Getting Started

Reasons to NOT get bees

  • You will get stung.
  • Expense (see below for an example budget).
  • Requires a time commitment, especially when the weather is good.
  • Physical - hive boxes can be very heavy.
  • Messy - you will have honey, wax, and propolis on your gloves, tools, etc.
  • Migratory hives - commercial beekeepers may park their hives near yours, and their bees may try to attack your hives.
  • Disappointment - despite best, most knowledgeable efforts, hive sometimes perish.

Reasons to get bees

There are many great reasons to consider becoming a beekeeper, including:

  • Pollination
  • Help honeybees
  • Honey
  • Sustainability
  • Interesting hobby
  • Connect with the environment
  • Challenging
  • Make some new friends, meet some new people. Beekeepers are a good bunch.
  • Bragging rights - it’s a pretty cool hobby

Becoming a Beekeeper

If you wish to have bees on your property, but are not sure you want to tend them yourself, please reach out to GBA and see if anyone in the club would like to manage a hive for you. 

If you'd like to work with bees, but cannot or do not wish to have hives in your yard, the Adopt A Hive program might be the ticket. Please contact Steve Mink at stevejmink@gmail.com for more information.

So, you want to become a beekeeper:

  • Bees are typically delivered in the spring, usually in March or April. If you are getting a “package”, you must install it as soon as you get it, so your hive needs to be ready, you have the required equipment (particularly a suit!), and your brain has some basic information.
  • If you’re getting a “nuc”, you have a little more wiggle room on the hive, but you will still need a suit and tools. Best to install the nuc ASAP.

Next Steps

Recommendations

  • Start with 2 hives.
  • Be prepared. Have your hives and gear ready for receiving your first bees.
  • Join GBA.
  • GBA wants to support you. Reach out to the club and to members for help and advice. Members will be willing to come to check out your hives with you.

Click here to view or download a PDF of "Getting Started".

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