Patrick Mann wrote:There are a bunch of different natural bee-keeping approaches.
David Livingston wrote:
Thirdly I would recognise that a swarm is better than a nuc and a nuc is better than a package
Fourthly Does the size of your harvest matter ? Is this about the bees or the honey?
David Livingston wrote:I hear what you are saying Tom but I worry about being prescriptive as there are lots of good stuff out there. Two of the books you suggest - honey bee democracy and "at the hive entrance" are great but are more descriptive of bee behavior rather than how to keep bees.
Should we differentiate between such books and those that talk about a type of hive such as Abbé Warrés' , "Apiculture pour tous", David Heafs " Natural Beekeeping with the Warré Hive" ( frankly a much better read ) or the Bare Foot Beekeeper by Phil Chandler ( Top bar Hives ). The latter two are about encouraging people not only to keep bees but in such a way to put the bee at the" centre" of bee keeping not honey production . What should be included in reading and what does not matter will depend on where you live what sort of hives you will have and who you have found to mentor you - if anyone . For instance I am not aware of anyone writing a Book about Oscar Perones hives although something may be available in Spanish
Who would be foolish enough to keep bees without reading up on the subject first ? ............. ok .ok I accept there are fools out there but they are quite obvious if you know what I mean .
What did you think of my other suggestions ?
David Livingston wrote:
obtains 10%+ of income from Bee products and teaching- Honey , Wax products ( candles , polish etc ) medical products ( pollen, propolis, tictures, bee stings ) Hives ( with and without bees ) splits and swarms .
Anyone any other ideas about what I am suggesting ?
David Dodge wrote:I agree. I am treatment-free but I use Langs to maximize honey production. Hopefully that doesn't make me un-natural. I'd like to experiment with other hive styles like top bars or Perones but I'm not sold on Warre hives for my situation. I'd like to see a badge focus on bee basics - build a hive or at least some components like tops and bases/stands/huts, make splits and increase your apiary, make and successfully use a swarm trap, research and plant locally adapted forage for pollen and nectar, and for brown belt level maybe queen rearing.
Dane Larsen wrote:Perones or Holzer style gums might be allowed exceptions to that rule. I also suspect that PEP[aul] would prefer natural propagation, therefore no queen rearing, no splits, no shook swarms, but concentrating on recovery of swarms from one's own apiary, as well as baiting local survivor stock.
Dane Larsen wrote:I can chase down the swarms from my four hives easily, but for 100?