WESTERN Australian beekeepers have been reminded the importation of any bees or used beekeeping equipment from interstate is prohibited.
WAFarmers has issued a warning to WA apiarists saying the importation of bees or used equipment could be a biosecurity threat to the WA bee population.
WAFarmers beekeeping section president, Leilani Leyland, said queen bees or bee hives containing bees and used bee equipment cannot be brought into Western Australia under any circumstances.
“Bee products including honey, wax, pollen and royal jelly can be bought into WA but only under strict quarantine conditions,” Mrs Leyland said.
“Western Australia has strict processes in place which not only monitor the transference of queen bees, but also protect our enviable position as a state with a clean and green image.
“Diseases including the highly infectious European Foulbrood are currently present in the eastern states which, if transferred to WA, could have the potential to decimate the state’s bee population.
“While we understand that the waiting times for Queen bee lists can often be lengthy, this is a critically important process as diseases can be carried on Queen bees, and we do not want to threaten our position by something as trivial as impatience or ignorance.”
Mrs Leyland said buyers should be wary of sellers from both inter-state and international locations that do not have restrictions advertised.
“Merchandise that is imported risks confiscation, the imposition of a costly fine and even prosecution under Biosecurity and Agriculture Management Act 2007,” she said.
“If you notice this type of behaviour, advise a Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development Apiary Officer or a member of the Bees Industry Council of WA immediately.”