Homesteading

Beekeeping for Beginners – Introduction

beekeeping for beginners

Beekeeping for Beginners is a small guide to beekeeping for people who want to get into beekeeping. but also a useful material for those who want to develop their general knowledge and learn some general notions of beekeeping.

Are you curious to know more about these little honey-producing creatures?

WHO CAN LEARN BEEKEEPING? ANYONE.

The first step in beekeeping for beginners is to learn all about bees. You need to learn about the three types of bees that are found inside a hive. The drones, the worker bees, and the Queen. Bees are highly specialized and a functional hive needs each of the members listed to perform their work, or the hive will not survive and thrive. They must work as a team and be willing to sacrifice themselves if necessary to keep the hive alive.

DIFFERENCE BETWEEN WORKING BEES – MALE (DRONE) AND QUEEN

beekeeping for beginners
Difference between the worker, queen and drone (from Encyclopaedia Britannica 2012)

Each hive will have a queen, the only one who can reproduce in the colony. She comes out of the hive in two situations: for the virgin queen to mate, and in some cases, an experienced queen, with a swarm. In mating flights, the queen locates a “drone gathering area” to mate with up to 80 drones before returning to the hive. She will store all these sperm for the rest of her life, which can last up to 5 or 6 years. The queen will lay all the eggs for the colony, “deciding” when she will lay the drones (unfertilized eggs) or the worker bees (fertilized eggs),

Working bees are sterile females that go in search of food, feeding the “little ones”, honey production and storage, wax production, cleaning, and defending the hive against intruders. Each worker bee will do a variety of things during its lifetime, which can last about 4-6 weeks during the active season. As they get older, their duties will become riskier because they need to venture away from the hive.

The only male bees in the colony are drones. Their sole purpose is to spread the genetics of the colony by mating with virgin queens from other colonies. Once mated, they die crowned as “successful bees.” Drummers who failed to mate will return to the hive to eat honey and pollen. When the mating season ends, the drones become a drain for resources inside the hive and are evacuated by the worker bees.

Beekeepers help bees by providing hives for them to live on, and bees produce honey for us humans. Beekeepers make hives for bees. They put frames inside them, made of wood and wire, panels covered with beeswax and embossed in the shape of a honeycomb. These frames give the bees a start to build their own honeycomb.

Beekeepers also make regular visits to hives to check for bees and honey. When they see that the honey is ripe, the beekeeper smokes the hive to calm the bees (because calm bees are less likely to sting). The beekeepers take only a few frames at a time, it is not wanted for the bees to be left without any honeycomb. By slicing the top of the wax (caps) on the honeycombs, beekeepers can get all the honey they need. Now the honey is ready to be packed in glass jars or Squeezy bottles and sent to stores for all of us to buy and enjoy.

Where can I locate my hive?

Here you only have to consider the bees. What will be more comfortable for you may not be the same for bees? And what do you think? You’re wasting your time.

TAKE INTO ACCOUNT THE FOLLOWING:

  • Regular sun
  • Close to the food resources that are, of course, the flowers.
  • Access to water (be careful, however, that the neighbor’s pool is not the closest source of water!)
  • Wind shelter
  • Protection from animals and pests

After assembling your hive, what are the regular tasks for a beekeeper?

Beekeepers help bees take care of themselves. It provides bees with a hive for shelter, medicine, and, if necessary, new queens. Without the help that beekeepers provide to bees, it must be emphasized that bees manage to take care, why most of the time, of their own needs quite well!

The beekeeper checks the hives regularly to make sure the bees are not having health problems as the queen lays enough eggs if the space provided is sufficient for the size of the colonies and others.

A special set of tools is used that makes working around bees easier and safer.

Why could you learn beekeeping? Because honey is wonderful! Have the opportunity to drink a few gallons of natural honey each year, or have you ever considered saving the planet by pollination? It would also be an excellent way to involve children directly with nature.

In the following days we will be publishing a full guide to beekeeping that will teach you everything you need to know from setting up your hives and the equipment required to how to collect honey. Future links will be posted here to make for a quick navigation.

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