The British High Commission [in collaboration with Bees for development Ghana] has organised a 2-day beekeeping training workshop for six of its grounds workers.
This training workshop marks the beginning of a collaborative project by British High Commission and Bees for development Ghana called ‘Accra City Bees Project’.
According to Bees for Development, there are abundant beekeeping resources made up of ornamental trees and other flowering natural vegetation of the landscapes of Accra City that remain untapped.
“Appropriate and sustainable beekeeping systems can be developed in the city to turn the nectar, pollen and other resources used by bees into viable production of honey, beeswax and other products. These will benefit people in the beekeeping value chain, the environment and nature in general”, said the Director of Bees for development Ghana (BfdG), Dr Kwame Aidoo.
According to BfdG, the population of honey bees in the city is declining as a result of many factors including the following:
- The general negative perception that honey bees are deadly and can kill people so must be destroyed in the city.
- Reduced cavities used as nesting sites for bees in the city.
- Destruction of swarms of bees by pest control agents because they are considered as treats to people
- Destruction of established nests in the roofs of buildings because bees are wrongly considered aggressive to people.
“The importance of bees and beekeeping is not known to many people. Their critical role of pollination of cultivated plants improves yields for farmers. Wild plants in the forests are pollinated to produce fruits and seeds that feed animals to conserve biodiversity hence maintaining and improving ecosystems. The forest is also regenerated and sustained through this important ecosystem service of pollination. Bees again collect nectar, a great natural wealth otherwise unused by man, and turn it into honey. Propolis, pollen, beeswax, etc could also be harvested from bees for sale”, Dr Aidoo added.
Bees for Development Ghana is therefore pleased to collaborate with the British High Commission Accra to develop this project that aims at achieving the following objectives:
- To conserve the bee populations in Accra. Suitable nesting sites and apiaries will be established at places that avoid conflicts between bees and people.
- To develop vibrant city beekeeping systems to offer profitable production opportunities to interested operators. Honey, beeswax and other bee products will be produced in the city for sale.
- To establish a vibrant group of beekeepers who will be empowered with knowledge, skills and logistics to rescue, protect and relocate stressed bee colonies and swarms in the city. These colonies could be used in restocking degraded agricultural landscapes that are also declining in be populations as a result of inappropriate pesticide use. Established forest and natural reserves outside the city and in other regions of Ghana can be restocked with rescued bee colonies.
In order to achieve the objectives above, Bees for development Ghana birthed the project, ACCRA CITY BEES.
The project makes use of suitable compound or ground facilities of the British High Commission in Accra to serve as the centre core of its activities.
As part of this wonderful project, the British High Commission in Accra and Bees for development Ghana organised a two-day beekeeping workshop for some selected grounds workers in Accra , Ghana.
The participant for the workshop were selected based on their interest to form a team which will spearhead the Accra City Bees Project.
The Director of Bees for development Ghana, who doubles as the facilitator for the workshop, indicated he had very good interactions with the trainees who told him interesting stories of encounters with bees during their work – taking care of trees and other ornamental plants on the facilities of the Commission.
The participants promised to dedicate themselves to working hard to save numerous bee colonies in the city which often times got killed by pest control people.
This is a modest start of Accra City Bees Project that has the potential to expand to bring in other potential beekeepers in Accra.
The trainees expressed high interest and will also work to establish their own colonies near their homes and farms in the near future.