For new beekeepers

Are you new to beekeeping? Yes? That's wonderful! Or maybe you are just new to thinking about starting beekeeping, which is even better because that means you probably haven't already made the mistake of purchasing a lot of equipment and supplies that you'll later decide you don't need or want. Many of our customers are beginners or folks who are getting back into beekeeping after some years away from it. We won't sell you equipment and then just abandon you. It's our job to help you with all of your beekeeping needs, both before and after the sale.

There is so much information about beekeeping out there that it's easy to get lost in it all, but keeping bees 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. Sure, there are challenges, but education and guidance will help you to overcome them. Bees were never meant to be micro-managed by humans, heavily medicated or bombarded with toxic chemicals. There are better ways, and everything that you need to know about natural beekeeping with Warré hives 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 obvious that something has gone wrong is not the way to go about keeping healthy hives, yet time and time again that's what we see people do.

In contrast, we believe 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 one is also 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 learning a bit about different styles and techniques, choose what makes the most sense to you and then proceed. If you decide to practice natural beekeeping with a Warré hive, don't let anyone tell you that your decision to use something less conventional (than a Langstroth hive) 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 hives and feeders prepped and set up in a good location.
  • How to install the bees into the hives and keep the feeders filled.
  • How to remove the queen cage(s) from the hive(s) after 3-4 days.

This really is all you have to know 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 generally not helpful.

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:

What Are Honeybees
Beekeeping Terminology
Warré Hive Design
Modified Warré Hives
Warré Hive Management
Hive Placement
FAQ (probably the most important section to read!)

You also want to be sure to watch the following videos (in order):

NOTE: Clicking on any of the links below will take you to our Magix Online video album, which offers high resolution video and sound for the best viewing experience. However, because slower internet connections and/or certain devices may make it impossible to view our videos from the Magix album, all eleven of our videos are also available on You Tube. Try to use the links below first, but if you are unable to view the videos that way, simply come back and click this link to go to our You Tube channel.

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:

FreeBees
Hiving a Swarm

Please contact us anytime with your questions or comments. Good luck to you!