Tips for Natural Beekeeping
- Keep Bees for the Bees’ sake and value them as pollinators first (apicentric), and honey producers second.
- Fill your garden with nectar and pollen-rich plants (particularly plants that flower over February/March and winter), and don’t use chemicals.
- Allow bees to overwinter on their own honey instead of feeding a sugar substitute.
- Harvest excess honey in spring, summer and early autumn, only if there is sufficient nectar flow.
- Maintain the nest scent and warmth of the hive by opening it only if really needed.
- Allow the Bees to reproduce naturally by swarming.
- Don’t use chemical treatments for disease and pest control.
- Don’t cull the drones.
- Choose hives that replicate natural honeybee hives, such as Kenyan Top Bar, Warré, Golden and Dome Hives.
- Avoid smoking the bees as this can cause undue stress.
It’s not just about the honey
Rather than a focus on ‘taking from’ the bees, natural beekeeping is about ‘giving back.’
The Kenyan Top Bar Hive
Beekeeping Naturally promotes the Kenyan Top Bar Hive as one of the most effective natural bee hives for backyard and small-scale Beekeepers (Bee-carers).
The disappearance of the bees
Frightening but true – we no longer have enough honeybees to pollinate all our crops.
Wild honeybees are nearly extinct in the UK, Germany & Northern China, and from 1985-2005 there was a 53 per cent decline in UK managed honeybee colony numbers.