“I’m a beekeeper.” A typical line I use when people ask me what my hobbies are. This is usually followed by wide eyes and the question of why I chose such a hobby. I even received looks of either disgust from others who feared bees.
Regardless, I am always happy to share my experiences and passion for these creatures.
More so, my goal is to express just how important they truly are. I decided to share my experiences with honeybees and in the process inspire others.
With knowledge other people may be inclined to become beekeepers themselves or perhaps they could just gain a better understanding of these great pollinators.
Why honeybees are important
Honeybees are widely misunderstood. If you talk to just a handful of people on the street, most of them are not able to distinguish between a wasp and a honeybee. Everyone assumes bees will sting you and cause problems. However, if people took the time to learn about them, they’d see why honeybees are important.
The great pollinators.
Aside from the honey they produce, honeybees are great pollinators. Plants rely on honeybees to reproduce and spread seeds that make the foods we love. Roughly 80% of our food is pollinated by honeybees. Without them we wouldn’t survive. With that being said, education is important.
What some people may not know is that honey bees are considered a super organism. Through beekeeping, I have discovered honeybees are capable of doing other things that most bugs cannot.
Aside from everyone working together, one worker honey bee in her lifetime will go through every single task that’s needed. She will do everything.
Also, all the worker honey bees work together to make sure the hive survives in the winter. Whereas, a lot of other insects all die in the late fall and early winter.
The beginning of beekeeping for me.
Aside from the environmental aspect of it, beekeeping has intrigued me. I had seen educational videos about beekeepers tending to their “mini-livestock” of insects they protect. I saw an educational video about a beekeeper and thought to myself what an interesting hobby.
However, what caught my eye is the structure involved with how honeybees actually work. Everything I had read about them baffled my brain.
While most people are still trying to figure out their own lives, these little bugs already have their lives put together and have figured it all out. After awhile it felt like their lives were far more structured than our own.
What’s even more spellbinding is all the work in the beehive is accomplished in the dark through smells and touch. Everyone has a job to do and they work hard at it.
Becoming a beekeeper was a goal of mine for a couple of years. There were many things I learned through error, for example, I didn’t realize there’s a specified time of the year to buy bees.
It took me two years to officially make the hobby a reality and it was so worth the wait. These little creatures have taught me so much, not only about their lives but also about my own. I’m able to realize that regardless of how tough I think my life is, it could be harder.
People complain about the work they have to do on a daily bases, however, a worker honeybee does not. She has a task to do and is forced to do it in order to survive.
Also, another reason why I chose beekeeping is because there are a lot of factors effecting the lives of honeybees. Aside from the destruction humans cause, another bug called the varroa mite is causing havoc on the honeybee’s existence as well.
Why others should become a beekeeper and what’s involved
When I first started I had an interest in honey bees, now I am what my friends and family call “obsessed”. Beekeeping can be quite addicting through knowledge of how they work and what goes on inside a hive.
The honey they produce is delectable and far better tasting than any honey bought in a store. The good feeling of participating in this world to ensure their success is very rewarding.
You develop an affection for them and a strong desire to want to help them even more.
Everyone always asks if I’ve ever been stung. Sure I have, however, just like anything in this world you have to take the good with the bad. Each time a bee stung me, I was invading their territory.
It’s a great experience.
A few bee stings is nothing compared to the experience, skills and developed admiration I now have for these insects.
I’ve also been asked how much it takes to become a beekeeper. There are some additional costs in protecting yourself with a bee suit or jacket. There are other required tools necessary as well as the costs for the bees and hive boxes.
Every new beekeeper should always check with their local city ordinances to make sure the desired location isn’t breaking any laws. And most importantly, inspired beekeepers should educate themselves on honey bees. Yes, a lot is involved with beekeeping. However, all of it is worth it.
The point is to save the bees.
I firmly believe if more people had a better understanding and were educated about honeybees, they wouldn’t fear them so much. They would realize how docile honeybees truly are.
More knowledge would spark curiosity to not only learn more but observe as well. Beekeeping is rewarding and at times even relaxing.
Observing a hive on a nice summer day can be peaceful once you’ve overcome the initial fear of stings or bug crushing.
Honeybees have always been there to help out man kind, whether it’s helping farmers with their fields, or the sweet honey most of us use in our daily foods, to the delicious vegetables we eat and even the pretty flowers we enjoy.
All of these things we take for granted on a daily basis. If anything we should make an effort to help them in their success.
23 comments on “The Beginning of Beekeeping-Why it’s so important”
Carl MatthewsAugust 26, 2018 at 10:25 pm
Hey Randi! You are amazing
RandiAugust 31, 2018 at 2:08 am
Thank you, Carl!
Russ CarpenterFebruary 12, 2019 at 4:26 pm
I agree it is extremely important to save the honeybee. I remember them being around a lot more when I was a kid. Thank you for doing your part to spread the word about how important they are. Randi you rock!
Russ CarpenterFebruary 12, 2019 at 4:28 pm
I agree the honeybee is extremely important that we have to take care of them and try to get them to come back to their former glory. I remember them being around so much when I was a kid. Thanks for spreading the word. Randi you rock.
RandiFebruary 14, 2019 at 5:51 am
Thank you Russ! Hopefully more people will realize how important they are and have the same mindset as well. I can’t imagine life without them.
DammyFebruary 14, 2019 at 6:23 am
Beekeeping is an hobby you don’t See people getting into everyday although most people are uncontrollably scared of bees but reading this article has showed me that we don’t t always have to be scared of this little fellas we might at some point take up the job of housing and giving them shelters. Interest of beekeeping shouldn’t be something scary after all we just want to keep them safe and most people lack understanding about this creatures which might be the reason why they don’t want to associate with it but with good understanding, we will learn that they are not as harmful as they seem. Nice work from the admin for putting this write up together couldn’t have been better. Good job
RandiFebruary 15, 2019 at 7:50 pm
Thank you! Aside from beekeeping serving as a favorite hobby of mine, my overall goal is to make people aware of how valuable these creatures are. And so fascinating too. Thank you for your response!
Aweda OlakunleFebruary 14, 2019 at 6:31 am
Bees are very important and a great source of income where i stay. My uncle is a honey beekeeper and he always emphasizes on what a wonderful venture he is into. Apart from the money making aspect of bee keeping, bees are also worthy role models because of their amazing structure, how they have an esthablished society something we humans are still struggling with and how they go about their activities eagerly regardless of being lowest or highest in their hierachy. They are truly an amazing insects.
RandiFebruary 15, 2019 at 7:52 pm
I couldn’t agree more! Bees have a fascinating social structure which is what attracted me to them in the first place. It’s refreshing to see other people who can relate. Thank you for your response!
julienne murekateteFebruary 14, 2019 at 6:52 am
Thank you for sharing with us this great review on bee keeping.Bee keeping was my grandpa hobby and I can say that he loved it so much.It is very amazing to find honey without going out to buy it in supermarket .It is not easy at all because if You don’t care about them they can run away.I was surprised by how bees can communicate when it comes to leaving the place.
Bee keeping is a nice hobby.
RandiFebruary 16, 2019 at 6:43 am
Nothing compares to honey from the hive. It makes honey from the store taste like syrup. I’m thrilled to hear that your grandpa loved beekeeping too! Honeybees are fascinating creatures!
mzakaponFebruary 14, 2019 at 7:00 am
I could not but agree with you that bee and honey is very important for our life. Since it is proved scientifically that honey has many elements for various disease of human life, bees are great contributor for us. This is really a rare hobby as a bee keeper but I am happy that few people really think about this. I am going to share this information with others. Thanks for contributing and writing this informative article.
RandiFebruary 16, 2019 at 6:38 am
Thank you and a greatly appreciate you sharing the information with others. With what is hurting the honeybees, it would be nice to make people aware of how wonderful they really are. Thank you for your reply!
enrique vanegasFebruary 14, 2019 at 7:02 am
Thank you for sharing ¨The Beginning of Beekeeping –Why It´s so important¨ I´m more interested to know the ¨Why It´s so important¨ aspect of your article and in that regard I´d like your opinion of a book called ¨Honeybee Democracy¨by Dr. Thomas Seeley.I read a review indicating this is a fascinating book and you will not think about bees the same again after reading it. Dr. Seeley is a scientist from Cornell University. It deals with how the bees work together, mentioned in your article, and make decisions as a colony, very little about beekeeping. Dr. Seeley is considered the foremost authority on the swarming behavior of honeybees. What makes his book special is that he doesn´t write as a scientist.Would you recommend it?
RandiFebruary 16, 2019 at 6:47 am
Thank you for your response! I haven’t read that particular book. I have read other books that go into details about bees but not that one, yet. I will have to read it next!
KenFebruary 17, 2019 at 6:30 am
Great article. For the longest time I thought bees were bees and to know that wasps and honeybees are totally different insects is very insightful. I heard that if a bee (not sure if that includes wasps and honeybees) , that they die after they have stung. Makes me think that if a honeybee will die if they sting you that their instinct is to Not sting and just move on in their busy life, as you so well describe them. Based on that, if I come into a situation say from hiking or even say helping tend to my backyard and come upon a colony of bees (assuming they are honeybees as not sure if wasp also colonize), what is your advice on how to act or do? From your article it seems they are a docile creatures but in the long run I just don’t want to get stung. Just curious if you have advice on the best course of action?
Thanks! And keep up the great articles and videos……hope there will be more. 🙂
RandiFebruary 17, 2019 at 6:43 pm
Thank you! To answer your question, when it comes to honeybees it’s best to not swat at them. Honeybees really are docile especially when they are away from their hive. If a honeybee is flying around you, more than likely she is just checking something out. There’s probably no intent on stinging you. Unless you are invading their hive, for the most part they are pretty gentle. Thank you for your response!
MonicaAugust 28, 2019 at 2:35 am
I have been considering learning more and becoming a beekeeper so I found your article very interesting. I have a friend who has bees and is encouraging me to start. I have four acres and am told it would be a perfect location. I really love the honey from my friend. The store bought kind just does not compare. However, I must admit, getting stung is a big deterrent to me!
RandiAugust 29, 2019 at 6:22 pm
Hello Monica! I am so stoked that you are interested in becoming a beekeeper yourself! Getting stung, however inevitable, really is a minor con compared to all of the pros and rewarding experiences that beekeeping has to offer! I appreciate your response! Thank you!
AnusuyaAugust 28, 2019 at 3:01 am
It is a really wonderful blog post. it reflects your deep love and passion for bees.
I had a honey hive in our backward when I was growing up in India.
I was very scared of them. But my grandma loves them, We always use to get honey from the bees every year from our backyard and I use to save the wax.
Once traveling to Madison, I met an old woman and she gave e her business card which had beehives. She described the importance of bees for the world and also the decrease of the queen bee is alarming. That is why her husband is dedicated to helping society and cultivating bees.
We ignore sometimes our little helpers but they are crucial for our existence.
Thank you for a wonderful post.
RandiAugust 29, 2019 at 6:21 pm
Hello! You are so right, we do ignore our little helpers and they do place a huge role in our existence. Which is why I am trying to spread the word about them. I’m glad that you see it too! Thank you for your response!
ChuckAugust 28, 2019 at 1:27 pm
Thank you for this article and talking about how you got into beekeeping. I have a great respect for bees which began when I listen to a podcast where they explain how smart bees could be. I switched from being someone who would be scared of a bee into someone who if I saw any bees flying around I would just calm down and send them good energy.
I am curious about some things and I don’t mean to offend you with any of these questions. But I wonder because you mentioned that you are helping the bees to be around so they can pollinate and everything. But how did they do that when they are confined to a small cage? Or am I misunderstanding it and do they have a bigger area where they are confined to?
I guess I am picturing all these bees being stuck in a cage of a couple cubic feet but I don’t know do they get a bigger area or do you let them go free and they come home willingly?
RandiAugust 28, 2019 at 10:55 pm
Hello Chuck! You know, that’s my goal is to make people aware of how cool these bugs really are! And how cool is it that you were able to overcome your fear of them! To answer your question, honeybees live inside hive boxes but there’s an opening along the bottom that they can fly in and out of as they please. They will travel 2 to 3 miles to forage for food too. Excellent question! Thank you for replying!