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Busting Beekeeping Myths

Busting Beekeeping Myths

In beekeeping there are so many myths. It can be hard to know what’s true and what’s false. Well, let us help you know what myths about beekeeping are a bust!

Myth #1 - All Honeybees in the Hive Sting

The word bee is commonly used when people see anything flying that’s black/yellow and that could sting. This can give honeybees a bad reputation. Most people think that all bees in the hive will instantly sting. Sure, some of them sting, but not every bee in the hive. There are male bees, called drone bees, that will not sting because they do not have stingers, which makes it impossible for them to sting. In addition, not all female honeybees sting either. Honeybees have to be provoked and pretty angry to sting you. Honeybees will not go out of their way to sting you, unless they feel like their hive is threatened. That is why it’s wise to use a smoker to calm them and also wear protective gear. So, this myth of “All Honeybees Stings” is a bust.

Myth #2 - Honeybees Need Lots of Land to Thrive

When people think about beekeeping, they usually think of rolling hills with lots of land and vegetation to keep the bees “buzzy”. Well, when keeping bees, you usually do not need a lot of room. For example, we have had a few customers who have done well in New York City when keeping bees. These customers keep bees on their balconies, or even on their roofs, and the hives are thriving. With beekeeping there are no limitations on how much room bees need. So, if you live in a city and want to keep bees or in an area where land is limited, you can still keep bees. You just might need to get a little creative. Therefore, this myth too is busted!

Myth #3 – You can get Lyme Disease from Honeybees

There are some people who think that honeybees can carry Lyme disease. The reason why is that there are other insects like ticks who carry them, so some people think that bees can as well. Well, this myth is completely false. Honeybees have actually been linked to helping people who suffer with Lyme disease. In addition, there have been multiple studies showing that people cannot get Lyme disease from honeybees. So, there is no need to worry about that. Busted!

Myth #4 - You’re a Bad Beekeeper Because your Hive Swarmed

There are some beekeepers out there that say if your hive swarmed it means you did something wrong, and you are a bad beekeeper. Well, thats not completely true. There are some types of bees that have higher swarming tendencies, like Carniolans. This means you can “bee” the best beekeeper and do everything right and they still just swarm. There are some things that you can watch for, but overall, when the hive and queen decide that they are swarming, usually there is not much you can do. It’s just part of their nature. So bust that bad beekeeper thinking!

Myth #5 - All Bees Work Really Hard Inside the Hive

Most people believe that all bees inside the hive are all hard workers. Well, this is both true and untrue at the same time. The female worker bees are definitely hard workers. They are the ones who care for the larva, queen, drones, and keep the hive in order. Also, they are the ones who bring pollen and nectar into the hive. They are also the ones who make the honey. The queen works all day by laying eggs and keeping the hive in order with the hormones she gives off. However, the male drone’s job is to just mate with the queen once and then they die. Yikes! The other ones who do not mate usually just lounge around all day eating honey. Hmm…sound like anyone you know? Therefore, drone bees are not the ones who live up to the “busy as a bee” saying, and the “All Bees Work Hard” myth is busted too.  

 

So, what other myths have you heard about or experienced that aren’t true? Let us know in the comments.      

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