Honey Bee Hive Sites

The Australian honey bee industry relies on access to flora growing on public and private lands. Beekeepers hold a mixture of apiary sites and move hives based on nectar flow and availability. To date, there has been no concerted effort to capture the institutional knowledge of beekeepers and agencies concerning the foraging grounds, quality of nectar flows and resulting yield, and site migration patterns. The hive site program will provide more quality hive sites, protect existing sites and inform bee hive movement. Australian Manuka honey will be developed and protected.

The CRC is recruiting post graduates to work within four key programs.  If you are a PhD student and wish to learn more about Bee Hive Site project work click here.

  • Present bee hive site movement and productivity information, complemented by the identification of bee flora (citizen science), is mapped
  • Social, political and ecological barriers to current, and future, hive sites accessibility are identified (license to operate)
  • Perceived ecological barriers to hives sites are tested and quantified
  • Bee hive migration models, incorporating current and future barriers to hive site accessibility are developed and tested as a decision support tool for beekeepers
  • Institutional knowledge of bee hive site historic value is collated and assessed
  • Seasonal flora map with honey bee product quality from biogeographical regions is collated to inform the development of the bee hive site
  • Valuation model is updated with new information and validated
  • Regional year round bee hive site establishment models using flora mapping data and valuation are developed
  • Year-round hive sites are demonstrated and validated through honey bee product measurement and assessment
  • High value honey bee hive sites (Leptospermum) are demonstrated and validated through honey bee product measurement and assessment
  • Genetic diversity of the Leptospermum genus is mapped with detailed commercial species genomic maps developed for breeding program structure and to support PBR
  • Environmental triggers for floral onset identified, controlled interspecific crossing undertaken and accelerated breeding systems trialled for elite Leptospermum production
  • Nectar flow from Leptospermum species, as impacted by biological determinants and environmental conditions, is qualified
  • New Leptospermum selections are tested for land rehabilitation, flowering and bee-attraction performance


Objective: Design and develop a Spatiotemporal Geographic Information System database to house and link spatial information gathered across the CRCHBP projects and related sites; and developed an enhanced bee related floristic vegetation map fo the SW of WA

Project Leader:  Dr Bryan Bouruff

Post Docorates:  Dr Manita Narongsirikul and Dr Alex Chapman


Objective: Identify a planting strategy to enable valuable monofloral bioactive Leptospermum honey production while minimizing the impact of hive health.

Project Leader: Katja Hogendoorn


Objective: Provide information to guide and produce Leptospermum selections and the breading program and minimise environmental risks.

Project Leader: Dr Margaret Byrne

Post Doctorate: Dr Rachel Binks

Objective: Develop a bioacive Leptospermum breeding program for South Australia

Project Leader: Dr Kate Delaporte


Objective:  Identify and quantify honey bee flora activity for nectar and pollen.

Project Leader: Dr James HeHe