Honeybees working on combs

Natural beehives: The beehives in the wild

Beekeeping has evolved in terms of purpose over the years. Ancient beekeepers may have reared bees for reasons best known to them. History attributes honey production to old keepers. While it may be difficult to know their true intentions, modern beekeepers are usually advised to look beyond the benefits of honey production when rearing bees. They encourage rearing to benefit nature and also to allow the bees to enjoy their best life ever. Natural beekeeping methods are what many beekeepers with the environmentalist point of view are now advocating. To enjoy and carry out natural beekeeping properly, many people study the wild to learn about bees and recreating a beehive farm that is almost identical to bees' natural world. The first step is to look into common types of natural beehives. Here are they:

Hollow hive

The hollow hive is a common type of beehive. Here, this natural honey bee hive is built in the hollow tree that is well elevated to prevent predators from reaching it. The hollow chosen to build the hive is usually deep, allowing the bees to expand their reach enormously as the colony grows. The natural way of expansion is sideways.

Aerial beehives

The aerial beehive is typical to the genera Micrapis and Megapis bee types. The aerial beehives are quite similar to the hollow types. Bee colonies build the aerial beehive type of extended tree limbs. With their wax, they coat the spot where they choose to live and develop their hive.

Underground hive

The underground beehive is yet another natural beehive. The bumblebees usually build their hives in the tunnel and holes in the ground. The hive is used for just a year before the bees relocate to another location under the queen's command.

Creating a natural environment for bees

Natural beekeeping methods entail keeping bees in the most natural way possible. It starts from the type of hive a beekeeper chooses to rear the bees. When choosing a beehive, using a hive similar to the pattern of beehives in the wild is an ideal choice aimed at natural beekeeping. Beehives such as the top bar, the Langstroth hive, and other horizontal designs are excellent. Such types of hives are designed to allow bees to grow sideways and roam freely, similar to the wild. Another aspect of natural beekeeping is to avoid disturbing and manipulating the condition of the bees. Here are useful tips:
  • Limit the frequency of checking up on the bees
  • Let them feed more on flowers. Sugar mixtures should be limited to when it's absolutely necessary
  • Do not use artificial honeycombs

The takeaway

Natural honey bee hives can be imitated by purchasing modern types that offer similar structures or even making homemade types. What is more is that when it comes to natural beekeeping methods, ensure to read well on how bees thrive in the wild and use that knowledge for your bees. Overall, do not be strict with your bees. When some artificial methods are necessary, use them.

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