Guide to Beekeeping: Queen’s Rules

Follow these tips to raise healthy, productive queen bees.

| January 2018

The Backyard Beekeeeper: An Absolute Beginner's Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden (Quarry Press, 2018), by Kim Flottum gives expert advice to beekeepers of all skill levels, including those just beginning to participate in this increasingly popular hobby. The following excerpt is from Chapter 5, "Rules of Modern Beekeeping."

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Queen's Rules

1) Queens must be raised in luxury.

2) Queens must be well mated before being sold or used.

3) Queens must be productive.

Queen's Rule Number 1: Queens Must Be Raised in Luxury

There's an old saying: We too often get the queen we can, rather than the queen we want. Getting the queen you want means finding a queen producer who provides queens of the quality you want, at the time and the price you want. Ideally, you will one day raise your own queens, suitable to your exact location, management style, and timetable. When those skills are acquired, this rule will no longer be needed. Still, a beekeeper should know enough about the process to ask good questions. So here are some of the basics of raising good queens, and what can go wrong in the process.

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