Thursday, 2 September 2010

How much time does it take to look after a beehive?

It's a funny thing, the most commonly asked question about beekeeping is 'how much time does it take to look after a beehive'.

I was thinking about how much time I actually spend INSIDE a beehive compared to the 'beekeeping' I do without the bees. In other words beekeeping related tasks for the welfare of a beehive. This involves the maintenance cleaning, repairs, renewing frames, brood/super boxes, extracting honey, bottling, scrapping wax & propolis off equipment, painting, staining, sterilising wood, feeding, protecting the bees from wasps, mice, keeping the apiary site clean, cut and safe......

I realised that only 32% of my time is actually spent handling the bees, 68% of my time is spent in necessary affiliated tasks to maintain the health and prosperity of the colony. So with that in mind, I strongly suggest to all beekeepers to take advantage of this warm dry weather and get all your 2011 beekeeping activities in order now. Make up your brood & super frames now, otherwise you could be caught short when in the spring your bees expand quickly.

Renew all old/damaged hive parts, clean equipment well and store away in a dry place, wrapped well to keep mice and moths out! Its easy to think that now we have extracted all our honey the beekeeping year has come to a close-WRONG. We still need to get all our beekeeping equipment and sites in order now for 2011. I have a tick list of all equipment I have and what I need to buy, assemble etc. It will make your beekeeping spring of 2011 a really pleasant experience this way.

photo copyright 2010 ©-The Hive Honey Shop

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