To start the Business of Bee-Keeping? How Profitable is Bee-Keeping Business? How much capital do I need to start this business? This article seeks to bring to the fore Tips for starting and make additional Income from Bee- Keeping Business.
Honey -Bees start making honey, which is their food, by visiting flowers. They collect a sugary juice called nectar from the blossom by sucking it out with their tongues. They store it in their honey stomach, which is different from their food stomach. When they have a full load, they fly back to the hive. Honey bees collect nectar and convert it to honey. The majority of honey bee larvae eat honey.
Bee farming is a profitable venture, which you can set up with less than two hundred thousand Naira. This will include production of the hives and getting the it colonized. The Location could be a Farmland where the weather conditions are favourable. The bees do not require daily care and you would not need labor until harvest and processing period.There also many products apart from Honey derived from the Bee keeping Examples include: wax (for use in furniture polish, candles and crayons) pollen (used for food, cosmetics, preparation of medicine and hand pollination), propolis (used for repairs of the honeycombs), venom (used for preparing medicine), royal jelly (which is food for queen bees), etc.
Nutritional Benefits of Honey.
- Honey adds good nutrition to diet as a source of Vitamins, and Minerals to the body.
- Honey serves as a major input in Orthodox and traditional medicines.
- Intake of Honey keeps you mentally alert and physically strong for work.
- It is a highly sourced raw material for Industrial Products.
Getting Started with Bee Framing
Obtain your hives:
A hive is a box for keeping the bees. It can be made from different materials. The hives enables the bees to build their nests so that you can manage them easily. It aids easy movement for the bees. All the bees want is a place large enough for the whole colony, its stores, and protection from the weather and attackers.Obtain your hives from the right source, know the parts of a hive and how and when to use them properly. It’s important to have adequate boxes known as ‘supers’ with frames available to place on your hives during nectar flows. If you have 1,000 hives, you will need at least 2,000 extra supers. To start it is okay to go for 500 -2,000 Hives and take advantage of the potentials.
Feed your bees during scarcity of nectar: Having sufficient feeders, sugar and a good water source are essential to caring for your bees properly. Treat your bees with certain medicines to address mites, insect pests, or other diseases.
Cost and potential Income
After the hives have been colonised, which usually is a short while after sitting and baiting, you allow about 10 to 12 months for the honey to mature. Subsequently you can harvest at 7-8months interval. Proper handling of the bees is necessary so they don’t abscond,especially during harvest.
You can get as much as 12 litres of honey per hive in the first year, which can be sold for about N1,500 per litre if retailed, while you will get over 10litres of honey every six to eight months.
10 x 100 is 1,000 litres. That’s N1.5m every 6-8 months for as many years as you want.
Factors to Consider in Locating the Bee Hive
- The first factor is to ensure that there are plenty flowering plants and trees in the area and make sure water source is close to the hives
- Bee hives must be located far from sprayed pesticide.And also they must be protected from strong winds and strong sunlight by placing them under trees or artificial shades.
- Hives must be placed far from Human activities to prevent been stung by bees.
Harvesting your Honey
Harvest honey at the end of the flowering season. You pick the extreme combs that contain ripe honey with an envelope of thin layer of white beeswax. As you harvest mature honey, make sure you leave combs containing pollen or developing bees. After separating honey from the beeswax combs, melt the beeswax over water into a block and store until you gather enough for sale. It does not spoil with time. Always return empty combs to the hives for bees to produce more honey.
Fikayo Owoeye writes for Nairametrics