It’s okay to be curious. Curiosity is the key to invention, the wick in the candle of learning. Heck, even bees are curious.
Studies show that scout bees exhibit novelty-seeking behaviors similar to humans in order to find food and housing. Scientists found that genes related to dopamine and glutamate signaling between neurons, which are involved in regulating novelty-seeking in humans, are deferentially expressed in scouting and non-scouting bees.
So make like a bee and get curious about beekeeping. Here are a few lists and links to get you started. Stay tuned to the Bee Public Facebook page for upcoming beekeeping classes.
Stuff you’ll need:
- Hive + hiveware (I wrote a little bit here about Indiana-area resources for beekeeping equipment.)
- Smoker (lighter/matches + stuff to burn)
- Hive tool
- Bee brush
- Entrance reducer
- Mouse guard
- Feeder + jar
First, you’ll need to decide where your hive will live.
A lot of our hives live on urban farms around Indianapolis, which is ideal for many reasons. The bees have a smorgasbord right outside their front door, and the crops benefit greatly from their pollination services. Keep in mind, though, that bees will travel 3-5 miles to find food. You can keep bees in your backyard or even on your roof if you have a sunny, 5 x 5 space. If possible, the entrance should face the south, so the sun wakes up the bees and they get busy foraging first thing in the morning. Consider your neighbors and make sure a water source is readily available for the bees. They need to drink, too!
Other ways to ready yourself: Read as many books as you can. Here are a few recommendations.
There’s an endless catalog of beekeeping how-to videos on YouTube. Go nuts. You should also attend Bee School or a local beekeeping meeting and get to know other beekeepers. Beekeepers LOVE to share! And stay tuned to Facebook and Twitter for Bee Public’s 2015 classes.
If you have a specific question, please feel free to email Kate at firstname.lastname@example.org.