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Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Adding to the library!

I’ve added some books to my bee library, at this rate I’m going to need another bookshelf!
Building Beehives for Dummies by Howland Blackiston.
I’m a dummies fan!  Seriously I know some people shudder at this books but in all honesty they are usually really, really good!  This one is pretty new and it is loaded with information and images on building all kinds of hives as well as hive accessories.  Langstroth, Top Bar, Warre and the British National are in there, as are hive stands, screened bottom boards, hive top feeders and even Nucs.  The directions are easy to understand and the images are easy to read.  There are several things in this book that we will be building!
Top Bar Beekeeping by Les Crowder and Heather Harrell
You know my love of TBH’s, you know that I’m a hobbyist and have ever desire to make sure that my bees are happy and healthy and I think Top Bars will help with that goal (not to say that they are the only way).  I haven’t finished this one yet but so far it’s been very informative (not that I expect less from Les Crowder!) and I’ve already learned some things I didn’t know.  My favorite tid bit thus far has to do with 120 degrees and the shape of comb and TBH bodies.  Want to know more, get the book Winking smile
Swarm Traps and Bait Hives by McCartney Taylor. 
This guys got YouTube videos that will keep you busy for hours!  If you’ve got free time look him up, they aren’t flashy but they are informative, like did you know that a bread knife makes a better TBH tool than anything else?  Nope I didn’t either but watch his video and it makes sense!  So this book is written like someone sitting down and having a chat with you.  He doesn’t overload you with facts, figures and what not, it’s very reader friendly.  So basically he goes over what to use as a bait hive, what to put in it and where to put it.  I was happy to see mention of Top Bars and how to use them in a bait hive as I’d never seen that addressed before!
The Thinking Beekeeper from Christy Hemenway
Ok I confess that a large part of the reason that I got this book was because of the guy who pitched a fit on Amazon in the review section.  He was upset and took the title to mean that anyone that wasn’t using TBH’s wasn’t a thinking beekeeper. Open-mouthed smile  The fact that the title alone could conjure so much emotion made me want to read it even more.  I was already familiar with Christy and Gold Star and their belief in more natural beekeeping methods.  This book follows right along with what they teach on their website with a little more information and details.  If you are just getting into TBH’s it’s a good book to read, if you’ve been doing it a while and are pursuing a natural means it’s a good book to add to your collection.
I don’t know if it will ever happen where people stop associating Langstroth hives with commercial beekeepers and everything else with hobbyist.  I don’t know if those that use Langs will ever broadly accept that bees can be kept in other ways, or that even if someone is using a Lang they can do it without chemicals.  In any event educating yourself on any and all means of beekeeping can only help you and the bees in the end!

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