How did you become a beekeeper?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by hankdog1, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. hankdog1

    hankdog1 New Member

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    I figure that we all have some sort of story of something that triggered us to take up a love for our girls. So i figure this post would apply to all the members of the forum and hopefully inspire more to become beekeepers.

    So anyways i'll be the first to lay my path out for you guys of how i came to be a 3rd generation beekeeper. My grandpa had bees all throughout the 80's and into the early 90's. He enlisted the help of my dad most of the time with the bees (2nd generation beekeeper) of course i must say my dad didn't find it as fun as me and my grandpa. I remember being just able to walk trying to help him out. As i got bigger i got more duties that is up until the early 90's when the mites wiped us out. Something about that bond with the bees and my grandpa never left me. I started to get back into bees many times when he was still around but put it on the backburner for lack of funds (in other words i discovered girls). It wasn't until after his passing and getting all his old equipment that i got back into it. Things have changed alot since me and my grandpa used to work the bees way back when but in the end it's something that brings me back to a simpler time in childhood. Just me and my grandpa.
     
  2. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    about 50 years ago I was living in a place where there wasn't much a goin' on (just right across the Blue Ridge mountain from hankdog1 at the very western edge of The Washington Plantation) and I was looking for a 4-H project. My father (quite the character himself) and I were riding down thru the very pretty town of Eleanor West Virginia and coming down the sidewalk pushing a wheel barrow with a beehive on board was the local beekeeper Frank (believe this or not??) Behealer. He wore no veil, no gloves and my interest was immediate in that I wanted to know how such a person could move a hive of stinging insect all the way across that little town without even a second thought to protecting himself against their stings.

    my father introduced me to Frank the next day and I became his apprentice for a year. Frank exclusively maintained German blackbees... so all the bees since that time have been an improvement.
     

  3. charmd2

    charmd2 New Member

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    I bought a little house in the country on 21 acres. Planted some fruit trees. Decided that I was going to start a beehive to pollinate them. Well. I now have more hives than fruit trees. :)
     
  4. Walt B

    Walt B New Member

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    A few years ago I began thinking it would be fascinating to have bees. Once we moved to a rural area, after a year and a half of reading about beekeeping and attending some beekeeping meetings, I got some bees...and, yes, they are fascinating.

    Walt
     
  5. brooksbeefarm

    brooksbeefarm New Member

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    My barber (Frank Waddel) use to talk about his bees when he cut my hair (he's gone now and so is alot of my hair) and loaned me a book to read. I had helped my dad and uncles rob bee trees along the river and they would talk about their grand parents that kept bees. The bees along the river were those german black bees and i couldn't figure why anyone would want to keep them :confused: . Frank told me the bees you buy weren't like that,( that was 1965) so i ordered some Midnight bees through Sears & Roebuck, so here i am with sixty hives. Jack
     
  6. beekeeperhelper

    beekeeperhelper New Member

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    Became a beekeeper's helper because I'm married to Walt B. Must say it's a lot more fun than I thought it would be.
     
  7. Bitty Bee

    Bitty Bee New Member

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    I wanted bees ever since I was little. (I don't really remember why.) Mama kept on telling me I was too little to have bees so after a while I lost interest.
    One day, years later, mama said that she found someone who could teach me how to keep bees. The first time we got in a beehive I fell in love with the critters all over again. Now we have 6 hives and a bee tree!
     
  8. larry tate

    larry tate New Member

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    Wife was doing wall paper at a friends house and she was telling him about the tendionitis (sp) in my elbow making my fishing and working miserable. After 3 cortozine shots he said bring him over here. Started stinging with his bees and thats been 9 years ago. Never hurt since and accumulated lots of hives.
     
  9. Bsweet

    Bsweet Member

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    Always had an intrest in Keeping but first and second wives were alergic to them.Finaly got rid of second and got bees to keep her away,LOL third wife helped her father when she was young, so had no problem when I wanted to start keeping in 2008. Jim
     
  10. rast

    rast New Member

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    I grew up down here in the orange groves with bees all around every spring. My grandfather had some at his house year round. I even had a large cluster fall from the gable peak of his house and hit me square on the top of the head when I was about 7 yrs. old. My aunt finally caught me and got them and my clothes off me. Fast forward. I had probably one of the last of a major migratory beekeeper's swarms (Iddee use to haul bees for him) take up residence here. I liked em, went over and bought some bees from Miksa and it's been uphill ever since.
     
  11. riverrat

    riverrat New Member

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    the doctor said I needed a hobby when I was working 80 hr weeks managing a machine shop. My stress level and blood pressure was off the charts. However I dont think he intended on my hobby to consist of 50 hives of bees
     
  12. cow pollinater

    cow pollinater New Member

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    My wife figured that she could cash in on my gardening habit and opened a farm stand. I as the gardener could not keep up with the demand so I decided that better pollination and honey sales were a good addition... After my wife decided that the rigors of placing the produced product on the side of the road with a for sale sign and walking away was to much labor on her part, I decided to expand the parts of her business that I had lots of time/money into and try to recoup my loss.
     
  13. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    I was given five hives, gloves and a veil by Mr. John Grochell when I was eight and been hooked ever since. They still amaze me to this day.
     
  14. hankdog1

    hankdog1 New Member

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    lol gotta love some of them stories and rat i know better then that i'd rather work 80 hr. weeks in a shop then playing with snakes like you do
     
  15. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Now, Now. There's nothing wrong with having a few snakes around. Here's my son and his "baby".


    [​IMG]

    Hopefully, I'll be a beekeeper one day. Baby Beek is trying to teach me, but she's got her hands full with that job.
     
  16. the kid

    the kid New Member

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    I when I was 3 years old one of the games we played was to catch honeybees and bumble bees, in our hands . now being 3 my hands were small , so you learn real fast how to make as big a cup as you can as not to get stung , and what a honey bee looks like . And not to try and catch yellow jackets . I always liked bees ,and my dad had bees before I was born , but not after .. I wanted a hive from about the age of 10 , but didn't live were hives could be .
    after I got married (68) the cost and no place for bees came into play ... got busted up in a car accident , 10 years of not being able to lift 5 pounds , after that we cared for my dad for a year , Then Bons dad got sick , 4 years of helping take care him ,,after he past away , my mom was up for care ( 6 years ) til sept 2005 .... November 2005 my kids told me " next spring we are getting some bee hives "",, This summer I told Bon that next year no bees , that I'm going to get rid of it all , because it takes to much time ( I go look at the hive before we go to work and as soon as I get home and out of the car ,,, any time they don't see me they know I'm watching the girls .. ) but she said that there is no way I'm getting rid of the girls . I did not know ,, Her and the kids had talked about this before , and the girls are here to stay .they all said that they have never seen me so relaxed as when I mess with or around the hives .. or no matter were I am and one of the girls come check out what I'm doing ,, I know its long winded but thats the story of the girls coming here to stay
     
  17. indypartridge

    indypartridge New Member

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    One year while homeschooling our youngest two daughters, we used a curriculum based on Laura Ingalls Wilder's "Little House" books. In Little House in the Big Woods is a chapter titled "Pa and the Bee Tree", so that meant we did a unit study on honey bees. As part of that, I took a day off work and we went to visit a beekeeper. The seed was planted...

    A few years later we moved to the country. My girls got horses. I got honey bees.
     
  18. jonnybee

    jonnybee New Member

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    I started working for Tim Wendell a very large honey producer (Around 3000 hives and about 1000 nukes) in my area at the age of 15. At the start i didnt really like it because i was getting stung so much but as i learned how to deal with bees the stinging became less and less of a problem. I love being out in the yards and working with bees. I am now 18 and am very interested in getting my own hives.
     
  19. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    I live in an old farm house with 2 barns. Bees moved into the wall of one of the barns, and were rather feisty. Every time you opened the overhead door, one would fly out and nail you. They had to go, but I could not bear to kill them. I started reading up on beekeeping, took a class, and over the winter, assembled a few hive boxes. Got ready to do the cut-out in spring... and found out the colony had died over the winter.

    So here I was with all this bee equipment and no bees. Luckily (for me, not him) a man I worked with kept bees and had developed severe allergies. He sold me one of his hives, cheap. That was the beginning.
     
  20. Tia

    Tia New Member

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    When I moved to NC and planted my vegetable garden, I found that I couldn't grow squash! It kept rotting on the vine. The extension office told me that the fruits weren't being pollinated, but that I could pollinate them myself by going outside early in the morning, breaking off a male flower and shaking it over the female flowers. I thought to myself, "Heck, this isn't my job; this is the bees' job." So I got myself a box of bees, and put it at the back of the property thinking that would be it. But once I looked inside the hive. . .WOW! These little girls are totally fascinating and the hobby of beekeeping is so Zen and so addictive!