Honey bees (genus Apis) are believed to have originated in Southeast Asia (1). New species of Apis are still being described from that region today. Four species that naturally inhabit large areas of the world include the Western honey bee (Apis mellifera) from Europe and Africa, and the Eastern honey bee (Apis cerana), the giant honey bee (Apis dor-sata), and the dwarf honey bee (Apis florea) from Southeast Asia. Only A. mellifera and A. cerana are cavity nesting species and thus have been collected by humans and successfully transferred and managed in artificial domiciles or hives.

It is likely that the first beekeepers were honey hunters or honey gathers, as depicted in a Paleolithic rock painting found in eastern Spain dating from around 7000 b.c. (2). There, gatherers collected honey by robbing wild bee nests. Honey hunting is still widely practiced in Asia to obtain honey from A. dorsata and to a lesser extent from A. florea nests. It can be postulated that an early stage in the development of beekeeping involved the cutting of a log section enclosing a bee colony and transporting the log to the dwelling of the gatherer. There the log and bees would provide a convenient source of honey and brood for periodic robbing by the new owner. The use of log sections as beehives persists in some African regions. The first hives made by humans probably were composed of clay, straw, or tree bark. In the Middle East, honey bees are still kept in clay pottery, mud, and straw hives. Some of these hive materials were used some 6000 years ago.

The advent of what is considered the "modern era" of beekeeping came about with the discovery of movable-frame beehives. The person generally credited with publicizing the significance of the "bee space" was Lorenzo L. Langstroth who, in 1851, discovered that bees would refrain from building wax connections between neighboring combs, or combs and the side of the beehive, if the space separating them was approximately 3/8 in. (3). This seemingly modest discovery led directly to the evolution of hives that had fully removable frames that enclose and support the beeswax combs. These frames could be manipulated easily by the beekeeper and removed for the purpose of examining the brood or extracting honey. The latter part of the nineteenth century saw the development of an amazing array of inventions based on this technology, including machines for removing wax (uncapping) and extracting honey from the new removable frames. Eventually, the Langstroth hive became established as the standard-size beehive that remains largely unchanged to the present day.

How To Become A Bee Keeping Pro

How To Become A Bee Keeping Pro

Companies that have beekeeping stuff deal with all the equipment that is required for this business, like attire for bee keeping which is essential from head to torso, full body suits and just head gear. Along with this equipment they also sell journals and books on beekeeping to help people to understand this field better. Some of the better known beekeeping companies have been in the business for more than a hundred years.

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