prices and introducing a new, free update service by email.

ON NATIVE BEE SAFARI - QUEST FOR GOLD IN THE GULF COUNTRY -- Croydon, a small town near the Gulf of Carpentaria, had a flourishing past during the goldrush, but it still has hidden treasure if you know where to look!

THE FIRST-EVER BOOK ON AUSTRALIAN NATIVE BEES PUBLISHED IN 1775 -- Cloistered in the archives of the Australian Museum is a rare and fragile book: the first book ever published on Australia's native bees. These discoloured pages, now 225 years old, record scientific descriptions of native bees collected during James Cook's 1770 voyage to Australia.

SAVED - JUST IN A NICK OF TIME -- Hundreds of nests of native stingless bees are burnt each year when land is cleared for development. Mark Grosskopf tells the story of four thriving nests he rescued from a situation like this, just in the nick of time!


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