Beekeeping is not for everyone. While it is a fun, exciting, educational, and potentially lucrative occupation, it also has its share of pitfalls. Some of these can be the very reason why many first timers or even veterans give up beekeeping. The most common of these reasons can be listed below in the following manner:
- Not knowing where to get your knowledge
- Not knowing what to do with your first bee colony
- Not knowing where to put your beehive
- Not knowing what kind of flowers bees need
- Not knowing how to handle a queen bee
- Not knowing how to keep the colony healthy
- Not knowing the price of honey or the exact extent of the demand for it
- Not knowing how to harvest the desired amount of honey
How To Fix These Problems
These are the most common problems that cause many beekeepers to give up this activity. However, there are solutions that can be found if you care to take the time. Here are some of the best ways to address and correct these pressing problems:
Not Knowing Where to Get Your Knowledge
This is a question that is easily addressed by simply going on to the web. You can order a beekeeping manual right from Amazon. There are also plenty of courses, physical and online, that can take to get more knowledge. Finally, you should certainly join a beekeeper’s association in your area.
Not Knowing What to Do with Your First Bee Colony
You can try to trap a swarm of wild bees to get your first colony. Unless you are very experienced, this is not an activity we would recommend. You are better off buying a colony from an experienced beekeeper or from a very well vetted and regarded source on the world wide web.
Not Knowing Where to Put Your Beehive
The place where you position your beehive needs to be near a source of fresh water. It needs to have plenty of sunlight and a good source of flowers for them to get their nectar from. Many beekeepers simply place the hive in their yard. This is fine if your yard is protected from vandals, nosy neighbors and animals, and other hazards.
Not Knowing What Kind of Flowers Bees Need
This is an aspect of beekeeping that can be very tricky. You need to know if the bees under your care are native to your area or imported from elsewhere. This is because bees tend to only visit and pollinate the flowers that they are used to. If you know that your bees come from Italy, make sure to have flowers from that area in your yard.
Not Knowing How to Handle a Queen Bee
You may not notice right away when a queen bee is dead or needs to be replaced. All of the activity at the front of the hive will go on as normal until one day all activity in the entire hive ceases. This is why you need to check the health of your queen on a daily basis. If she is dead or not producing eggs, the queen will need to be replaced.
Not Knowing How to Keep the Colony Healthy
European honey bees have been moved all around the world. As they move, they tend to encounter new diseases, predators, and parasites. Your job will be to make sure that they have the ability to withstand these issues so that they can thrive. You’ll have to do a great deal of reading and consulting with experts to be up to the task.
Not Knowing the Price of Honey or the Exact Extent of the Demand for It
If you are only raising bees for your own hobby, these won’t really be problems. But if you are raising money as a serious economic pursuit, you will need to know market prices, both local and global.
The price of honey will vary from locale to locale. Your best bet will be to log on to the web and check out local beekeeper’s association sites. This will be your best source of info on local market prices. You may also get valuable info on where to sell your honey globally.
Not Knowing How to Harvest the Desired Amount of Honey
You need to know when the nectar producing flowers that bees love are in bloom. You need to know how to keep your bees safe and warm in winter. All of these and other factors play a part in how much honey you will be able to harvest from your hive. This is a very important factor in knowing how much to take and how much to leave behind.
Benefits Of Being A Successful Beekeeper
It isn’t all just one issue after another. Being a beekeeper has plenty of upsides or else no one would engage in this pastime. Perhaps the main benefit is knowing that you are the one who has been responsible for keeping a population of bees alive and in a healthy, honey producing condition.
Bees are becoming more endangered each year. This means that it is up to people like you to keep them alive and producing honey. The fact that you have done your part to sustain the population of bees, as well as the supply of honey to the market, should be a source of major satisfaction.
There is also the fact that you have learned a great deal about nature. You have taken up a hobby that gets you out of doors and into communion with wild life. You have learned about the connections between things that form the key to how nature works. It’s a source of endless fascination and learning that you can tap into.