how to start beekeeping

If all you know about Bee’s is they have a stinger in one end and you’ve always wondered how they milk the bees for honey and get it in those plastic bear shaped containers – you’ve come to the right place.  Be forewarned bee keeping is fun, challenging, interesting and provides never ending opportunity’s to learn and be humbled.  You’ll also meet great people who are willing to share what they’ve learned and laugh about their bee keeping journey as well as lend a hand.

First order of business is answering the most asked question of all – by non-beekeepers – Do you get stung ? Yes. The follow up question being does it hurt ? Yes. Or as Bill Turnbull, author of “Confessions of a Bad Beekeeper: What Not to Do When Keeping Bees (with Apologies to My Own),” says

” Yes, it does [hurt being stung], but that’s where the fun is. If bee didn’t sting, it would be a bit like keeping flies. If there’s no risk, there can be no adventure. And they only sting for a purpose; if they’re feeling threatened. Usually. I must confess I’ve suffered my fair share of stings. But on most occasions I deserved it.”

So where to begin ? Attend a Bee Keepers meeting, meet some bee keepers … ask questions … observe a hive inspection … read a book (two entertaining books about people in your shoes- wanting to start Beekeeping – and how they did it are: Bill Turnbull, “Confessions of a Bad Beekeeper: What Not to Do When Keeping Bees (with Apologies to My Own) and Honeybee: Lessons from an Accidental Beekeeper, by C. Marina Marchese.

Next key – from How To Start Beekeeping “Get among the bees – this is the litmus test. You will either be filled with joy, wonder, and amazement (you have the heart of a beekeeper), or fear and dread (find another hobby!).”