Traditionally honey was collected from the wild bees in the forests. Due to the popularity of the importance of honey in human health, it has necessitated in improvement of bee keeping to meet the demand.
In bee keeping, you only need to acquire a standard hive- the Langstroth hive or the Kenya top bar hive- both of which are already in the market. After acquiring your hive you can now get your bee stock which can be got from bee farmers who are rearing bees for commercial purposes.
For a starter as a bee keeper you only need to have the very important information before initializing the project. Bee keeping is not highly capital intensive comparing with other agricultural enterprises e.g. dairy cattle farming, crop farming and so on. Thus rearing of bees is for everyone especially the nature lovers.
Here are several tips on how you can properly rear and manage bees. Bee keeping in the long run will earn you a reasonable income while also connecting you with the wonders of nature. The following tips are very crucial on the productivity and survival of your swarm.
Some Useful Bee Farming Tips:
- Keep bees where there are lots of flowers all season, or provide supplemental feeding
Bees thrive on good forage. On the other hand they get sick, die when in poor forage. The essence of the flowers is to provide the bees with nectar and pollen grains to aid in manufacture of quality honey. In absence of flower you could supplement this with sugar syrup and pollen supplement when appropriate.
- Water availability.
While siting your apiary it is of importance to ensure there is a water source nearby. The distance should not exceed 3km. Water is very essential for the survival of bees.
- Give the bees a warm room.
Researchers and entomologists have proved that honey bees evolved in the tropics. With that in mind you have to ensure the environment the apiary is sited has optimum temperatures to provide warmth to your swarm. Keep the bees in tight boxes with good sun exposure. Ensure there are honey combs always available as fuel for keeping the cluster warm.
- Suppress the parasites and pests.
The most common parasites that you should worry about are the mites, ants, wax moth and the honey badger. These parasites have been a menace in the bee keeping sector for a long time. Effective way to eliminate the parasites is by suspending your hives and treating the bee-hive poles with chemicals to prevent the ants from reaching the hive.
- Avoid man made synthetic pesticides.
Many of the pesticides and insecticides have high toxicity levels to bees which can harm the whole swarm and cause their death.
To conclude, of certainty to you is that if you follow these simple tips on bee keeping it will help you rear your bees healthy and sustainably to get their very sweet product- honey. As people are becoming more conscious on environmental conservation, bee keeping is environment friendly has minimal carbon footprint comparing with other agricultural activities.