When You Might Not Need a Beekeeping Guide
Beekeeping is a time-honored method of maintaining a real or artificial environment where bees can thrive, mainly for the production of honey for sale or personal consumption. A lot of beekeeping basics are based on common sense, and you may or may not need to purchase a beekeeping guide depending on how much basic knowledge you have about the basics of bee behavior and storage methods. There is an element of danger involved in the maintenance of a beehive, so be sure that you know how to protect yourself from stings and aggressive behavior from bees. Beekeeping, initially, also involves a significant investment in time and equipment. The last thing you would want is to lose the hive and the bees. To ensure that it thrives, you need to know how to set up, operate, and care for the equipment and your bees. If you’ve grown up around beekeepers and witnessed their work firsthand, you may not need a beekeeping guide because your basic skills and foreknowledge are enough to get started. Or, if you have friends who share the hobby, you can learn from them instead. You can also refer to this web site, which is full of information related to beekeeping and setting up the equipment, basic procedures, maintenance, and how to gather the honey and produce a full crop. This information is reliable and free, so you may not need a beekeeping guide if you take the time to browse the helpful tips and articles contained within this web site.
Your initial investment in a hive, some bees, and the equipment, should cost between $200 and $400. The best time to start is in the spring. Your bees will need some shade if you live in a hot environment. Also, worker bees tend to fly up when they exit the hive, so bear this in mind when choosing a location around your yard to set up your bee hive. Most people recommend starting with one hive in the first season, and expanding to two or more later on. The bees will need a good source of water, so a birdbath or small pond should be placed near the vicinity of your hives. Throughout the season, especially when your bees are actively gathering nectar, you should inspect your hive on a regular basis to check its health, activity and productivity. You will want to make sure that the queen is alive and well, and that she is laying eggs for the production of the next generation. At the beginning and end of each season, antibiotics should be applied to the colony or colonies to protect from bacterial infections and other health problems that could cause the bees, larvae and pupae to die. If you live in an area that contains bears or raccoons, barbed wire or hot-wire can be installed to protect your operations. One of the reasons many people choose not to keep bees for a hobby is the threat of being stung. Some things you can do to lessen the risk of being stung are to wear protective gear, and make sure it is on properly and zipped up all the way. Turn on your smokers and puff the smoke into the bottom and top of your hive. The smoke calms the bees. When removing frames from your enclosure, be sure to get a good grip on them so you don’t accidentally drop them and cause disturbances. If possible, work with your bees during nice, sunny weather while the bees are out looking for nectar. Try not to swat the bees, as this will cause pheromones to be released, warning the other bees, which can cause aggressive behavior in the rest of the hive. You should expect to be occasionally stung, and over time, most people will develop a tolerance for the bee venom contained within the stingers. If you are stung, immediately scrape the stinger out with your fingernail, and apply the smoker to the area of your body that has been stung. This will help to mask the pheromone response of the sting, helping the other bees to remain calm. It is helpful to purchase an emergency sting kit which contains antibiotics, especially if you have guests around who may have an allergic reaction if they are stung. Beekeeping can be a rewarding hobby if you follow the helpful information found on this site.