Beekeeping with honey bees is the usual type of beekeeping done all over the world. In the United States, North Dakota, California, South Dakota, and Florida are the states responsible for producing the most honey every year. An average person consumes 1.3 pounds of honey every year, which is the nectar taken from at least 2 million flowers. Honey is used for a variety of uses such as a cure for ailments, as an energy booster, and even to add shine to one’s hair. Based on these facts, one can see the importance of honey bees and beekeeping.
Beekeeping with honey bees isn’t the only type of beekeeping. Two other types of beekeeping involve the raising of queen bees and pollination beekeeping. The latter involves raising bees to help in pollination. Usually the beekeepers who do pollination beekeeping work hand-in-hand with farmers to help improve the growth of their crops. The traditional beekeeping with honeybees involves producing honey either as a stand-alone business or with major distributors.
Aside from the types of beekeeping, there is a classification of beekeepers. Commercial beekeepers handle not just one bee colony, but thousands of bee colonies. These beekeepers are able to produce millions of pounds of honey every year, and are the main sources of the honey which can be found on supermarket shelves.
On the other end of the spectrum are the hobby beekeepers. Unlike the commercial beekeepers, hobby beekeepers only keep bees and their beehives in order to study natural science and even the ecosystem. Honey is a sweet reward for their efforts. The sideline beekeeper is stuck between the two kinds of beekeepers. This beekeeper keeps about 300 bee colonies and produces a modest amount of delicious honey. Unlike commercial beekeepers, he/she only uses beekeeping as a way to obtain extra money or income.
Here are some facts about honey bees. It takes only an ounce of honey to give a honey bee enough energy to fly all over the world. One can imagine how much energy it can give to a person who eats honey for breakfast every day. A honey bee usually visits 1,500 flowers just to get one load of pollen, and it would have to fly 55,000 miles to get one pound of honey. Based on this trivia, it isn’t surprising how the old adage of “busy as a bee” came about.
Our first encounters with honeybees were long ago, most likely in Africa. Someone discovered – probably simultaneously – that these tree-dwelling insects produced a sweet, sticky substance unlike any other, and that they had stings in their tails.
When fire became portable, someone else discovered that smoke caused bees to become more amenable to robbing.
Some time later, a more settled tribe found that they could house bees in baskets or pots, which saved them the trouble of climbing trees to get the honey, and the craft of beekeeping was born. Pots, baskets and logs continued in use for many centuries, and while proficient beekeepers would have understood a good deal of the behaviour of their charges, the inner secrets of the hive remained closed from observers until the end of the 18th century, when a blind Swiss by the name of François Huber found them out through the medium of his faithful – and sighted – servant, Burnens. Huber’s New Observations on the Natural History of Bees remains a classic to this day.
Some 30 years later, Jan Dzieraon developed Huber’s experimental hive further to create the first truly practical, movable-frame beehive, and shortly afterwards in 1852, Rev. Lorenzo Lorraine Langstroth publicized and patented his own version. Such was his talent for publicity and marketing that the ‘Langstroth’ became and remains the standard hive in the USA and the model upon which most other variants are based.
However, this type of hive is expensive to buy, very difficult for amateur woodworkers to build – due to the precise dimensions and many small parts needed for frames – requires constant maintenance, causes great disturbance to the lives of bees, and is heavy and cumbersome in use. Many women, especially, have been put off beekeeping by the weight-lifting needed to harvest honey from a Langstroth-type hive, and hernias are commonplace among commercial beekeepers.
In Nepal, honey-hunting is still practised by men descending cliffs on ropes and using long poles to dislodge chunks of comb. Elsewhere, bees are kept in skeps, baskets, pots, cavities in walls and other containers devised from local materials and – we can deduce from their longevity – more-or-less suitable both for bees and for their keepers. In Africa, probably the original home of the honeybee, the top bar hive was developed as an ‘intermediate technology’ solution, capable of being constructed using local skills and materials and being, in essence, a beekeeper-friendly hollow log, having the advantages of movable combs but without the need for machine-made parts.
Whatever the accommodation we offer them, our meetings with bees have always been a process of negotiation, albeit somewhat one-sided. We can protect ourselves from them, but they ultimately have no protection from us. The encroachment of chemical agriculture, deforestation and urbanization have reduced their natural habitat, while toxic cocktails of insecticides have poisoned their flowers.
The honeybee has come to be seen as the ‘canary in the coal mine’ of our civilization and she is showing early warning signs of her imminent demise, to which we must pay urgent attention.
Our challenge now is to re-negotiate our relationship with bees: we must learn to protect and nurture them, rather than simply exploit them, and we need to learn to listen to what they need from us. The process of discovering how we can most effectively do that is the project that myself and others have set ourselves, and we hope that many more will join us and carry this work forward.
We acknowledge the paradox inherent in the phrase ‘natural beekeeping’: as soon as we consider ‘keeping’ bees, we begin to stray from what is truly ‘natural’. In nature, only bees keep bees.
To be considered ‘natural’, our beekeeping practice must take into account:
the natural impulses and behaviour of bees, including – foraging, swarming, storing food and defending their nest
how hive design affects bees
the suitability of materials used in hive construction, including considerations of sustainability
the nature and frequency of our interventions
the impact of a localized increase in honeybee population on other species of pollinators
the balance between honey harvesting and the bees’ own needs
the nature of any added inputs – medications, feeding
We are engaged in a process of working towards the ultimately unattainable notion of completely ‘natural’ beekeeping, while acknowledging that the bees will go their own way regardless of our wishes. Our relationship with them is that of facilitator or minder rather than ‘keeper’. We could say that the role of the natural beekeeper is to enable our bees to attain the fullest possible expression of their bee-ness while in our care.
Our overall goal in natural beekeeping is to achieve a state of sustainability: balancing inputs and outputs such that our activities enhance rather than damage the health of our bees, other species and the planet.
To be truly sustainable, a system must be as close to carbon-neutral as it can be, requiring no synthetic inputs and having no detrimental impact on the natural environment. So if we are to continue to have a relationship with honeybees, we have to consider what impact current beekeeping practices have and how our ‘natural’ approach seeks to improve on this state of affairs.
A typical commercial beekeeping operation is a real energy hog. Lumber – which may or may not come from sustainable sources – is sliced and milled by powered machinery prior to assembly into hive boxes, which are transported by road, sea or rail to be further distributed by road to their apiary sites. Regular visits by beekeepers require oil-derived fuel, and more is needed to fire the boilers to heat the considerable quantities of water needed for sterilizing woodwork and washing down de-cappers, extractors, tanks and floors. More power is needed to retrieve the crop, to extract it and to mix and distribute the sugar syrup needed for the bees’ survival following the removal of their stores. Honey must then be filtered, bottled and distributed to wholesalers and thence to retail outlets. Meanwhile, beeswax is recovered by means of steam or boiling water, cleaned and filtered and sent off to be re-melted and turned into sheets of foundation, which are then sold back to the beekeepers for insertion into frames for next season.
Migratory beekeepers in the USA truck hives by the thousands clear across the country for the almond pollination, while in the UK this type of activity is nowadays largely restricted to taking hives up to the moors in August for the heather crop, and some orchard pollination work.
Due to what might be called the Langstroth hegemony, this whole scenario is also enacted in miniature by amateur beekeepers, who largely mimic the activities of their commercial brethren. They may only have a few hives at the bottom of their gardens, but in most cases they have not considered any alternative to the expensive, energy-hungry equipment available from the glossy catalogues of the beekeepers’ suppliers.
We know that bees need nothing much more than a dry, ventilated cavity in which to build their nest. Instead, ‘modern’ beekeepers insist on supplying them with a box full of wooden frames, in which are mounted sheets of wax, helpfully imprinted with oversized ‘worker-bee’ hexagonal cell bases. A newly-hived swarm of bees must be surprised indeed to find so much done for them: ready-made comb bases hung in neat rows, with spaces all around them for access – what a boon for a busy colony!
But what may at first sight appear to be a great convenience, also has some significant drawbacks. All these imprinted cells are the same size, yet anyone who has observed natural comb knows that cell sizes vary considerably, and not just between workers and drones: worker cells themselves vary in diameter according to rules only bees are aware of. All those dead-straight frames may look neat, but bees don’t build dead-straight comb – they like a gentle curve here and there. And if you watch bees building natural comb in an unrestricted space, they hang in chains, legs linked, as if laying out the dimensions of the comb in space as they work above their own heads – something they cannot do on foundation.
So a good deal of so-called ‘modern’ beekeeping – in fact, virtually unchanged since the mid-19th century – is unsustainable from our point of view, as well as being a nuisance to bees. In terms of honey yield, it is clearly an improvement on logs and skeps, but in terms of bee health and energy efficiency, it has turned out to be a disaster.
The job of the natural beekeeper is to find ways of interacting with bees that are truly sustainable, both for the bees themselves and for the planet.
In The Barefoot Beekeeper, I proposed the following three, simple principles for the ‘natural’ beekeeper to consider:
Interference in the natural lives of the bees is kept to a minimum.
Nothing is put into the hive that is known to be, or likely to be harmful either to the bees, to us or to the wider environment and nothing is taken out that the bees cannot afford to lose.
The bees know what they are doing: our job is to listen to them and provide the optimum conditions for their well-being, both inside and outside the hive.
These principles seem to me to form a solid foundation for our thinking about how we approach bees and beekeeping. As soon as we step beyond those basic principles and attempt further to define the parameters, we find ourselves in danger of beginning to create a ‘book of rules’. And it doesn’t take much looking around the world today to see how divisive and destructive other ‘books of rules’ have been.
‘Natural’, ‘balanced’ or ‘sustainable’ beekeeping – whatever name we give it – is a process, not a destination. We have to remain flexible and always be on the lookout for ways to improve our techniques, so everything in this book is offered in this spirit: indications of what seems to work, always with the possibility that there are even better ways yet to be discovered, or – more likely – re-discovered, as there is really nothing new in beekeeping.
Historically, we began our relationship with bees when somebody discovered that the taste of honey was worth the pain it cost to harvest. We became honey-hunters, and while there were few of us and many of them, this was sustainable.
When somebody discovered that it was possible to offer shelter to honeybees while they made their honey, and then kill them off to raid their stores, we became bee keepers, and while there were few bee keepers and many honeybees, that too was sustainable.
Then someone invented a way to house bees that did not require them to be killed, but instead allowed people to manage and control them to some extent, arranging things so as to trick them into producing more honey for their masters than for themselves, and we became bee farmers. And that was sustainable for a while because there were still many of them and although there were also many of us, we could manipulate their reproduction so as to make more of them as we needed.
Now it has become clear that we have gone too far, for bees have begun to suffer from diseases that were virtually unknown in the old days, and they have to be given medicines in order to keep them alive. And because a whole industry has grown up around the farming of these bees, and there is a lot of money at stake, beekeepers have been slow to change their ways and many could not do so for fear of bankruptcy, and so the health of the honeybees has become worse and they are subject to parasites and viruses that never troubled them in the past.
Meanwhile, we forgot how to grow food in the way that we once had done because we were no longer inclined to labour in the fields, and instead devised clever ways to make the soil support more crops. We poured fertilizers onto our fields and killed off inconvenient creatures with ‘pesticides’ – defining a whole class of living organisms as our enemies and therefore dispensable. This was never sustainable, and never can be.
And that is where we find ourselves today, and this is the problem we face: bees have become weakened through exploitation and a toxic agricultural system, allied to the impossible expectation of continuous economic growth.
As ‘natural beekeepers’, our most pressing work is to restore bees to their original, healthy state. We think of ourselves as ‘keepers’ in the sense of ‘nurturing and supporting’ rather than ‘enslaving’. We must seek to protect and conserve the honeybee by working within their natural capacity, not constantly urging them towards ever greater production. We must challenge the whole agricultural and economic system that has caused us to arrive at this point, because without change at that level, the future for both us and the bees is bleak.
We can make a start by re-establishing more natural, non-violent ways of working with bees: neither we nor they have any need of routine or prophylactic ‘treatments’ with synthetic antibiotics, fungicides or miticides. We don’t need to operate ‘honey factories’ – we can content ourselves with providing accommodation for bees in return for whatever they can afford to give us. In some years, this may be nothing at all, while in others there may be an abundant harvest.
Such is nature: bees depend on honey for their survival; we do not.
If the price of returning bees to a state of natural, robust health is a little less honey on our toast, is it not a worthwhile sacrifice?
Have you ever wanted to get into beekeeping? With the depletion of the honeybee population, it’s more popular now than ever to get started in this hobby. Usually you’ll find supplies and things all over the web in a million places (or at least that’s what I found when I was starting out.) Thankfully, it’s not that difficult to begin do-it-yourself beekeeping when you understand a few basics.
With so many different types and styles of beekeeping products on the market today, it can be difficult to know which one to choose. The truth is that it really helps to know what the main features are which are available to you, and how much you should spend.
The first thing you’ll need is, of course, a bee hive. Without this, your bees won’t stick around very long! There are lots of options out there, ranging from wood bee hives to those made of a polymer material. In fact no two manufacturers are exactly the same, but you can say a few things about these two types of hives. A wooden hive is the most common option. It usually consists of a wooden box with “frames” inside. Each frame contains a waxy cell structure into which the bees will create honey. The bottom-most part of the hive is for the queen. Wooden hives are very durable and will last for many seasons. The other common option is a hive made out of a styrofoam-like material. The chief advantage of these bee hives is that the insulation these provide from the elements can help to protect your bees from variations in temperature. This is especially important if you live in a cold climate, or for that matter a really hot one. These hives also tend to be a bit less expensive than the wooden variety, but the trade off is that they also tend to be less durable. Not that I expect you’ll be dropping your hive, but keep in mind that these are more subject to breakage. Wooden hives by contrast are stronger and generally speaking are also larger.
However, both types of bee hive are available in high quality options. It is a good idea to buy from someone who specializes in beekeeping products (see our resource section below.) This means you can be sure that the bee hives are the highest quality possible, and also that the company selling them is able to provide you with the best possible customer service. I’d avoid buying beekeeping products used because formerly-owned bee hives could quite possibly have damage or structural defects. In addition, used hives could also carry disease, which can infect your new bee population. Probably not something you want to have happen!
Although you often can’t tell much until you receive your hive, you should be able to figure out a lot beforehand. First of all, make sure your beekeeping products are from a solid manufacturer, such as Dadant. All too often, cheap builds are made in China or elsewhere. While they will almost certainly be cheaper, like most other things in life you get what you pay for. That being said, there are many high quality options available in price ranges in the low hundreds. You also want to make sure the interior is spacious, and make sure that the model you get has sufficient space to hold whatever size bee colony you’d like to start with. Keep in mind that you can usually add frames or a second hive later on. But if you’re already planning to grow a large colony, then start larger. On the other hand, if you plan to start small, or if you plan to move the hive around until you settle on a location, then one of the more portable options discussed above might be a better option for you.
I hope this quick article was useful to you in your search for the right beekeeping supplies! With a little time and research, it will be easy for you to find the best bee hives for your needs. Happy farming!
Understanding bees’ behavior can disturb you. Knowing how they work and attack when bothered can induce fear to most people. Bees are known to be gentle but can be very dangerous and can sometimes lead to your death. Hence, it is highly recommended that a beekeeper should provide themselves proper and sufficient tools and equipment. It is important that you have protection against bee stings when you are dealing with bees.
One of the most important beekeeping equipment is the beekeeper suit. This clothing serves as a protective gear for beekeepers. It consists of three main parts which are the jacket and pants, beekeeping hat with veil, and gloves.
Jackets and Pants
The jacket and pants should be light-colored since bees are attracted to bright colors. Furthermore, they should be a bit larger so that the suit can still provide enough protection to the beekeeper by giving a space between the skin and the cloth.
Veil with a Hat
The most vulnerable part of our body is the face. Therefore, it must be protected from bees which can cause allergies or stings to your skin. The veil with a hat keeps your face away from the danger that bee stings bring.
A Pair of Gloves
A pair of gloves is also an essential part of a suit in beekeeping. Although it makes it difficult for the beekeeper to manage the hives, it still provides safety and protection to your hands from danger when bees attack you.
The market has a wide variety of beekeeping protective suits. They come in different styles and sizes. However, bear in mind the most priority is to keep you away from bees. In selecting a protective suit in beekeeping, here are some excellent tips:
Choose a suit that fits you right and comfortably. Check the arm and leg holes.
The hat and veil must have enough and good ventilation.
The whole suit should possess a good quality. Inspect the zippers and quality of the stitches made.
Making your Own Protective Beekeeping Clothing You have the options of buying your beekeeping suit or construct your own in easy and effective ways. Making your own protective gear include these following simple steps:
Buy a coverall with light colors. Sew the elastic to the wrist and ankle openings.
Wear boots that can reach the upper part of your ankles.
Look for a pair of gloves that extends above your wrists. It should fit your wrists so that bees won’t enter your suit.
Attach the Velcro around the neck of the coverall. Construct a veil which can be just made out of your old mosquito netting.
Wearing proper protective clothing is a must for every beekeeper when working with bees. He must defend and protect his own body from dreadful bee stings which can be fatal especially to people who are allergic to the bee venom. Beekeeping can be fascinating form of business. Nevertheless, persons who are about to engage on it should make safety and protection tops their priority list. Allowing yourself to manage your hives should also keep you safe and away from risk of getting stung by your bothered bees.
There are many benefits of beekeeping that beekeepers find irresistible. Keeping bees is among the simplest money-making activities that people can do at home. Bees are easier to take care of than animals like cows and goats. Success in beekeeping depends on how equipped a potential apiarist is. Being equipped means having the right tackle and knowledge in regard to bee nutrition, handling and health.
If bees are given everything they deserve on a daily basis a farmer is likely to enjoy numerous benefits of beekeeping. These advantages can be grouped based on the bees themselves and the products they produce. Bees produce their honey using nectar and pollen grains. The process through which they collect these ingredients from the fields is called pollination. Naturally, pollination is the process through which fertilization occurs in plants.
In other words, when a bee is correcting pollen on top of the male reproductive part of a plant (stamen) it naturally causes some of the grains to fall onto the female reproductive part of a plant (pistil) through pollination. Fertilization follows when a plant starts to produce seeds and fruit. Without bees and other pollinators such as wasps and birds it would be difficult for humans to eat fruits and vegetables. Pollination is therefore among the most popular benefits of beekeeping. They are needed by the environment.
Bees produce a product called honey. Everybody loves honey because of its sweetness. It is eaten raw mainly but some people boil it in beverages such as tea and coffee. Honey is one of the ancient medicines that were used to treat wounds, ulcers, skin and other parts of the body. Today companies that make skin-care products reap the most benefits of beekeeping. Not only do they use honey to make various skin beauty products but also royal jelly. Also called bee’s milk, royal jelly is a whitish fluid that is naturally produced by bees and it is a major ingredient in various anti-aging products.
Everyone wants to look young these days and bee’s products including beeswax have desirable properties known to keep the skin soft and healthy. As a beekeeper this means that keeping bees will guarantee more money. Honey, royal jelly and beeswax are all priceless products that most people demand on a daily basis. The benefits of beekeeping will not only come in the form of money a farmer could make after selling the above mentioned products. Bee farmers can also use these ingredients to improve their body health and skin appearance.
Anyone who has been following the news about bee farming knows that the honeybees have been reducing in numbers in the recent years. The major contributors of this are global warming factors that have ruined the environment greatly. This means that having an apiary in the backyard is beneficial to a whole community. It can become a learning centre leased by schools, botanists, nature centers and other organizations in a local area. What is more, the apiarist can personally get a chance to be famous if his or her apiary is used to conduct biological studies. The benefits of beekeeping are endless and the most important thing to do is to protect the bees.
So you are about to begin your new hobby or life style job of beekeeping, the first question you need to answer, is exactly what beekeeping equipment essentials are necessary?
The major Beekeeping Equipment essentials are explained below:-
The major issue to be first addressed is exactly what type of beehive you are going to utilise. There are many types to consider and each has its advantages and disadvantages.
Some of the issues needing to be considered are whether the beehive will be attached on a platform or sitting directly on the ground, its size and ease of access for cleaning, feeding the bees, etc. The best suggestion prior to deciding on the type of bee hive to go with is to visit some local beekeepers and see what they are using. Select the type that best suits your style and then either purchase from a supplier or build one yourself.
The bees will adapt to anything you provide, but the most important aspect is that the beehive needs to be dry inside.
Beekeeping Protective Clothing
Working with bees means you face the occupational hazard of being stung and thus to nullify the risk you need to consider the various beekeeping protective clothing that is available.
If your budget is not a problem, then buying the best bee suit available is an obvious choice. These bee suits are basically full body protection and all but eliminate the risk of getting stung. If money is an issue, then the minimum necessary is coverage for your head and shoulders and a good pair of gloves.
A hive tool is necessary in order for you to be able to work efficiently upon your beehive. The hive tool is used for scraping the wax, to loosen hive parts and manipulate the hive frames.
The Bee Smoker is used when the bees need to be calmed, smoke is poured into the hive and it acts like a sedative and is not harmful to the bees.
At different times of the year, usually winter, you will need to feed the bees to supplement their diet, when their natural food supplies are low. The bee feeder is a tool that allows syrup to be delivered inside of the beehive and there are many varieties on offer.
Once all the essential equipment has been decided on and purchased then obviously the most essential beekeeping equipment is the choice of the Bees themselves.
The choice of bees is obviously a very subjective and personal one, the best method is to ask around your local beekeepers to see if any of them have any on offer. Obviously you only want to purchase from successful beekeepers to ensure you get access to a healthy colony.
Beekeeping is all about bee farming. This type of farming is practiced all over the world. It is a source of income for countless farmers who sell their produce to people and organizations. Keeping bees is among the cost-effective ways of utilizing a backyard wisely. This beekeeping does not require big acres of land to be successful.
A small plot of land can be enough for both small and large-scale beekeeping projects. Anyone looking to make more money can farm bees on a part-time basis. Bees require very little attention especially during spring and summer when many different flowers drape the fields. This does not mean that a person can wake up one day and create do beekeeping. A potential beekeeper should take enough time to plan a project. In the course of planning he or she has to seek knowledge either by doing an elementary course or visiting an apiary to get practical lessons.
The most difficult part of beekeeping is the launching stage. Without knowing what one is doing it is possible to have a bad beginning. The easiest way to start is to search for a local beekeeper’s organization or association. The role of these organizations is to keep the members updated with any useful information regarding bees. Next, one has to determine where to position an apiary in the backyard.
Bees, as many people know, are stinging insects and they can be hazardous in homes that have children and pets. An aspiring beekeeper must choose a hidden area that is quite far from the home to start beekeeping. The apiary should be fenced around to prevent animals and little children from accessing the area without the knowledge of the bee farmer. When an area is selected, the next step is choosing beekeeping equipment.
The beehive is the shelter for the honeybees and it is therefore the most important equipment for beekeeping. There are different types of beehives but one should choose the types that are available in his or her country. Langstroth is used everywhere in the world. Its parts are easy to find when they need to be replaced. Other types include top-bar hives, national hives, WBC hives and commercial hives. Each beehive has its pros and cons that a customer must know prior to buying.
Beekeeping is also about knowing how each hive looks like inside. One should find out about the frames for wax combs and related details. Other necessary tools include precautionary clothing that includes a protective suit with a head veil. This protective clothing keeps one safe from bee stings. A smoker, hive tool, queen bee hair clip catcher, and bee brush are among other essential accessories.
Choice of honeybees is part of bee farming. When a farmer decides to buy only a queen bee his or her project might take a longer time. Bees are everywhere in the environment but it is not easy to attract them to a beehive. The best way out is to purchase a few packages of bees to start a colony with. The best beekeeping practice involves pure breeds of bees not the hybrid breeds.
This is the thing; bees WILL always sting! Honey can definitely get you money!
A beekeeping guide is absolutely necessary if you are looking to get it right with apiculture. Don’t you start getting delirious, going off getting awed by these insects that produce the sweetest food substance known to man, they certainly won’t kiss you back and can harm you very badly.
So what’s a beekeeping guide anyway you might ask? It is precisely that ‘a beekeeping guide’! If you are starting out, it is one of the things that you want to always have it nearby but even more importantly, always utilize it.
A beekeeping guide will broadly be based on the following key aspects:
Safety and best practices
Unlike most hobbies and commercial ventures, beekeeping is certainly a perilous one. Therefore, a guide should devote a substantial part to keeping you safe and protected from the bees. Though a sting is inevitable every once in a while, it should remain that way; once in a (long) while. This should include information on the protective gear you require and how to properly make use of them as well as maintain them.
About the bees
The guide should contain info on the different types of bees and their role in the colony, their behavior and characteristics, what the bees need and even the different species. Understanding the bee nature will prove to be quite useful when working around them and generally becoming sensitive to their requirements as a colony. This will ensure you get the most out of your bee colony.
Bee nice – maintenance tips
The bee colony always acts a unit and therefore if you fail to provide the ideal conditions for them to thrive, you will wake up to an empty hive. Though you may be keeping them, bees are not really ‘domesticated’ as with other farm animals – c’mon now, they attack you every time you visit the hive. The beekeeping guide should therefore include maintenance instructions and tips for you to ensure the bees don’t head for the hills as soon as they learn that you aren’t meeting your end of the deal. It also provides information on all the tools you need and a what-to-you-use-where-and-when section.
The beekeeping guide provides information on how and when to harvest the honey, handling of the combs and the hives, processing and packing of the honey and such general information as how to construct or purchase a hive, etc. A beekeeping guide will certainly ensure you are not only efficient but will go a long way in ensuring you get optimal results for your efforts and resources that you employ.
In establishing a business about beekeeping information must be made available especially if you are a beginner. Keeping bees at your own backyard has its own benefits and restrictions. Each State has its own laws with regards to beekeeping in residential populated areas. Therefore, if familiarization with the law is the first step for successful household beekeeping information must be given at the first start of the business.
If you are already engaged in beekeeping information with regards to dealers that sell bee equipment and supplies must be made available so that keeping bees at any part of the country is possible. Besides, beekeeping is being practiced all over the world and the value of honeybees pollination is important to the environment. It is worth billion dollars of agricultural fruits and vegetables. Indeed, if one of the precious ecological endeavors is beekeeping information must be disseminated at once to promote the industry.
Keeping bees to produce a pound of honey takes 10 pounds of extracted nectar from flowers within 4 miles around the colony. Beekeeping requires knowledge about the caste system of these hardworking insects: The Queen that maintains the colony population, the worker that does all the chores, and the drone (male bees) whose sole purpose is to mate with the virgin Queen. In order to be successful in beekeeping information like this must be known to analyze the sociological insights of the honeybees.
In keeping bees’ colony to a healthy state, a decision to replace the Queen is required if the need arises. Beekeeping should have a careful hive monitoring. If it manifests declined swarming with the Queen or the number of bee population is deteriorating, you can buy a Queen with more superior breeding. If a Queen replacement is needed in beekeeping information with regards to its suppliers are available from the local market.
Working on the beehive is the greatest challenge that beekeeping can offer. You must know the technique on keeping bees at bay while working on to extract honey and/or to replace the Queen. There are six tools that a beekeeper needs: smoker to calm the bees, veil for face protection, gloves to protect the hands, hive tools to separate frames, knife to open the cells of honey and extractor for getting the honey from the cells.
Honey is not the only reason why keeping bees as a business is profitable. Beeswax or “bees sweat” is naturally produced in the bee hive that can be collected for sale. Bee pollen and candles too are salable products from beekeeping.
Keeping bees is much harder now than it was before. Bees that roam naturally in the wild are susceptible to Varroa Mites. These parasites feed on bodily fluids of adult, pupal and larval honey bees and its present in almost all continents except Australia. Though beekeeping industry is recovering due to resistance selection breeding, more effort has yet to be done.
In the United States, various organizations and associations of bee keepers were founded to address the problems of beekeeping. From procuring supplies, implementing laws, marketing the products and assisting disease control-conventions are held in every States for the benefits of their members. So if you are ready to enter the industry of beekeeping information with regards to its membership must be sought to guide you all the way in starting a good, viable and successful business on keeping bees near your home.
A sting is probably one of the first lessons that you will learn as soon as you show as much as an interest in beekeeping. This in no way means that all the material and courses regarding beekeeping will only (or largely) be centered around how you can avoid getting stung while beekeeping. While you are ready trying to build a stingless-reputation, one more reputation concurrently builds up: a honey-less reputation!
It is human nature to prioritize safety before many other needs, actually except food only, safety takes precedence. While looking for info on beekeeping, learn as much as possible about all the other aspects that will ensure you tap into some honey at the end of the day – and not have a fat face.
Beekeeping, also known as apiculture is simply the maintenance of bee colonies with an intention of obtaining or harvesting honey either for sale or for personal consumption. Beekeeping is however not a simple activity that can be just handled as any other hobby. It is just as demanding as most other farming activities that involve breeding. You will certainly be required to put in the hours and the resources so as to obtain the best possible results, or else! For this one, you must get a little more detailed in your preparation. That could mean investing in related literature, watching the videos, sign up to the experts’ coaching programs, and anything that will help to stomp out the ignoramus part of you.
Here are some basics:
First off, you can either domesticate the bees and have your own colonies or do some wild harvesting of honey from the existing wild colonies. This is commonly done in parts of Australia, South America, Asia and Africa and basically involves invading and many times destroying the physical locations where the bees reside and getting the honey. This is rather cumbersome as compared to domesticating the bees in beehives that can be easily accessed, cleaned and maintained to ensure long term supply of honey. Unless there are a couple of bee colonies that have established their own hives, going off on a wild hunt for honey can be quite a hurdle. I suggest you be your own man/woman and establish your own colony.
Proper protective gear is a must! You may compromise on anything else but this. Make sure you don protective suit every time you are working with the bees. These are easily available these days in a wide variety to suit just about all the possible preferences. Bees will normally attack your head region so this should be given priority. However a sting is a sting, and it will hurt anywhere it is delivered and bees will go all out to protect their territory.
And because beekeeping is also a dangerous activity, you are required to get all the necessary approvals or licenses from your local so as to avoid any legal problems as well as endangering your own family as well as the community.