I can’t think of any outdoor activity more enjoyable than observing and enjoying the royal and industrious honey bee. I cannot think that everybody is not keeping bees. Those who have combined the honorable ranks of being a beekeeper do this for many diverse reasons. Some maintain bees so they could harvest their own homegrown honey. Other folks maintain bees to pollinate their fruit trees, crops, and gardens. Many keep bees because they’ve heard of the decline in honey bee colonies and want to do their part in keeping our honey bees alive and well. There are several different reasons, but deep down all beekeepers enjoy keeping bees because it is merely enjoyable!
A common thread among first-time beekeepers is they now have time and a place to keep bees. Many states their dad or grandpa retained a couple of hives and they were constantly fascinated with bees and might love to try it for themselves. If you have ever contemplated keeping honey bees, then good for you. It is so important that we know the essential and significant role honey bees perform in our world. Honey bees pollinate 1/3 of all of the food that we consume. Apples, almonds, melons, as well as the plants that cattle eat to produce our beef and milk tie to the pollination of the honey bee. And this is only scratching the surface.
Nearly everyone can keep bees, from the young to the older, from the University entomologist to the stay at home mother. The white house now has a hive. It’s true, you can be a beekeeper. All you will need is a beehive, a few protective clothing, a few tools, and a few beers. You do not need to understand everything about bees to begin. After all, most colonies are pretty forgiving and expertise is still the ideal teacher.
Let me give you a couple of hints in the checklist below so you can turn into a successful beekeeper:
1) LEARN ABOUT BEEKEEPING through articles like this one, or take a class. Beekeeping courses are springing up all around the country. See your local library and increase your comprehension before you maintain bees.
2) DECIDE HOW MANY HIVES you wish to begin with. Of course, you can start with just one if you’ve got a small budget. But most everybody would recommend beginning with 2-3 hives. Why? If you only begin with you, and it expires or flies off, then you don’t have any bees. However, with two or more hives you can always equalize your hives by sharing frames of brood or bees. If you eliminate a queen or a whole hive, you may produce another hive referred to as a split, or you may even move a frame of eggs over from the strong hive into a queenless hive and allow the colony with no queen raise its own queen. You’ll also have the ability to harvest more products from multiple hives such as pollen, honey, royal jelly, propolis, and wax. As soon as you put in your suit and light your smoker, it really does not take much longer to inspect numerous hives.
3) PURCHASE YOUR BEES AND EQUIPMENT at the Ideal time of the year. You need to purchase your equipment between September through February. You may buy your hives later than February, but you may discover a longer wait period as it is the busy season for creation. Purchase your protective clothing and tools now as well. Buy Your bees between November and March. You can try to see if packages of bees are left after March, and it’s possible, but most providers are sold out by March. If you live close enough, then you can pick up your bees in local apiaries.
OLD EQUIPMENT VS. NEW EQUIPMENT
Many men and women try to spare a few bucks and climb up in someone’s old barn attic to reestablish a few abandoned beekeeping equipment. This may work, but the risk of disease could make you lose your colony. Some diseases can live and stay dormant in older boxes for nearly 80 years. Why not begin with new equipment.
DO NOT WAIT UNTIL APRIL OR MAY TO MAKE YOUR PURCHASES. It could be too late. Every year so many men and women call in May and June when it’s too late.
4) CHOOSE YOUR LOCATION to place your hives. Depending on where you live you may choose to see whether your community has some restrictions to keeping hives. This is usually only true if you reside in a city or city. However, most city ordinances permit for beekeeping, but you may check.
If you find you cannot keep bees in which you reside, remember there are lots of places in the nation where people would be glad that you maintain your bees on their property. Just remember not to put your bees too far from where you live or even the long-distance commute could keep you from appreciating your bees as frequently as you’d like. Talk to a safe bee removal dallas expert here.
Hives do well in partial shade, but due to various pests such as small hive beetle, ants, and rodents, it can help to keep hives in full sun. However, when this isn’t possible, some shade is fine.
WHICH DIRECTION TO FACE THE HIVE? Hives can actually face any direction. Generally, facing the East or Southeast allows for early morning sunlight to acquire the hive out functioning early. Another consideration is that the bees’ flight route. Consider what could be from the hive’s flight route as they leave the hive. Don’t put them close to your clothesline or next to a walkway. They will stain your clothing and bulge to people if they are too near ordinary walkways.
5) WHAT ABOUT YOUR NEIGHBOURS? There are lots of steps you can take so that your bees are enjoyed by your neighbors. If your neighbors are close, keep lots of water around your bees to prevent them from looking for water in your neighbor’s kiddy pool. Birdbaths create good bee waterers. If your neighbors really are real close, you might consider giving your neighbors a jar of honey each year so they can see first hand how candy bees are.
Try not to work your bees as soon as your neighbors have an outing or outdoor celebration. Always maintain a gentle line of bees.
6) JOIN A LOCAL BEE CLUB AND STATE ORGANIZATION. Most areas have state associations that comprise of smaller beekeeping clubs across the state. These are great opportunities to learn, build up your beekeeping confidence, and meet other beekeepers. I realize that many beekeepers are very independent or are so busy we do not have time to join a club. But lately, a local park district is known as a pest control business to kill a large hive in a tree. The hive was full of honey, so once the colony was dead and filled with poison, nearby hives quickly robbed the poisoned honey and took it back into local beekeepers’ hives, killing those hives as an outcome. Our club immediately became involved by educating how bad this was, and how beekeepers are more than willing to eliminate hives. And our club has been instrumental in helping you beekeeper receive compensation for his dead hives from the pest control company. Visit Fort Worth bee and wasp removal and get a free quote!
Our state institution (Illinois) recently lobbied and had bottling honey removed from the supervision of the general health department. Now beekeepers are free to bottle and market their own honey without the very same limitations imposed upon restaurants. This was difficult work and took the”muscle” of a state institution of beekeepers to get the attention of politicians.
7) PROTECTIVE CLOTHING & TOOLS. There are basically 3 levels of protective clothing: A complete suite with an integrated hood which covers each part of your body, a jacket with an integrated hood that protects you from the waist upward, and a veil and hat that merely protects your face and head. Rarely do I have to wear a suit. Mostly I’ve learned to work with my bees using a hat and veil, and sometimes no protective clothing in any way.
If you’re really worried about being stung, start with a complete suit and gloves. As you build your confidence you can slowly reduce the quantity of protective clothing until you are wearing a hat and veil and no gloves.
What about gloves? I respect those who have to use gloves. However, I think if you keep the properly hardened bees, which you need to, you need to develop your skills to the point at which you do not wear gloves. I do not wear gloves and enjoy working with my bees with my hands. My bees seem to honor that and that I kill fewer bees.
TOOLS. Two tools are essential to keep bees. A hive tool and also a smoker. Don’t get caught up in specially designed smokers and hive tools. An inexpensive smoker works as well, and generally as long as a costly one.
Smoker gas may be anything you have convenient that produces non-toxic trendy smoke, such as clean cotton rags, burlap, some types of twine, pine needles, dry grass clippings, mulch, tree bark, and cardboard. Every one of these fuels burns differently, so find the one which you prefer. I have a comprehensive lesson about using your smoker correctly. Click Here
There are numerous types of hive tools however, the conventional hive tool will probably be all you actually need. I favor using a stainless steel stair tool because, if you drop it from the grass and can’t find it until next spring, it will still look the same. A regular steel stair instrument will rust quickly, even when painted. Stainless steel hive tools are tough to discover, but we market them. Just click here
Like any hobby, there’s a ton of different gadgets to buy and a few are enjoyable and fun, and helpful. But your basic tools are the smoker and hive tool.
These are a few of the basics you need to know to start keeping bees in 6 or 7 months. So now is the time to start learning, buying your equipment and bees, and determining where you are. Perhaps you are searching for something to occupy your time through the winter. Now you can study beekeeping and be prepared when spring arrives. Maybe you need a hobby, something to keep your brain alert, or perhaps you would gain from joining a bunch of people and interacting with other folks. Beekeeping is just perfect.