Hive management

Keeping honeybees is regulated in South Australia under the Livestock Act 1997 and the Livestock Regulations 2013. An important aspect of beekeeping is hive management, with six new mandatory requirements / variations coming into effect on 19 April 2018. Details are outlined in Information regarding new legislative requirements for beekeepers (PDF 128.9 KB) and include:

  1. A beekeeper must have read and understood the latest PIRSA information on identifying notifiable conditions associated with honeybees, with current information detailed in Condition of registration information on notifiable pests and diseases (PDF 105.3 KB) and Notifiable honeybee pests and diseases 2018 (PDF 859.6 KB).
  2. A registered beekeeper must ensure that any swarm catch box kept by the beekeeper other than at the beekeeper's usual place of residence is marked on the outside with the beekeeper's name and telephone number in characters that are at least 25 millimetres in height. This is a variation to previous regulations.
  3. Bees must be kept in a kind of hive approved by the Chief Inspector. This is a variation to previous regulations. Requirements are detailed in the Approval of kinds of hives for the keeping of honeybees (PDF 169.6 KB). Two of the variations include the requirements that:
    1. Hives must be manufactured and maintained so as to have bee-proof external surfaces, with honeybee access restricted to specifically designed and manufactured access points.
    2. Hives used for catching swarms must only contain frames of foundation.
  4. A beekeeper must ensure that water suitable to sustain bees is available within 200 metres of any hive. This is a new regulation.
  5. A beekeeper who keeps 50 or more hives must successfully complete a course in bee pest and disease management approved by the Chief Inspector. The course must be completed within the beekeeper's first period of registration after the commencement of this regulation. This is a new regulation, with approvals detailed in Approval of courses in pest and disease management to be undertaken by beekeepers (PDF 104.6 KB). Approved courses currently comprise of Plant Health Australia's Biosecurity for Beekeepers. Contact Teagan Alexander to get access to the course.
  6. Beekeepers must make a record of all specified biosecurity related management practices. Use the Approval of the manner and form of records to be kept by beekeepers (PDF 439.7 KB).
Page Last Reviewed: 19 Apr 2018
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