Get the Buzz on Skyline Living’s Newest Bees!

Sweet news from Skyline Living as the company will be adding eight new bee hives in four provinces to complement the 12 hives already at various buildings around Guelph.

The new hives, set to be installed in June at Skyline Living properties in Airdrie, Alberta, in Bedford, Nova Scotia, in Cambridge, Ontario and in Gatineau, Quebec, was officially announced to coincide with World Bee Day on May 20. Skyline Living has partnered with Alvéole for the most recent bee hive installations.

Since 2019, Skyline Living has installed 12 bee hives at various properties in Guelph. Last year, those hives produced 350 jars of honey. The honey was distributed to tenants of the buildings in February of this year.

“There is a lot of evidence that supports the idea that urban beekeeping has many unexpected benefits, including a better survival rate for bee populations in cities and large towns as opposed to rural and semi-rural areas,” said BJ Santavy, Vice President of Skyline Living. “Leveraging the rooftop or ground space of our residential properties for honey beekeeping and conservation is part of our responsibility as environmental stewards. Every time a new building is constructed, it has a potential impact on the natural habitat of bees. To offset this, we try to mitigate that by cultivating honeybee colonies to provide a habitat and, of course, collect the resulting honey.”

Here are some sweet facts about honey:

  • Natural honey has antimicrobial, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties;

  • Honey is sweeter than sugar, requiring smaller amounts to achieve the same sweetness level;

  • Without pollinators like bees, the global agricultural output would suffer dramatically;

  • Canada is home to more than 900 species of native pollinators, such as mason bees, carpenter bees, sweat bees, miner bees and squash bees;

  • In Canada, the value of bees pollinating fruit, vegetables and legumes is more than $1 billion per year;

  • Bees are not to be feared – most would rather avoid humans and will only sting as a last resort;

  • Honeybees are responsible for pollinating one-third of Canada's food crops.

In 2014, Slovenia proposed World Bee Day to the United Nations, which was unanimously adopted in 2017. Slovenia is considered a country of beekeepers with several programs designed to encouraging beekeeping and natural pollination. Slovenia was one of the first European Union member states to prohibit pesticides believed to be harmful to bee populations.

“The addition of more bee hives, now and in the future, is an integral part of our 2022 Sustainability Plan,” Santavy said. “Skyline Living has made strong sustainability commitments to be a part of any solutions that helps to strengthen our communities.”

Bee populations are currently in a state of global decline. Though the reasons are varied, experts believe colony collapse will prove devastating if not halted. Canada has experienced a significant decline in honeybee populations in recent years. According to the Canadian Honey Council, Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario honey producers lost an average of 40 to 45 per cent of their bees this in the past year. In Alberta, the province with the most bees, out of 300,000 colonies, about 100,000 to 120,000 didn't survive winter. Saskatchewan lost about 30 per cent while Quebec lost about 60 per cent of its bee population.

Scientists believe the main reasons for bee mortality are the use of pesticides, mites and diseases within colonies, urbanization and the associated loss of nectar-bearing flowers and climate change, amongst others. Urban beekeeping, in addition to reduced pesticide usage, the installation of pollinator gardens and others measures, is believed to be a significant tactic to combat declining bee populations.

Want to Learn More About Bees?
Join us for an immersive, conference-style workshop to learn more about urban beekeeping and the microcosm that is the hive. We’ll follow a bee’s life’s journey from when she first emerges from her cell to her final flight.

WHAT: Discover the World of Bees Workshop

WHEN: May 24 at 6 pm (EDT)

WHERE: Online! Click here.

About Skyline Living
As one of Canada’s most prominent apartment rental providers, Skyline Living exists to provide safe, clean, and comfortable places for its residents to call home. Providing homes in dozens of communities across Canada, Skyline Living is an industry leader in customer service, environmental stewardship, and community giving. It works to create and maintain thriving, vibrant communities for its residents, employees, and the neighbourhoods in which they live and work.  

To learn more about Skyline Living, or for rental inquiries, please visit SkylineLiving.ca.  

Skyline Living is a part of Skyline Group of Companies

For media inquiries, please contact:
James Harrison
Manager, Corporate Communications and Public Relations
E: jdcharrison@skylineliving.ca
T: (519) 826-0439