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Surfing bees in VIC


Hi all,

I was surfing yesterday at Bells Beach (VIC Australia) and noticed a number of solitary bees fly past me heading back to shore. They were flying quite low, the wind was offshore (blowing from the north out to sea).

Anyone know what they were up to?


Perhaps scoring your surfing style? :smile:

The only other thing I can think of is getting blown out to sea, then trying to fly back home. :blush:


I agree with Dawn, bees like many other insects get blown out to see by strong off shore winds.

I have had butterflies land on my boat 30 miles out to sea. That was after strong offshore winds. We ventured out after the strong winds subsided.


Hopefully they’re not off some ship from overseas…


There was a cargo ship sitting out to sea which is unusual in that spot… Are individual bees a concern out is it only when a hive comes ashore?


Given that you could see it, and you probably weren’t standing when you did, it was probably about 5 miles away. I base that on a 6 ft person seeing approximately 20 miles out to see, then applying some very crude “back of the envelope” trigonometry. :blush:

If it was a foreign cargo ship it may have a stowaway swarm or a hive on board. In that case, they could easily be bringing Varroa and other stuff with them. :open_mouth: I would consider reporting it, but then I am probably over-cautious. :wink:


Given that the winds were off shore and you sighted single bees in the flight and not a swarm I suspect they were blown off shore while foraging the local flora. If there was a swarm sized flight of bees then that is a different matter and I would have reported my thoughts to Customs and the Dept of Agriculture that the ship may have a bee issue.

It would be better to be cautious than complacent.

Welcome to the forum where you will find lots of information and like minded people discussing all things bee’s.


Agree. Could well be foragers looking for some fresh nectar.


When a ship is to be held out of the harbor to wait for berthing the ship is given the latitude and longitude to anchor till the berth is vacant, it is not up to the captain to anchor wherever he thinks is good for him. If more ships are being held at anchor than normal then the lesser used points would be used. I remember sailing south off Gladstone Qld at night, the ships at anchor were more lit up than the lights of Gladstone waiting their turn to go into harbor and load with coal.