F A Q
What’s all this then?
Anarchy Apiaries is a 501c3 non-profit organization (thanks to the help of our friends at the FBBA and beeunderstanding.org). Our mission is to
Anarchy Apiaries is the treatment-free, fly-by-night bee operation started by Sam Comfort, who began raising queens from survivor stock in 2005. We sell/donate mated queen bees, nucs, and package bees, as well as teach beekeepers to do it themselves on their own homesteads while keeping parasite and disease levels down through the bees’ own strengths. We look at the health of the global hive through a trifocal lens: genetics, management, and nutrition.
Anarchy Apiaries runs around 800 hives (a mix of Langstroth, top bar, and modified-Warre “Comfort” hives) up and down the east coast with concentrations of localized gene pools in both the Hudson Valley, NY and south FL. All of our hives are not treated in any way, and once they reach teenager age (ten combs or more), they are cut-off from any supplemental feeding and are not moved. Our queens are raised from 3-4 year old mothers and mated in areas of survivor drone saturation.
If you find this work meaningful, you can support us financially by using the donate button to the right or left. We can support the future of the bees we care for by planting lots and lots of nectar-producing trees.
What are the goals?
Our recent goals include the distribution of mite-and-disease-tolerant, cold-hardy mated queen bees, facilitating Beekeeping Bootcamp hands-on trainings, setting up every 7-year-old with their own bee hive, reinvigorating our own NY bee club- the B. A. N. D. (Beekeepers Association of Northern Dutchess), the New Bee Circus travelling bee medicine/training/puppet show, and modifying our bee-hauling van to run on waste vegetable oil.
Long term goals include
Tell Bayer what Bob Dylan said:
There oughta be a law against you comin around.
Click above, or below. This year’s Anarchy Apiaries Almanac is a condensed mini-zine. One side folds up to eight mini pages, some cutting required. The back is unfolded to read a timeline and extracurricular activities. To print, it's best to fit the size to the page.
I’ve attempted to include everything you might want to know to start and keep a hive of bees on ONE PAGE. Let me know how I did!
Please distribute this! The AAA is free to all. Any donations help me edit and distribute. Contact me and I’ll mail you an AAA and some bees too.
May the bees be with you!
Perhaps Hawaiian beekeeping is in its darkest hour. Beekeepers on the big island are getting an earful of “do this” and “do this” and “don’t do that!” I figure the last thing needed is for me to add to the pile- and besides, I run Anarchy Apiaries: anarchy does not make rules for other people, bees, or beekeepers. The best use of my energy is to BOOST MORALE. Bees have a unique resilience. The more bees die, the more they live. My bees and my story are just an example.
I’ve always done what I think the bees are telling me to do, but really that seems to come down to doing whatever I like. What I really like to do when in groups like W.A.S. is to talk about the bees that keep me, where they come from, how great I think they are, and how I am running a bee business, mostly selling top bar nucs, shaking packages, raising queens, and doing honey CSA shares, with minimal inputs and no treatments while under the pressures of varroa, nosema, hive beetles, global weirding, and whatever else is out there. This is working for me; while all bees have inherent value, my primary interest is quality of life for them and me.
I would like to say that I won my first hives in a poker game, but it wasn’t so sweet. I started out commercially working for a 1000 hive stay-at-home operation in Vermont. I got paid (not much but worth it) to get stung, and there were hard lessons that first exhausting season in 2002. I learned that all bees everywhere were not doing as well as they used to. Now that story is a national phenomenon that grows bigger every year.
In lieu of yet another incredibly fun and cheerful meeting, for June the B. A. N. D. (Beekeepers Association of Northern Hoopla) is invited to join the Hudson Valley CRAFT group for a Bee Yard Tour at the Germantown Community Farm, Tuesday, June 28, 6-8 PM. Bring some snacks if you are the hungry type. The GCF hosts Anarchy Apiaries, the Fog and Thistle CSA, the Good Fight Herb Co., and founders of WGXC Community Radio. It's a great and happening place!
Stay posted for more events (featuring even more advanced notice), such as the launching of the Backwards Beekeepers Club of NYC - proliferating wingnut insect stewardship - July 9 and 10 at Eagle Street Rooftop Farm in Brooklyn. And come to our annual Field Day Potluck at the Cedar Cliff Bee Yard, which is now also the Great Song Farm CSA, later in July. It's all gonna bee HUGE!
Bees on the Brain,
I am humbled and in awe of this Old Family hive, which I removed in Copake, NY, in June, 2010. They wintered in Germantown and came through strong. There was three buckets of honey. A beautiful queen. I did not wear a veil. These are the bees that traverse dream and reality. I am under their tutelage.
I’ve recently finished reading Honey Bee Democracy, the new book by Tom Seeley at Cornell. In the book, he describes 60 years of swarm behavior observations, from Martin Lindauer to present. Not only are the dances of the scouts decoded, but Seeley has investigated how the hive mind furiously dance-debates potential nest sites, then reaches an accurate and timely decision, and then acts on it (10,000 bees at once), much like the three-pound human brain thinks. Seeley goes further to compare the mental capacity of the hive to decision making at New England Town meetings, what he calls, “arguably the most authentic form of human democracy in the world,” where decisions are made in regards for the community, both individuals and the whole, and leadership is restricted, if present at all. Seeley’s countless experiments together add mesmerizing depth in our understanding of hive wisdom. It is the most all-encompassing research I have seen that reinforces the fact that the hive can do anything. There are certain bees that make it possible. And it concludes that bees could even guide humanity to a more peaceful future. I hope that this book, like this epic Copake hive, makes beekeepers pause and consider our intrusions. How could we know better than the bees?
Click the title above to download the book. A life-long work in process. Really needs another edit, some second opinions and fact-checking, but Enjoy. If anyone wants to publish it, go ahead. If Derrick Jensen wants to write a prologue, that would bee awesome. Use it. Abuse it. These machines kill facists. Continued apologies for lack of pictures, drawings, grammar, decency, just hope it helps you out.
2010 ANARCHY APIARIES ALMANAC
Buzz, that's right! Days getting longer.. the sun will shine! Getting done 2010's version of the Anarchy Apiaries Almanac. It's not all that differnt from the 2009 Anarchy Apiaries Almanac, but there is a great new bear story.
It's FREE and will always bee free.
I've promised this to a lot of folks- the link will be here soon. (I don't know how to do it yet.)
March 14, Coral Springs, FL, 4 PM
March 30, Fairfield, CT
March 31, Bard Prison Initiative, Bard College,
April 1, Keene, NH - Monadnock Beekeepers Association. wow, Spring is coming.
April 24-25 - Outlaw Beekeeping in the Fine State of Mississippi
what would make a beeautiful world?