I have been meaning to get out and visit Peter for like forever. As well as being one of our more seasoned bee keepers, Peter was responsible for helping discover and name one of our varieties of bees. The Tetragonula Davenporti. I wanted to catch up, hear the story about that and see what I could learn from the man. Have to say he is very easy going and easy to chat to.
Peter Davenport video 2
Questions for Peter Davenport
How did you become interested in Stingless bees?
When I was a teenager I had native bees, I always killed them. Bulldozers ran over them and they were always pest infested so I gave up for a while. my father showed me my first one when I was 4 years old. My brother and I used to poke sticks at them while dad harvested honey from the honey bees.
Can you think of a memory or story that stands out with your bee keeping?
One day I nearly fell a tree on myself. I just elbowed it away. Twice a tree fell and hit a neighbouring tree and broke in half and the whole top came down where I had been standing.
What type of Stingless bee is your favourite and why?
I should say Davenporti but they are hard to propagate. Carbonaria is my favourite because they are good to work with. Hockingsi are going around taking over everything.
What things do you like about your box design and what inspirations did you have?
I never had anyone show me how to make boxes and in the beginning they were huge. After some time I arrived at my 7 inch by 7inch cube and I have followed that design ever since.
Peter Davenport, Why do you believe bees are important?
They play their part in the pollination role. They are of great interest to people, people love them as pets
Have you learned something recently about bees that you would wish to share?
I’d like to share, wankers wanting new hives after they have fucking killed it.
Finally what is your one piece of life advice you would share with the world?
Don’t give up trying. Keep being persistent.
A note on Tetragonula davenporti: People will often email and ask me, “Do I have davenporti?” I have to be honest and say “I do not know” davenporti are so similar in their characteristics to that of Tetragonula hockingsi that it would be difficult for me to tell.
There is only one man that can possibly identify them, that is Peter. His decades of looking at them is how he was able to pick the differences enough to have them sent off for identification. Even the scientific community was sceptical to begin with.
If you would like to read a little on the scientific identification you can click this link. Tetragonula davenporti
Why not check out the last interview with Alex here