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John's Beekeeping Notebook

Lorenzo Lorraine LangstrothL. L. Langstroth’s

BEE-KEEPER’S AXIOMS

From the book A Practical Treatise on the Hive and the Honey-Bee, by L. L. Langstroth, 1853. 
Punctuated and emphasis as originally printed:


There are a few first principles in bee-keeping which ought to be as familiar to the Apiarian as the letters of his alphabet :

1st.  Bees gorged with honey never volunteer an attack.

2nd.  Bees may always be made peaceable by inducing them to accept liquid sweets.

3rd.  Bees, when frightened by smoke or by drumming on their hives, fill themselves with honey and lose all disposition to sting, unless they are hurt.

4th.  Bees dislike any quick movements about their hives, especially any motion which jars their combs.

5th.  Bees dislike the offensive odor of sweaty animals, and will not endure impure air from human lungs.

6th.  The bee-keeper will ordinarily derive all his profits from stocks, strong and healthy, in early Spring.

7th.  In districts where forage is abundant only for a short period, the largest yield of honey will be secured by a very moderate increase of stocks.

8th.  A moderate increase of colonies in any one season, will, in the long run, prove to be the easiest, safest, and cheapest mode of managing bees.

9th.  Queenless colonies, unless supplied with a queen, will inevitably dwindle away, or be destroyed by the bee-moth, or by robber-bees.

10th.  The formation of new colonies should ordinarily be confined to the season when bees are accumulating honey ; and if this, or any other operation must be performed, when forage is scarce, the greatest precautions should be used to prevent robbing.

    The essence of all profitable bee-keeping is contained in Oettl’s Golden Rule : KEEP YOUR STOCKS STRONG.  If you cannot succeed in doing this, the more money you invest in bees, the heavier your losses ; while, if your stocks are strong, you will show that you are a bee-master, as well as a bee-keeper, and may safely calculate on generous returns from your industrious subjects.


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