When and Where You Should Get Your Bees
There are different types of bees that appear depending on the flower and season. If you plant
to start beekeeping, you should get to know the different species first to save time and energy. You will get the
most benefits and harvest more if you time the process properly. The behavior and functions of bees will change
depending on the demands of the environment so you should seek out your sources carefully. Here are some tips.
Bee Roles and Functions
There are different roles and functions among the worker bees, drones and the queen. In some seasons, spring
most especially, bees are more populous and start to gather pollen and nectar to be brought back to the colony to
feed growing larva. Some bees begin work from late spring up to early summer. There are others that prefer to
collect up to early fall. Before the environment freezes during the winter months, bees will gather all their
resources. During the cold season, bees will hibernate and wait for their wake up signal to go and work again once
spring comes in.
It is vital to know this cycle so that you can safely get bees for beekeeping. The safest time would be while
the bees are hibernating. You can transfer hives and colonies from early fall up to winter. Some beekeepers can get
bees during the peak season when their populations are very high. This way, you can get more and fill your
artificial hives quickly. You can take advantage of swarming season, when bees create more colonies than their
present hive can accommodate.
During swarming season, bees will move out of the hive and attempt to look for more ideal sites to occupy. The bees
will usually remain in the swarming site from a few days up to several weeks until they find a suitable home. The
advantage about swarming sites is that worker bees are not that aggressive and will not try so much to protect the
spot, since it is not their current hive. Professionals actually visit swarming sites and relocate the bees in a
The most common places where you can find bees would be hollow trees (usually gum), caves and rock cavities. You
can chance upon open aerial sites and swarming sites in gardens, fields and even the street. Majority of
individuals begin beekeeping by getting a whole swarm or getting bees from a reputable beekeeper. You will find
that it is so much easier to buy package bees from a good beekeeper compared to removing a hive from nests in
trees. Wild bees can be potentially dangerous, aggressive, produce poorly or be infested with mites. Experts can
offer you good strains resulting to bees that produce more honey, having a good temperament, having stable winter
traits and resistant to disease.
Now, you can also choose to ship bees, although the season tends to be short and supplies can be limited. You
can search the internet for different breeders and species and place your order during winter. Provide the delivery
date that suits your hive the most. Package bees should ideally arrive 6 to 10 weeks before the nectar flow starts.
For beginners, they can schedule the arrival anywhere between the start of April until 2 weeks later. The hive
should already be assembled, installed with foundation and set up properly before the bees come.
Installing the Bees
Check the shipment once it arrives and make sure that the queen is healthy. The bees should be placed in a cool
dark room not more than 70 degrees F if the climate is hot when they arrive. Feed the bees continuously until they
are engorged to minimize aggression. Install the bees during late afternoon so that you minimize the chances of
drifting. Suspend the queen cage and place her carefully in the hive.
Complete the set up and leave the colony for 1 week except to feed with sugar syrup if needed. Feed the bees
until nectar flow starts.
Getting a Swarm
If you want to hive a swarm, contact the fire or police department and tell them that you would like to keep the
bees. Prepare the needed equipment and transfer the bees from their current location to your artificial hive. You
will need smokers to drive them out and move into their new location. You can choose to cut out the entire branch
or post if the hive is located there.