Chestermere: Western Canada’s first Bee City
Only the second City designated in Canada, Chestermere is helping in the fight to save the declining population of bees.
Bees and other pollinators are struggling across Canada and around the world. It is estimated that 85% of flowering plants (including fruits and vegetables) depend on pollinators so a decline in their numbers could devastate food production.
The designation highlights Chestermere’s current efforts to promote healthy ecosystems such as the Community Garden, Chestermere in Bloom, the Birth Forest, as well as more than 70 parks and green spaces around the community.
Going forward, the Bee City committee will implement pollinator friendly community initiatives and awareness opportunities. Residents are encouraged to stay tuned for programming, events and activities to learn more about how they can support pollinator populations.
In March 2016, Dr. Preston Pouteaux, a local beekeeper and advocate approached Chestermere officials about becoming an official Bee City.
City staff set up a Bee City committee comprised of local community members and City staff. With the approval of City Council, they brought an application to Bee City Canada and were officially designated as a Bee City on July 27, 2016.
In the news:
- Chestermere becomes Western Canada's first Bee City – CBC News
- Welcome to Chestermere: the most bee-friendly city in Western Canada – Calgary Herald
The following information has been provided by the Chestermere Honey Bee Society.
Bumble Bees: We love these gentle fuzzy bees. They focus on pollinating flowers and live in very small families. We advise leaving them alone, they likely won't be back next year, so enjoy them.
Wasps: They build nests in our yards and scavenge, and they like to sting. They are pests and will hurt beneficial bugs. We advise that you get rid of them.
Honey Bees: We really love them. They are valuable pollinators. When they swarm, they are just looking for a new home, so let's give them a hand.
Have questions or need assistance? Contact local beekeeper Preston at (403) 880-6486.