What Beekeeping for Beginners Entails

If you are considering taking up beekeeping as a hobby or maybe even as a small business in your backyard, you are going to need to know what beekeeping for beginners entails. This is why I’m posting this guide for you that will give you helpful steps to show you how you can start beekeeping and producing your very own honey.

 

Beekeeping for Beginners Entails Knowing Something About it

This is a hobby that is actually gaining a lot of attention today. The reason for this is because there is a growing demand for honey because of the health benefits people are learning about and also because it helps to pollinate our plants in our area.

Beekeeping for beginners entails knowing that it also can be a pretty reliable source of supplemental income for the hobbyist or small business owner because you can sell this wonderful honey that your bees make for you and believe it or not, the costs related to taking care of the bees and producing the honey is pretty minimal which means even on a tight budget you can do this.

Beekeeping for beginners entails also realizing that honey consumption is well over 300 million pounds each year just in the US alone and because it’s so popular, you shouldn’t have any problems selling fresh and natural honey to people in your small corner of the world.

However, beekeeping for beginners entails a lot of hard work and decision making. This means that you should decide before hand whether you just want to do it for a hobby and reap the honey for yourself only, or do you want to try to turn it into a lucrative small business?

Beekeeping for Beginners Entails Knowing the Benefits of Beekeeping

There are a vast variety of benefits one can reap from beekeeping and here is a list of just a few of them to think about:

 

  • It’s an activity anyone can do because it requires very little land to set it up on.
  • Even though it can be hard work at times, it does however, during the season, the time is minimal which means that it won’t interfere with your normal work or your daily activities.
  • Investment is minimal and only requires that you have a hive or hives, bee suit and a few simple beekeeping tools.
  • Bees will add value to your other plants that flower or produce fruits, nuts and/or vegetables because of pollination.
  • Beekeeping can generate an income and the amount is up to you.
  • Honey is portable so you can take it anywhere to sell it or give away as gifts.
  • Nearly every product from the honey to the bees wax can be consumed, used as dietary supplements and even used for medicinal purposes.
  • The value of honey is stable and rarely goes down in price which helps make a small business very stable.

If you are truly interested in beekeeping then here are the things you need to know about what beekeeping for beginners entails.

Buy Your Bees

When it comes to what beekeeping for beginners entails, you might think it’s a little odd to order your bees before you have any of your other items you need to set up shop. However, it’s very important that you have your bees at the right time of the year. This is because most of the places that sell bees won’t have any left by the time springtime is here. So, the best time of the year is usually around January to order your bees because then they’ll be shipped or ready for picking up in April or May.

When first starting, the best place for you to get started with bees is by contacting your local beekeeping association, they’ll be able to tell you where you can buy your bees and a lot more information can be gotten from them as well.

Pick the Right Hive System

Beekeeping for beginners entails choosing the right hive or hives for your bees. When it comes to beekeeping, there are two main hive systems that most beekeepers use. One system is called the Langstroth hive system and it’s made up of boxes that are stacked on top of one another. Each box has frames in them where your bees will build their honeycomb and store the honey. You can pull these boxes out just like drawers in order to gain access to your bees, harvest the honey, and to do maintenance. It also allows you to add boxes vertically whenever the hive might need more room.

The other hive system is called the Top Bar system. This is where the frames for the hive are put in horizontally and not vertically. The bees will make their honeycomb without a foundation when you use this system. In this system, every bar will contain honeycomb and honey and then are pulled out from the top of the hive.

You are going to have to decide which is best for you, however, most people work with the Langstroth hive system.

Protective Gear

Be prepared because beekeeping for beginners entails realizing that getting stung is just part of beekeeping. However, if you have the right protective gear you will get stung less and much less severely. Here is a list of gear you should have on hand as a beekeeper.

 

  • Veil – This is going to protect your face and head from being stung by bees and it will become one of the most important pieces of protective gear you’ll own.
  • Gloves – Most beginners will always start off wearing gloves. To save money, you can even use those rubber dish washing gloves. However, the more experienced at beekeeping many times will go without wearing gloves, they can be cumbersome.
  • Bee Suit – This is gear that will protect your whole body from stings. But, generally just full length clothes can be enough. If you want to save on money, try and just get a bee suit jacket instead of the jacket and the pants.

 

Beekeeping Tools

To ensure successful beekeeping, beekeeping for beginners entails knowing which tools are the most important to have on hand in order to work with your bees and the hive. Here is a list of essential beekeeping tools you should have:

 

  • Smoker – This is very important because a smoker will calm the bees before you check them for anything or try and harvest their honey.
  • Hive Tool – This is a small crowbar like took that is used to help you break the boxes apart that make your hive because they will often stick together because of the beeswax.
  • Scraper – This is a tool that will help you remove the buildup of beeswax that might be on the components of your hive.
  • Uncapping Scratcher – This is what is going to help you to uncap the honeycomb in order to release the honey.
  • Honey Extractor – This is the tool that takes the honey from your frames and extracts it from them. You’ll find there are different types and sizes but they all work on the same basic principle. The extractor you choose should be sized according to the amount of hives you have to work with.

 

Even though there is a lot more that needs to be known about beekeeping as a beginner, these are the things you need to know before you set up your hive or hives in your backyard. It’s important to note that you should talk with your neighbors first before starting a hobby like this as well as your local government officials to see if there are any laws against beekeeping or if there are any permits you might need.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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