I guess before we plunge into the content it might be best to say exactly what is planned.
The bees must make their own way in some form or the other. A paraphrase from a favorite movie of mine: “They have to pay something, don’t they?” Historically, not so very long ago, the bees paid their owner, if you can say you own bees. Honey bees as livestock could make the farmer a living at one time. Things have not gone well for the bees though and we are faced with difficult times. A sideliner beekeeper with a few dozen hives is faced with having too many expenses without enough income from the effort. And honey alone might be enough to pay the costs associated with maintaining and feeding the bees but is that the sum of the venture?
So the beekeeper, in my estimation, is faced with multiple challenges to both increase marketable products and reduce expenditures. Some ideas which come to mind are specialty products of raw, unfiltered honey, comb honey, wax, propolis, pollination services, queen sales, nucleus hive sales, and pollen. Cost cutting through sustainable methods by rearing queens in house, in house woodenware manufacturing, and making seasonable splits to maintain a steady supply of bees for use in multiple bee yards.
I hope to be able to speak to the many facets of sustainable beekeeping and the seasonal chores associated with maintaining healthy bees. I’d also like to be able to publish a seasonal calendar for use by others as a guide for their own beekeeping tasks.
And finally I’d like to somehow transmit to others the art of beekeeping as I have learned it thus far. It’s one thing to read the books and memorize the tasks, but learning to read and interpret the pulse of the colony by careful observation is more challenging. Utilizing all of the beekeeper’s senses to draw correct conclusions, assess, develop a plan, impliment, and evaluate the process based on observation and intuitive skills.
Lofty goals indeed.