How to keep bees and develop your interest further. Beekeeping A Beginner’s Guide, written by David Cramp.

From time to time I am asked to review new beekeeping books. This book “Beekeeping A Beginner’s Guide” favours a traditional approach to beekeeping.

The author, David Cramp, views beekeeping in the same role as that of a livestock farmer, whilst a natural beekeeper like me sees the honey bee as a wild insect; this means our approach to beekeeping is different.

The book is a brief guide to a wide range of beekeeping topics and an overview of the traditionalist beekeeper’s practices throughout the year. For the natural beekeeper it’s pleasing to read about encouraging all beekeepers to leave adequate honey within the hives for the bees to successfully winter on, and a short section on monitoring bee behaviour outside of the hive.

References to Varroa treatment as “a must” or your colony will be completely overwhelmed and destroyed do not follow my own experiences: I have colonies in Warre bee hives in their third year expanding successfully with zero Varroa treatment!

Like traditional beekeepers the natural beekeeper needs to be aware of bee diseases as summarised within the book.

The author, David Cramp, throughout the book encourages new beekeepers to secure the advice of an experienced beekeeper when unsure. This was one of the reasons why our Natural Beekeeping Helpline was created to provide a friendly ear and natural beekeeping advice for those wishing to follow a bee guardian route.

In summary, not a book for the natural beekeeper. However, it does provide a brief overview of the scope of traditional beekeeping methods for those readers wishing to know more before deciding on their own beekeeping methodology, traditional or natural beekeeping.

Best regards, David

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