Where in the World?

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If you were packing for a trip to Mexico, you probably wouldn't bring a parka.

My point being: different areas of the globe have very different climates. Hot and dry, wet and mild, long days or short days, even perfect all year round like Hawaii. Everywhere is different and these differences can affect keeping our honey bees happy and healthy. 

When I first started researching, geographical differences hadn't even crossed my mind.

It wasn't until I got in contact with our local beekeeper, Mark, that I came to realize how important it can be. We live in a very wet climate, which raises concerns about ventilation. Without being properly ventilated, many problems could arise in a hive when the rain comes. Opposed to the traditional flat roof outer cover, Mark builds hives for Vancouver Island with a sloped roof to allow the rain to shed off. He also creates upper ventilation so the condensation doesn't settle, getting the bees wet inside the hive.

Interestingly, because it is wet here on the island, hydration is less of an issue.

I hadn't come across this one in my research until later but bees get thirsty! Though we have a small water source very close, there are many lakes, ponds, creeks and rivers nearby so our bees can stay hydrated. Some hotter, dryer places might find that this is an issue for them and it becomes something to keep conscious of.

Another one to keep in mind is temperature. Cold temperatures will account for a different look into preparing your hive versus somewhere hot. Accommodating for different temperature regions ahead of time would be another factor in helping your success as a beginner.

A geographical difference that also should be taken into account is predators.

Living in western Canada, and in a rural area, bears are a common predator to our hives. Knowing this, we are looking into a possible electric fence to help keep guys like Pooh Bear outta our honey. Being prepared for such predators in your area could save time, money and resources in the long run. 

Different issues like these should be huge factors in your beekeeping research.

My best advice is to contact a local beekeeper. They are experienced and will know better than anyone how your own climate affects your honey bees, not to mention their invaluable hands-on advice. So far, anyone I have met in the bee community has been so open and excited to help us and give their thoughts.

We are still learning so much and are always in contact with beekeepers to get advice or shed light on issues we may come across. We are still very much in the research stage and are learning new things daily about the amazing symbiotic relationship between our little honeybees and our planet.