Mary Bumby

The First Person To Take Honey Bees To New Zealand

This is the remarkable story of Mary Bumby who was the first person to take honeybees to New Zealand. When, in 1838, her brother, John, was appointed as superintendent missionary at the Mangungu Mission House in New Zealand she decided to accompany him to look after him and act as his housekeeper.

Because John liked honey Mary took with her two skeps of bees on the five ­month long voyage, arriving in New Zealand in March 1839.

Both Mary and John were devout Wesleyan Methodists and their faith must have helped them through the many trials and tribulations they suffered during the years at the Mission House.

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