The City of Duncan is Canada’s newest Bee City, and the first on Vancouver Island.

The designation is a long-term commitment to protect pollinators, like bees. Duncan joins Kamloops and Clearwater as BC’s third Bee City.

The idea was brought forth by three members of the City of Duncan’s Junior Council at a meeting to support local pollinator protection.

Katia Bannister, grade twelve, Maia Cassie, grade nine, and Nyomi Godard, grade nine, are all students at Queen Margaret’s School (QMS) in Duncan. They are members of the Duncan Youth Council and presented the idea at a Regular Council Meeting on May 3.

At the time, they were working to get QMS designated as a Bee School. They have now successfully made QMS the seventh Bee School in BC.

Director of Bee City Canada, Vicki Wojcik says, “It’s always my pleasure to read through applications and see how our Bee Cities are working to support pollinators, people, and the planet. Duncan, BC has history with bees – Cowichan Beekeepers are an engaged and impressive group, 200 strong, working towards honeybee health and sustainable agriculture.”

The Cowichan Beekeepers Society has been active since 1954. They say they started as a way for like minded people to connect and share interests.

On their website they say, “There has never been a more important time to have honeybee colonies in your backyard. Urban habitat is well suited for honeybee forage. Early and late flowering bee loving plants are especially valuable. Honeybees will pollinate the fruit and vegetables in your garden and increase the production of your orchard trees.“