Modern beekeeping—influenced by new technologies and breeding methods—has increased honey production but left bee colonies weak and vulnerable to diseases. With an alarming decline of the bee population raising concerns about an impending ecological crisis, many beekeepers are seeking a more sustainable way of caring for bees.
Biodynamic Beekeeping is the first book to offer practical instruction on caring for bees through the use of biodynamic ideas and methods. By considering the influence of star and planetary movements on the natural habits of bees, the biodynamic approach encourages beekeepers to become more tuned into their bees and indicates, for example, the best days to inspect colonies or gather honey.
This fascinating book offers beekeepers detailed advice and instruction on how to work more holistically, including:
— the challenges and advantages of breeding queen bees
— how to artificially induce swarming to propagate colonies
— how to use biodynamic ashing techniques to combat varroa mites
— instructions for making winter feed according to current biodynamic thinking
C O N T E N T S:
Foreword by David Heaf
1. The Start of the Bee Year
2. Caring for Bees According to Cosmic Rhythms
3. The First Spring Inspection
4. The Building Frame
5. The Urge to Swarm
6. Colony Regeneration and Propagation
7. Breeding Queen Bees
8. Honeycomb Construction
10. Feeding in Winter
11. Bee Diseases
12. Methods of Ash Usage
13. The Cultivation of Plants for Bees
14. The Conservation of Bees for the Future
Bibliography and Recommended Reading
Matthias Thun achieved an MA in beekeeping in 1966 and has been a beekeeper for more than fifty years. The son of Maria Thun, the biodynamic pioneer, Matthias continues his mother's research into the effects of the moon, planets, and stars on biodynamic agriculture and methods and has lectured on beekeeping at international biodynamic conferences and training seminars. He is the author of Biodynamic Beekeeping: A Sustainable Way to Keep Happy, Healthy Bees (2020) and produces the annual biodynamic guides Maria Thun Biodynamic Calendar and When Wine Tastes Best.
David Heaf is a beekeeper, biodynamic expert, author, and translator. His books include Natural Beekeeping with the Warre Hive: A Manual(2013) and The Bee-friendly Beekeeper: A Sustainable Approach (2015). David lives in Wales, UK.