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May the 4th bee with you

Bees in the VPD community garden
The buzzing new recruits at the VPD headquarters, right after they were moved into the garden. Photo courtesy VPD website.

Yesterday morning, bee-keepers from Hives for Humanity returned to VPD headquarters, and brought with them 30,000 bees that were placed in their new temporary home in the 3rd floor community garden.

The hives and community garden are funded and maintained by volunteers from the Vancouver Police Department’s civilian and sworn staff, in conjunction with Hives for Humanity’s trained bee-keepers.

Hives for Humanity has grown from just one hive in September of 2012 to over 150 hives spread throughout Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and Mount Pleasant communities.

Hives for Humanity is a non-profit organization that encourages community connections through apiculture, more commonly known as bee-keeping.


Why are the police keeping bees?

The world population of honeybees is currently on the decline due to a variety of reasons. Bees and other wild pollinators have a crucial role to play in the pollination of plants and crops. Up to an estimated 80% of global agricultural pollination services are attributed to the domesticated honeybee.

How far will a honeybee travel to gather nectar?

Honeybees will usually travel up to three kilometres to locate a food source and gather pollen. The honeybees at VPD headquarters will pollinate plants from approximately Vine Street to Commercial Drive and Coal Harbour to 37th Avenue.

What are we going to do with all that honey?

Each hive produces its own unique honey flavour, based on available food sources. Honey from the VPD headquarter hives will be processed by Hives for Humanity and all proceeds from its sale will go to support innovative programming that builds inclusive communities through the culture of the beehive.



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