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Beginner's Guide to Beekeeping

Updated on December 20, 2016

Bees are necessary for a healthy ecosystem. They play a major role in pollination and improve the productivity of your garden. Many species of plants and animals are surviving because of these wonderful creatures. Beekeeping can be a fulfilling hobby. For many people beekeeping is a profitable business.


There is a huge demand for honey and its by-products. More than 300 million pounds of honey is consumed in the United States of America every year. Here are a few things that you need to remember before you venture into beekeeping.


There are thousands of species of bees. The first step in beekeeping is to choose the species suitable for your location. It is a good idea to consult other beekeepers in your area. You may buy the bees from a local beekeeper. A typical package of bees contains a queen and thousands of other bees. There are many reputed bee suppliers in the United States of America. It is advisable to start beekeeping during the spring season.


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The next step is to choose the right hive. Usually beehives are made of pine wood or cedar wood. Experts recommend cedar wood as it adds to the aroma of the honey. It is advisable to choose a hive that would need less maintenance. The hive should keep the bees comfortable. It should also be easy for you to harvest the honey.


Langstroth (ten-frame and eight-frame) and and top-bar beehives are popular among beekeepers. Before placing the bees in the hive, it is advisable to ensure that the frames are clean. It is important to cover the hive with a jacket during winter.

It is very important to choose the right location for beekeeping. Bees collect nectar from flowers. This nectar becomes honey in the hive. The beehive should be in an open area near a garden. The bees should be protected from pesticides and strong winds. Honey is usually harvested in the autumn.

It is advisable to protect yourself from bee stings while working with the bees. A veiled hat or helmet is a must. It is advisable to buy a full bee suit. It is a good idea to use a pair of latex dish-washing gloves. Beekeepers use a bee smoker to keep the insects calm while harvesting the honey.

It is not advisable to take up beekeeping if you or anyone in your family are highly allergic to bee stings. Beekeeping is a wonderful experience, but it needs your time and dedication. Learning about bees is a lifelong process. There are many good books on beekeeping. The above mentioned information will help you to make the right start.

Types of Bee Hives

Sl No
Bee Hive
Ten-Frame Langstroth Hive
Eight-Frame Landstroth Hive
Top-Bar Hive
Warré Hive

If we lose bees, we may be looking at losing apples and oranges. We may be looking at losing a great deal of other crops, as well, and other animals that depend on those crops.

— Annalee Newitz


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