Idiot beekeeper

Beekeeping & Apiculture Forum

Help Support Beekeeping & Apiculture Forum:


New Bee
Aug 21, 2009
Reaction score
Hive Type
Number of Hives
This is a story of NOT how to do things.
A friends father anounced last year he was going to keep bees- doing it on the cheap which is fair enough- making his own hives. I asked if he was following any plans, no he said 'the bees did'nt mind'- he made something about half as big again as a national out of pallets. Frames inside were just a top bar with some wax melted along them.I did'nt supply him with bees as I had doubts.

I expected swarms from him this year and knew he did'nt have any spare boxes (I had told him) I even had a bait hive in a nearby garden. Last Friday I had a phone call from the man two swarms in neighbours trees- he asked if I could help. When I got there the bees were not very happy- one colony stuck in a plastic bucket with a lid on, the other still in the tree. I got one into a hive and they settled down quickly. The others I got into a nuc box but they left (I still don't know if they were one swarm originally- I don't think he knew either). He had'nt been going through them regularly- just looking down through the combs.

I warned him they could swarm again, so when I went back later in the evening to collect the swarms, he was inspecting one of the swarmed hives and a great comb he pulled out collapsed in front of him (no wires) very angry bees again.

He was exhausted and tired, he and his wife could'nt understand why they had rung so many people and no-one could help. She remarked that 'everyone encourages you to keep bees, but no one wants to look after them!' thats your job- your'e the beekeeper I thought.

Things have settled down, and my elderly beekeeping friend who went back on saturday to collect another swarm, suggested he go and buy his honey from tescos. It seems harsh, but when people won't listen and insist on doing everything their own way and then end up in trouble, you start to lose patience. On the plus side we have two strong colonies as a result. I'm sure others have similar stories.


Latest posts