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Question

Which of the following is/are an important criteria for successful bee-keeping?

A
Handling and collection of honey and beeswax
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B
Knowledge of the nature, social structure and habits of bees
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C
An appropriate location for keeping the beehives
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D
All of these
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Solution

The correct option is D All of these
Apiculture or bee-keeping is the rearing, caring and management of honeybees for obtaining honey and beeswax.

For successful bee-keeping one should have:
  • Knowledge of the nature, habits and social organisation of bees.
  • A proper location for the apiary (place where honey bees are reared).
  • The knowledge of techniques required to catch and hive swarms (group of bees).
  • Management of beehives during different seasons.
  • Techniques to extract honey and beeswax from the hives.
Knowledge of the nature and habits of bees helps the bee keepers to avoid an aggressive attack by the bees while working with the hives for harvesting products. It also helps the bee keepers to ensure well being of the bees and protect them from pathogens and predators.

The bees are social creatures. They live in colonies with a strict division of labour - the queen (only fertile female) lays the eggs, the drones (fertile males) fertilise the queen and the workers (sterile females) carry out all the miscellaneous work.

Figure: Three kinds of honeybees in a hive

The location of the apiaries also plays a major role in apiculture. Generally apiaries are located in places which have nearby pastures, fruit orchards, gardens or agricultural fields so that there is ample supply of pollen and nectar for the bees. Apiaries also need to be located in areas where the bees would have the least chances of being threatened.

Figure: Apiary

Awareness about these things helps the beekeepers to understand the life cycle of the bees, the appropriate time for harvesting product and the best practices to increase honey production.

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