Set up for spring
After a long, cold winter spent huddled inside, everyone is looking forward to spring – bees included. For your hives, spring is a time of intense activity. Egg-laying, brood-raising, and nectar-gathering all start to ramp up after being almost non-existent in winter.
Tips for a Bee Friendly Garden
When we hear about bees most of us think of honeybees (Apis mellifera) but there are many more bees around us.
More than just a hobby
Many Kiwi beekeepers start out as hobbyists, with one or two hives in a back garden or on a rural property, then make the jump to selling honey and beekeeping full time.
The trouble with tutin
Honey seems so natural and wholesome that it’s difficult to imagine it causing harm. But if your honey is contaminated with another natural substance – tutin – it can be toxic to humans, causing nausea, vomiting, convulsions, and even death.
Not too sunny, not too windy, just right
For beginner beekeepers, beehive positioning may not seem that important. Many newbies simply pop their brand new hive in a flat spot, without considering how temperature, wind exposure, damp, and even direction might affect their bees.
Preparation, placement, patience – safe beekeeping practices
Beekeeping involves working with a large number of unpredictable living things. So of course, there are risks and dangers.
But if you follow safe beekeeping guidelines, you should be able to minimise the risk to you, your family, your neighbours, and your bees. It’s about being well-prepared, thinking about the placement of your hives, and – most importantly – being calm and patient when you work with bees.
Spring of swarms – how to safely capture a bee swarm.
Expert advice from Ecrotek – the gear, methods and tips you need to safely capture and relocate a swarm of bees.
Two hives are better than one
Many hobby beekeepers start with one hive. It’s easy to see why: a single hive is less of an investment in terms of money, it takes up less space in a small garden, and it seems easier to manage. But starting with two hives – or more – is often a better idea.
When you first start beekeeping, you’ll probably be able to ID the queen – but anything beyond that might be a struggle. Bee society is made up of distinctly different types of bee, each with its own role in the hive.