Auchlochan prides itself on the facilities and variety of activities it offers to its residents and everyone is hoping that the bees will be a great addition to this; not only by producing some delicious, homemade honey for residents to enjoy, but also in becoming an attraction for the public during the summer months.
With the bees’ move-in date set for May, it’s currently all systems go at the retirement community as staff and residents help to clear the ground and build the hives in the Italian terraced garden, all under the watchful eye of head gardener Chris Allan.
The newcomers are not expected to fulfil the lower age limit of 55, especially as the worker bees only have a six-week lifespan during honey making season.
But they will live entirely independently much like the other residents - with a little help from the Auchlochan Gardening Club!
The bees will consist of one queen and 15 worker bees and drones. However, with a queen being able to lay 2,500 eggs per day, this population will soon grow to the number needed to pollenate Auchlochan’s 50-acre estate.
Chris Allan said: “The protective bee suits have been purchased and we are now looking for volunteer beekeepers amongst the residents and staff who are going to be trained by a local bee keeping expert.
“A productive hive can produce up to 11 kilograms of honey in a season, which is more than enough for our lovely residents and Bistro staff to use and enjoy!”