Apr 29, 2021

Meet The Beekeeper Behind Bee Rescue: Justin Scott!

In celebration of World Bee Day and our planet’s precious pollinators, Comvita is rescuing 5 Million bees by working with independent beekeepers across the US to safely relocate hives that have found their way into unwelcome areas. This interview is part of a series of introductions to get to know the lives and work of real, professional beekeepers. See what inspires them about their work, learn fascinating facts about bees, and life lessons the beehive can teach us.

Meet beekeeper Justin Scott (also known as @sweetstingersok ), from Edmond, Oklahoma.

How long have you been beekeeping?

29 years

How did you get involved in beekeeping?

My grandfather kept bees and I started helping him in the hives around the age of 10. Been doing it ever since. We started Sweet Stingers Honey and Apiary 4-5 years ago when our son had allergy problems. The bees helped him and he returned the favor by wanting to learn about them.

What do you love about beekeeping?

Beekeeping is my meditation, my zen. For me working in the hives, being in the beeyards, watching bees come and go is peaceful. Even when it's busy and chaotic it never seems like work. Showing kids and adults the inner workings of a hive or placing hives in backyards for families to enjoy, and sharing with my kids and others what my grandfather passed along to me is what I love about beekeeping.

What are your favorite facts about bees?

A worker bee will fly the equivalent of 1.5 times around the world in her short 6-8 week lifespan. A single bee produces about 1/12 of a teaspoon in their lifetime. Honey bees are not born knowing how to make honey. They must be taught. It takes around 2 million flowers to make 1 pound of honey.

What lessons have you learned from bees that are helpful in other areas of your life?

Move slowly and observe. Always give 100%. There is no 50/50 rule when it comes to bees. When something needs to be done, do it. Seize every moment. Keep things tidy, work hard, stay focused, and work together.

What advice or tips do you have for people who want to help bees where they live?

Plant bee friendly forage, flowers trees and shrubs. Let weeds grow, put away the pesticides and herbicides. Don't be afraid of bees, they are here to work, pollinate flowers and crops. They mean no harm.

What do you wish people knew about how bees impact the world around us?

Bees are not only directly responsible for the food we eat but also for the quality of the produce. Bees help beautify the surrounding area. Plants need pollination and bees need nectar and pollen to raise a healthy colony. They work hand in hand. Bees help create diverse ecosystems through pollination and these diverse ecosystems provide food, shelter, host plants and more for wildlife, plant life and life for humans.

Do you have any other thoughts about working together with Comvita to rescue bees?

We are dedicated to showing people the beauty of the hives. Not all honey is equal, not all hives are equal. It's about the bees and the joy of the hive.