There’s something fascinating about the age old tradition of keeping bees. Watching bees forage on your garden flowers, hearing the low calming hum from their hives, smelling their honey on the breeze on warm summer nights can be a nourishing experience. It’s easy, with good training, to keep bees in your backyard, rooftop or in your back paddock. These bees will pollinate local food, bushes, plants and trees for free while producing quality raw honey for you and your family. They ask nothing in return for this immense service to us. They do require ongoing management to ensure they remain healthy and disease free. Bee friendly management practices will help you keep strong, disease resistant bee colonies. Explore this section to learn more about keeping bees in a bee friendly way and helping them survive and express their natural bee-ness.

Natural Beekeeping 

When honey bee colonies make their own choice on how to rear new queens, these new virgin queens mate with the local drone pool and genetic diversity of the bee population is strengthened.

It's all about the bees and not the beekeeper. Natural beekeeping is sometimes called "bee-centric" beekeeping or "bee-friendly beekeeping" and so is a very different way to approach beekeeping than the current commercial practices where honey production, harvest and dollar profits are the main drivers for the apiarist. Understanding bee behaviour and bee biology in all its complexity underpins natural beekeeping practices and the design of the hives used. Each bee is a part of greater whole and a bee colony can be understood as a super organism. Hives used by natural beekeepers mimic natural nest structures and bees are allowed to draw their own comb, determine the cell size they will construct for the brood, decide when to rear a new queen and when to swarm. In these more natural conditions they develop immunities to pests and diseases in their local environment, maintain a genetic diversity with open mated queens and thrive. Healthy happy bees.

Resources to help you

Gather By website has links and resources for you to learn natural beekeeping plus information for those both new or experienced in the art of beekeeping. Check out:

  • In the section below on this page you will find links to beekeeping specific topics: Click through and learn more.
  • The Bee Resources section of this website has links to both Honey Bee and Native Bee websites and resources
  • Bee Resources section also has a list of natural beekeeping groups - well worth linking into these networks!
  • The Learn section of the website (check on the top bar) provides you with links to DIY resources for beekeeping
  • The Events Calendar lists upcoming workshops and often includes natural beekeeping events -  attend workshops and events in your area

You can help us grow our Bee Directories and support the growing interest in natural beekeeping practices by letting us know of  events, resources and websites that you have found useful. We list them on the Gather By website so others can use them.  Recommend your favourite beekeeping sites


Useful links:

Hives and hive ware

Building hives

Planting for bee fodder

How to catch a swarm

Bee biology

Opening a top bar hive

Pests and diseases

Other useful links




Become a member of Gather By

Sign up as a member to get access to more sustainability resources and become a VIP member with 10% off every purchase.