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The Ultimate Guide To Beekeeping

The Ultimate Guide To Beekeeping


1. Key takeaways

  • The earliest evidence of collecting honey dates back to 15,000 years ago, whereas efforts to domesticate or manage bees only began 4,500 years ago.

  • Hives function according to a strict hierarchical structure. A queen bee, drone bees and worker bees all have different roles.

    • Queen bees can lay up to half a million eggs in their lifetime, which could be as long as three to five years.

    • Drone bees do not work, do not forage for pollen and cannot collect nectar. They have no other known function than to mate with and fertilise new queens.

    • Worker bees may only live for about six weeks.

  • The British Beekeepers Association represents the interests of over 25,000 hobbyist beekeepers and the three billion plus honey bees for which they care.

  • If bees don’t have sufficient food supplies, you can make food for your colony.

  • Bee colonies can be vulnerable to pests and diseases including Varroa mites, small Hive Beetles, European Foulbrood and Colony Collapse Disorder – a relatively under-researched phenomenon when worker bees from a honey bee colony disappear for no apparent reason.

  • The average hive produces 25lbs of honey, which in a good season can increase up to 60lbs of honey.