For new beekeepers
There is so much information about beekeeping out there that it's easy to get lost in it all, but beekeeping doesn't have to be as complicated as some would have you believe. In our opinion, keeping bees is actually easier than keeping tropical fish! Are there challenges? Sure there are, but education and guidance will help you overcome those. Bees were never meant to be micro-managed by humans, heavily medicated or bombarded with toxic chemicals! There are better ways. Virtually everything that you need to know about natural beekeeping is available right here on our site.
We believe that the best thing one can do to advance quickly and succeed in beekeeping is to read, read, read! Unfortunately, many people don't like to read, so they try to do without it. Studying the basics after it's painfully obvious that something has gone wrong is not the way to go about keeping healthy hives, yet time and time again this is what we see people do.
In contrast, we believe that the worst thing that a newbeek can do is go to an online beekeeping forum and start asking questions. Not only are the answers likely to be given by people who aren't qualified to give them, but also, one is likely to expose his or her self to so many conflicting opinions and so much arguing, that discouraging confusion will be the result.
The first thing you have to do is decide which basic method of beekeeping you want to practice. There are several different hive designs available to you and each style has it's own basic management techniques. There is certainly no shortage of opinions out there about which are best. After studying different styles and techniques, choose what makes the most sense to you and then proceed. If you decide to practice natural beekeeping with something other than a Langstroth hive, don't let anyone tell you that your decision to use something unconventional is a mistake or that it won't work. Those sorts of statements stem only from ignorance and should be disregarded.
Now, although we want you to read, read, read...don't try to absorb too much at once, which is something that happens quite frequently. If you're looking to get started in beekeeping, all you really have to know right now is the following:
- What type of hive(s) and feeder(s) you'll be using and who you'll be purchasing your bees from. Ideally, you'll want to have your bees ordered a couple of months before warm Spring weather arrives.
- How to get your hive(s) and feeder(s) prepped and set up in a good location.
- How to install the bees into the hive(s) and keep the feeder(s) filled.
- How to remove the queen cage(s) from the hive(s) after 3-4 days.
This is all you really have to have knowledge of in order to get started in beekeeping. The more you learn the better, of course, but the point is that if you have these four things figured out and are confident that you can handle what needs to be done to the point of removing the queen cages, then you are ready to get started. You will have plenty of time to do more studying after your bee colonies are established. Worrying about varroa mites and other pests, summer heat, harvesting honey, overwintering your bees, etc., before your hives are even set up, is pointless and counterproductive.
The popularity of Warré hives is growing in leaps and bounds. People are finding out that their bees thrive in these hives like they have not seen before. We have no doubt that you can succeed at Warré beekeeping if that is what you choose to do, and we promise that we'll be here to help! If you want to get started with Warré beekeeping, you can learn enough to get started by studying and learning the information that is contained in these sections of our website:
Modified Warré Hives
FAQ (probably the most important section to read!)
You also want to be sure to watch the following videos (in order):
How to set up a Warré hive
Preparing for bee installation
Warré hive bee installation
Modified hive bee installation
How and why to use a smoker
How to inspect a modified Warré hive
There are a total of 11 videos in the online album. Watch all of them if you have the time. They will help you to further understand the different hives that we offer, and to decide which is best for you.
If you want to try to populate your new hive with a swarm, be sure to review these two sections:
Please Contact us anytime with your questions or comments. Good luck to you!