Bee Keeper in Vermont

Bee Keeping Start Up

We ourselves are in the process of our first bee keeping experience. As we progress we will compile information for the raising of bees, and maintaining bees.

Bee keeping can be both for fun and profit requiring an initial investment, and some dedicated time. After talking to several bee keepers we find that many grow an attachment to their bees.

We hope to build upon bee keeping knowledge of those in the know and from our own experiences as beginners.

Due to the decline of the existing bee population and invasive bees it is becoming a highly concerning problem. Not only to bee keepers but fruit farm growers and vegetable growers without bees to pollinate severe consequences will manifest themselves.

We initially became interested in bees as we have an extensive backyard apple farm as well as a well established garden and noticed the lack of bees to pollinate our crops. After our last enormous apple blossom with little yield we realized it was the lack of bee pollination causing the problem. Upon closer examination we realized that we had pollination primarily form bumble bees and other non honey type bees. Rarely did we note a honey bee. This is what prompted us to explore the viability of raising our own honey bee farm to aid in pollination of our crops.

Much information on the internet is useful but in some cases can be misleading. We, were lucky to attend a local seminar put on by a local coop that gathered a few established bee keeper speakers to explain the workings of bee keeping. We are ever so glad we did, and recommend anyone interested in bee keeping to seek out their local established bee keepers to get relevant information for their local area. This is the best way to learn first hand the seriousness of the bee population and the dangers associated with loosing them.
The most concerning problem that all bee keepers face is the cross breeding and contamination of bees from other hives, which in many cases can cause the loss of entire hives. In the state of Vermont where we reside the remedy for infected bees is burning. That includes the bees and hives as well, so not only have you lost the bees you have lost any monetary investment and time you have put into establishing your hives.
For commercial bee farms this as you can imagine can be devastating not only to the bees but to the keeper and his business.
In some cases a single bee from a contaminated hive or imported, to start a new hive, could contaminate a hive that could create this scenario.

February 2017
We will continually update this page as we progress in the installation of our hive, and hopefully share our learning and mistakes to others that may desire or consider doing the same.

As we are located in the state of Vermont, most information that is expressed here pertains to cold climate conditions. Having said that we found that we needed not one but essentially 2 of what s called breeder boxes. One for the bees to reside in, and one, for them to store their winter honey to survive. On top of that will go half size boxes that are for accumulation of honey for your use should you desire. Hives can be purchase on line, or locally, we recommend find the right source and stick with that as some vary in size and construction and will not interchange.
Things that need to be considered are location, preferably good sun and nearby source of water, neighbors, other animals, and your local ordnances. Caution to those like myself if you’re allergic to bee stings. Complete protective clothing well taped closed with no possible openings.

At this point we have found a local bee keeper willing to sell us a complete active hive with two brooder boxes and established bee colony. This will save us the wait time on a new hive. Looks like month of May for delivery of the hive. This will give us adequate time to obtain other tools needed and half hive boxes. Next week we will be meeting with the supplier and should have more information then.

Exploring Vermont Statutes online “Vermont Statutes on Line” we find that all bee hives must be registered. Registrations take place between Jul 1 – Jun 30 with a $10 fee per hive per year.


Bee Keeper in Vermont Blog

The Golden Spoons

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