Australia: 2016 Spring/Summer Bees! Nucs, Packages and Queens!

Hi Everyone, our bee production for Spring/Summer 2016 is already selling out quickly.

Mated and marked Queens:
Kangaroo Island Ligurians $33 each plus express post shipping

Queens can be shipped to anyware in Australia except for Western Australia. Note: Tasmanian queens will occur an additional health certificate fee.


William Rogers
The Bunyip Beekeeper



I have had my fingers burnt by The Bunyip Beekeeper.

Pre purchased the Kangaroo Island Ligurian nuc back in June 2016 for $242 incl delivery for an eta of Dec 16. Bunyip could not supply the bees so they kindly offered a refund. I advised them in January 17 that I would like a refund. They then turn around and say that they are waiting on fund transfers b4 they can offer a refund. Full stop, no further communication.

As so much time has passed since I made the transaction, paypal have referred me to my Bank. I have lodged an official complaint with the CBA who are now in the process of getting my refund bank.

I can only assume that The Bunyip Beekeeper has a cash flow problem, having already spent my money and can’t give it back. I have been patient and polite with them and now they do not reply to any of my emails where I am demanding my refund. I have sent them a letter of demand, and they still do not even respond.

Bunyip’s, trading practices is down right fraud, offering a product and then not delivering and then disappearing off the face of the earth. I have a paper-trail of email records and my next step will be to lodge a complaint with the Police as well as with ASIC and Victorian Fair Trading because these practices need to be wiped out and discouraged.

All this loss of trade and headaches that I will cause them just to collect my $242 back which is RIGHTFULLY mine just doesn’t add up. If they do their sums, they can surely see that they have already lost more trade they they are trying to rip me off.

They are picking on the wrong customer.

Let the World know on this website, that THE BUNYIP BEEKEEPER (or Choose Natural Food Pty Ltd) is not a business/company that can be trusted, from my experience.

Last week I was at my local ABA meeting and a couple of members mentioned that they were planning to purchase supplies including the so called KI nucs from The Bunyip Beekeeper. Anyway, I put a stop to that. No one at my club will contact Bunyip and that gives me a ‘warm fuzzy feeling’.

That’s interesting.

I too ordered and paid for a KI Ligurian nucleus colony for delivery in Dec 2016. There were a series of weather conditions that were abnormal with unseasonal wind and rain in SE Australia that I was led to believe had delayed supply of the colonies. This was communicated by group email at the time, and offers of refund or over-wintering the colonies at his cost were made. I opted for the over-winter nucleus colony, and I look forward to starting my Flow hive in September/ October.

I have found William to be helpful and available by phone to date.

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Here in the west we have had some poor seasons from all reports due to unforeseen issues and nuc supplies are now 2 years behind at some distributors and it seems like the case over east in some areas which is unfortunate due to the increased interest in bee keeping. Like any type of farming the climate conditions dictate outcomes.
However there is no excuse for lack of communication especially if understanding and politeness is used. (Provided the correct email address is used ;))
The Bunyip Beekeeper is fully insured according to his profile but hasn’t visited this forum since October last year.

For those out there who don’t know what a bunyip is

Ironic that according to Wikki;
'The word bunyip is usually translated by Aboriginal Australians today as “devil” or “evil spirit”'
‘bunyip had also become a “synonym for impostor, pretender, humbug and the like” in the broader Australian community.’
I’m sure there is a reasonable explanation.
@TBB, care to comment?

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Happy to comment guys as I have nothing to hide:

This season has been completely abysmal and yes we have had cash flow issues due to:

  • Order cancellations and refunds issued (in order of requests)
  • 95% below average honey yields resulting in loss of revenue this season.
  • Sacrificed over 150 of our own colonies to satisfy nuc orders
  • Overheads (rent/insurance & Wages for staff)
  • Feeding costs to keep our colonies alive due to severe lack of forage
  • Overheated (melted down) hives on Kangaroo Island due to a heatwave

And with all of the above, we have still successfully supplied 420 colonies to everyone who has requested us to keep at it for them (actually the last colony was only dropped off 40 minutes ago in NSW!) and we’re in the process this month finishing making up 80 overwintered nucs to satisfy clients who opted for us to have them ready at the start of spring (overwintered nucs are kept in insulated hives and checked weekly overwinter of which we normally charge a premium fee due to additional costs to produce them, however due to the delays in the season we’re also wearing these costs!).

We’re a small business with 2 employees (not including myself or family), pre-orders allow us to order in equipment needed to produce the nucs (we have never hidden this fact and was even disclosed in our earlier advertisements on social media) So yes we spent the funds to:

  • Buy coreflute boxes that the nucs are transported in
  • Purchase new frames and foundation that are used in the production of nucs
  • Order Queens from breeders in advance that are needed for nucs
  • Bring in feed early season to boost strength of hives before we split them
  • Be able to feed splits to build them up before going out to customers.
  • Pay Wages and Fuel for employees to go out and work the hives and assemble equipment over winter…

This way we’re normally able to work efficiently over winter (assembling frames etc) and early season (building up colonies) as we know what the demand is etc.

However this complete write-off of a season really stressed our ability to meet orders. Bees are not like a mass manufactured product you can just simply buy off a shelf, we need to work with the colonies, ambient temperatures and seasonal conditions.It is just simply that this season we had to cope and overcome with many issues.

I don’t like making excuses - these are just simply the facts. I am not the only commercial beekeeper saying that there have been issues this season, even last night on ABC news there was a section on the poor performance this year!

Secondly we work with the Producer of Kangaroo Island which was pre-paid for all the colonies (by supplying them with equipment). We’re effectively a distributor for their nucs. I provided regular email updates to keep everyone praised on the progress and issues.

In addition, over the last 3 weeks I have suffered a health crisis that put me out of action, and I apologise If I was unable to be contacted during this time - I pride myself on my ability to keep everyone updated and we regularly update our social media platform (Facebook) I try to be as open as possible on what we’re currently working on to meet orders etc.

Due to the above issues and having to sacrifice a number of our own colonies this season, we have more than halved the number of colonies we will be producing next season as most of what I will personally be producing will be used to rebuild our own numbers. Therefore we are working with Australian Queen Bee Exporters in NSW who produce thousands of colonies per year and instead we will be delivering package bees in October. In addition we are still negotiating and putting supply contracts in place with other nucleus hive producers in EVERY state of Australia to produce and supply nucs on our behalf - thus spreading the workload over a wider area reducing the production risks.

In regards to refunds, I have worked through all refunds requests in ORDER of receiving the request (which would be the most fairest method), as of last week I had caught up on all pending refunds and have no outstanding refunds requests other than 3 customers who have yet to provide their BSB and Account Numbers. I have not personally paid myself a wage for the last 3 months to ensure that customers and staff are taken care of first!

@Schnucki Schnucki - I presume your name is Max, as this is the only Chargeback request we have ever received, once I had saw that this was received I realised that as I was away sick I had not processed your refund request and therefore did not dispute the Chargeback request and funds have already been debited from our account on the 19th and you should have received it by now, if not shortly (I have no idea how long this process takes).

skeggley - In regards to the name " Bunyip " - I live in a town called Bunyip.

We are in a relatively small industry and community, our Name and Reputation is everything to us and in no way are we hiding or being fraudulent. Nothing is perfect in life, we all make mistakes and I am happy to say that we’re making steps to future-proof us for any future climate/seasonal issues moving forward. I am really looking forward to next seasons honey crop! :slight_smile:

I again apologise for any inconveniences incurred.

Kind Regards,

William Rogers
The Bunyip Beekeeper


The Bunyip BeeKeeper

Yes, I am Max.

I entered in to a contract with YOU to supply ME a nuc, not your supplier. I paid YOU my money for the sole purpose of supplying ME a bee nucn ot your supplier. Don’t make your problems that you have with your supplier etc MY problem, that’s poor business practice and asking for a ‘class action’.

You offered a refund in January because you could not meet your deal of the contract which I accept is out of your control. I accept your offer of refund but it does not happen. You have my correct banking details and nothing happens, not even a word from you since 27 January. This is the day that you disappeared off the face of the earth for me, you were still fit and well then. Another short email from your staff regarding delays would have been appreciated cause I don’t do Facebook. I have just heard nothing until you respond in defense to my posting today on this forum.

You state that you have been out of action for the past 3 weeks for a health reason so let’s do our sums and write off April for communication. I personally sent you a email letter of demand on 10 March after not getting any reply from you since 27 January. So from then until April, still not a single word from you, and you did personally receive my email. You were back in action last week dealing with the Commonwealth Bank but still no word from you.

I do not accept your statement that you give customers a refund in order of requests. I personally know of three members from my local ABA group who purchased the same nucs on one invoice after my recommendation, after I purchased. They also requested a refund at least 4 weeks after my refund request and they were only given their refund about 4 weeks ago after threatening legal action, so don’t give the world that ‘bee’s wax’ story.

I am now in the market for 60 nucs for this coming Spring and will not be contacting your business, all because of a lousy $242 deal that you could not honour. (If anyone knows of a RELIABLE nuc supplier for Italian bees around the Blue Mtns, NSW area, please advise.)

My money has still not been received as yet, but that’s not your problem - it’s still mine.

I cannot and will not promote your business as a reliable business to do mail order with and good luck for anyone still waiting on your bees come October, I won’t be holding my breath for you, life’s too short.

So TBB, don’t go promoting your business on forums such as this, that is not why they are set up for in the first place. And if your business practices & procedures are not up to scratch, they are then exposed to the World.

Hi Max,

Thank you for your feedback, I apologise for the lack of communication on this matter since the 27th of Jan and completely understand your frustration.

I wish you well on your future endeavours.

Kind Regards,


I’m pleased to report that my nuc from the Bunyip Beekkeeper has turned out to be strong. It arrived in early November (2017). And I added my super this week. It was worth the wait: thank you William, both for your patience, understanding and generous help afterwards. It is all much appreciated!
Kind regards


No problem at all Michael, please feel free to contact us in the future should you require any assistance.




An update: I harvested my first ever honey last weekend. A modest 1 kg from a capped flow frame. Yellow box. A light colour, low viscosity, sweet honey. Apparently how honey used to taste according to a septuagenarian that tried it! A marvellous adventure to date. Thank you to all who have helped in a material sense. As well as to those who contribute to this forum: browsing and learning is most enjoyable here.