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Student dorms in Vienna find home for 200,000 bees

Student dorms in Vienna find home for 200,000 bees

The beekeepers will produce around 60 kilograms of honey per year and students will get a portion

Today, the City of Vienna unveiled a new habitat for over 200,000 bees with hives placed on the roof of a student accommodation building in the 19th district. The hives are an initiative by the Wiener Bezirksimkerei (Viennese District Beekeeping), an organisation that specialises in maintaining bee colonies and producing fresh honey in the city itself.

The student accommodation is called Viennabase19 and is maintained by SE Wiener Standortentwicklung GmbH and Wien Holding. Wien Holding has pledged a serious commitment to promoting the sustainability goals of the city and is also committed to its partnership with Vienna District Beekeeping.

To support the hives and their population, they will use the green space around the student accommodation to plant fruit trees and flowers, ensuring a fresh pollen supply in the spring and summer months.

Busy bees

According to the organisations, cities offer a perfect habitat for bees, from parks to back gardens to balcony flowers. The new idea here is to combine beekeeping with student accommodation, making use of the roofs as a sort of free 'real estate’.

beesThe bees are exploring their new habitat on top of Viennabase19,
Source: David Bohmann via City of Vienna

The main idea behind the move is the gradual re-introduction of bees to the urban environment, promoting an exceptional level of biodiversity. This initiative goes extremely well with the green facades programme Vienna introduced earlier in the summer.

The Viennese District Beekeeping will look after the hives and produce around 60 kilograms of blossom honey, with a portion of it going to the students living in the building.

Adriana Traunmüller, operational manager of Vienna District Beekeeping was quoted in a press release, saying: “We beekeepers are particularly pleased that our bees have found a new home on the roofs of Viennabase19. Our five bee colonies benefit from the greenery around the dormitory and the residents are also brought closer to nature and especially the importance of the honeybees and their wild relatives as the main pollinators of our food.”

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