"HOW DID YOU
GET INTO BEES?"
One of the main questions we are asked when people meet us for the first time is “how did you get into bees?”. Well, one of us wanted bees, and the other, well, just got dragged along for the journey - and now leads our beekeeping endeavours (she’s ‘caught the bug’ as the saying goes!).
IN THE BEGINNING
David had wanted bees for many years and when he needed to buy a birthday gift one year for his father, he decided that a beehive to service the small orchard that Dad had established would be perfect. So, after doing his research, Dave brought back not one, but two hives. So we had Dave, Dad, two beehives (and Helen).
And here, our journey begins.
It wasn’t too long before it became obvious that Dad wasn’t too keen on taking responsibility for a colony of bees and learning all that would be needed. And coupled with Dad not always being at the farm, and David working a month-on month-off rotational roster out of Kazakhstan, left (you guessed it!) Helen as the primary beekeeper! However, David believes Helen should have seen this coming when she was registered as the beekeeper and was joined up to WAAS.
What started as two hives quickly become four. Then there’d be a call from Kazakhstan to home with a message that some queen cells had been sought and the hives needed to be split to accommodate them. Being the ‘official’ beekeeper (and the only one home) this task was left to Helen. It is here that our passion for bees developed into what it is now.
FAST FORWARD A FEW YEARS OR MORE...
David has now ‘retired’ from his professional career as an Environmental Manager for a multi National and is able to be down the farm with the family full time. This has enabled us to concentrate on what matters most. Family. The farm. And the bees.
NOT JUST ABOUT HONEY
Carlaminda Bees is a family enterprise. Each of us share roles, interests and passions within the business - this is particularly true when it comes to winter hive preparation and maintenance. Having three children certainly has its advantages when it’s time to make up boxes and frames in preparation for the new season!.
Not only are our children (Jessica, Emily and Alexander) involved in the laborious tasks of making and painting boxes, and gluing and waxing frames, they also enjoy being involved when inspecting the hives. They can often be seen all suited up, next to David and Helen, helping to inspect the hives.
While all three are involved in some way with the bees, Emily is the most passionate and is known as our ‘queen spotter’.