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In collaboration with IU's Center for Rural Engagement and Paoli Public Library, this guide is meant to serve as a reference tool for those interested in beekeeping.


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Emily Alford
Wells Library 264
1320 East Tenth Street
Indiana University
Bloomington, IN 47405
(812) 855-8155

Online Beekeeping Resources for Beginners

Bee Built is a fairly new beekeeping online resource that sells supplies and books, and offers educational guidance on the importance and establishment of beekeeping. Their beekeeping for beginners page first asks the question Is beekeeping for you? then gives a history and overview of bees, such as the types of bees and hives that you could house them in. There are then three sections that you could learn more about at the bottom of the page, either gear, bees, or hives which will then provide you with more information on what is right for you and how you want to start beekeeping. 

The Spruce is an online home crafting, gardening, and cooking website that offers ideas and step-by-step guidelines on how to complete projects. Within their outdoor and gardening section, they have an entire guide to beekeeping. This will be very useful as it tackles all the issues that may come up when beekeeping. 

The Barefoot Beekeeper is an online resource that offers free downloadable information for beginners on how to start beekeeping, books that are worth purchasing, new hive types and what hives work the best, as well as videos and a forum for new beekeepers to discuss bee related topics. 

The Old Farmer's Almanac is a source that has been used commonly by farmers and gardeners and on this online resource a Beekeeping 101 guide is available. This guide lists the pros and cons of beekeeping and helping someone interesting in the craft to understand if it is truly for them. They have a beekeeping 101 series of seven. other articles that speak on the planning, supplies, and common challenges with beekeeping. 

A bee next to a purple flower.

Indiana Based Resources

Beekeeping Safety Program

This program was developed to provide safety precautions to Indiana University related beekeeping activities, programs and research. It was mainly created for IU students, faculty, and staff who were beekeeping in campus areas, but the guidelines that they provide for safety are an excellent resource for future beekeepers. 

Keepers of the Bees

This online source is focused on informing visitors about beekeeping at Indiana University and what is happening to the bees currently. What is beneficial to the beginner beekeeper is the ability to learn about the status of bees, as they are a crucial element to this work. This source will also point beginners to different sources at IU, the research that is happening to study bees, and others in the community who have been beekeepers for a long time.  

The Bee Corp

Bee Corp is a company that was started by former Indiana University students.Through the company they have created an app called Verifi, which purpose is to maintain a connection between growers and beekeepers that uses image analysis to measure colony strength. Essentially, the app is measuring pollination strength and value, which gives more time for the growers and beekeepers to prepare their crops and beehives. 

Picture of a hive's honeycomb

Journals on Bees and Beekeeping

Dictionary of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) is an online resource that houses over 300 journals. Their mission is to increase the awareness and usage of high quality open access journals of all disciplines, that are free to use. This website lets you download the articles, or you can read them while there. Check out the links below to find journals on bees and beekeeping. 

  • Bees
    • There are over 3,000 articles provided on bees, and the range from through 10 different subject areas, such as medicine, botany, and animal culture. 
  • Beekeeping
    • There are a fewer number of articles provided on beekeeping, since it is more specific. The DOAJ has 454 articles that speak on beekeeping. 

The American Bee Journal is the oldest English beekeeping journal in the world. It does require a paid subscription to have the journals mailed, or you are able to look at columns from the current issue online for free. 

Simple Beekeeping Video

Guide created by:

Mariah Isbell, IU Libraries Reference Assistant