Honeybees – nature’s artists – are part of KOAC’s pastoral atmosphere. Beehives are located in the Aspen and Balsam Poplar woodland next to wetland habitat and wildflower meadows and close to contemporary sculptures underlining the interaction of art and nature at KOAC. 

 

In partnership with expert beekeeper Amber Yano of MOB Honey, our goal is to introduce the benefits bees bring to all of us and the tour de force beehives are as living systems.

About Amber

MOB Honey Logo

Amber has spent many years perfecting the art of beekeeping, encouraging the preservation of natural habitats for ALL POLLINATORS.

Amber’s MOB Honey bees forage western Alberta plains, prairies, and rolling grassland east of the Rocky Mountains and the diverse cropland around the Calgary area.

Amber partners with businesses and organizations who share the same joy to ethically produce local raw, unpasteurized, complex, fluffy honey. The final blend is a tasty mix of clover, alfalfa, canola, aster and dandelion. 

Why Are Bees Important?

As pollinators, bees play a part in every aspect of the complex, interconnected ecosystems that allow a diverse number of different species to co-exist. They support the growth of trees, flowers, and other plants, which serve as food and shelter for creatures large and small. One third of our global food supply is pollinated by bees.

Sadly, over the past 15 years, colonies of bees have been disappearing, and the reason remains unknown. Referred to as “colony collapse disorder,” billions of honeybees worldwide are leaving their hives, never to return. In some regions, up to 90% of bees have disappeared!

We can all do our part to support these brilliant creatures:

  • Plant a good variety of annuals and perennials that will bloom from spring through to late fall.
  • Bees are drawn to flowers by their colours and odours and seem to prefer those on spikes, such as lavender, veronica spicata, salvia, and liatris spicata. Sunflowers, black-eyed Susans, goldenrod, honeysuckle, Echinacea and anything daisy-like also seem to work well.
  • Pots of flowers in bright bunches are pretty much a sure win. Place them in the same spot each year, as bees may have a built-in radar that causes them to return to known pollen-hunting grounds annually.
  • Different shapes of flowers are also suitable for attracting bees.
  • Some varieties of bees prefer natural habitats. Keep an area of your yard wild by allowing grass to grow tall enough to fold over and leave behind debris such as plants with hollow stems and dead branches.
  • Also, be sure to choose local honey too, which will support our honey bees and their beekeepers!
Bees
Close Up Bees

Tour Information

Don a protective suit and get up close to a working beehive guided by Amber’s ten years of experience inside honeybee colonies and five years of experience giving beehive tours. She will show and explain you their fascinating characteristics:

The waggle dance, pheromone communication, festooning, buzzing vibrations, altruism, wax construction, honey and pollen synthesis, hygienic behaviour, navigation patterns and signals.

Here’s a checklist of items not to forget when you come.

  • Long Pants
  • Gardening Gloves (not mandatory)
  • Water
  • Snacks
  • Boots
  • Long Socks (for tucking pants)
  • Camera
  • Family & Friends
  • Big Smiles!
  • Signed waiver
Beehives Tour

Important to Know Before You Come:

– Bees are calm, docile and do not sting unless directly threatened or managed carelessly.
– Only 1% of people are allergic to bee stings – KOAC and MOB have a safety kit that includes EpiPens, Benadryl and water to flush the system
– If you are severely allergic to bees, you should not sign up for this tour.
– All participants will sign a waiver on the day of the experience.  Children under the age of 18 will need a parent signature on the waiver.
– This experience is dependent on weather conditions.  In cases of inclement weather, we will have to cancel and reschedule the experience.
– Tours are ONLY conducted by Amber.