“Outside The Swarm” Column

“Outside The Swarm” Column

It’s not always the obvious answer…

Beekeeping is a fascinating hobby that challenges us to understand and learn from our bees on an ongoing bases. While the true authority are the bees themselves, there’s no shortage of opinion from beekeepers. Whether in the form of books, online content, beekeeping classes or any other means, it is simple to find a strong opinion! And yet there are few absolutes in beekeeping. The underlying “truths” of beekeeping are not as simple as we would like and there are a complex set of reasons why bees act the way they do.

The Dangers of Group Speak

Like any hobby, beekeeping experiences trends! For various reasons, not least of which is the power of social media, ordinary, unproven ideas and philosophies can quickly become the “done thing”. This then becomes so-called “group speak”, which builds momentum and interest among a very large audience. All the while for a topic that is potentially based on a shaky premise.

Outside The Swarm

This column asks questions! Yes, it’s opinionated – but the common theme is to not just accept “truisms” because everyone else shouts the same tune. Rather, Outside The Swarm is about seeking actual evidence and, in it’s absence, asking questions. The intent is to help you – the sincere and interested beekeeper – ask your own, tough questions. And next time someone tells you “I do this because everyone else does” you have a different philosophy to offer! Ron Lane has years of experience as a beekeeper in beautiful Oregon and regularly teaches beekeeping classes. He contributes to our “Newbee Questions, Expert Answers” column. We do hope you enjoy this series.

About Ron Lane

Ron Lane has kept bees for the last decade in the beautiful state of Oregon. He’s an instructor teaching classes in the Oregon Master Beekeeping Program and privately mentors new beekeepers as well as tending to his own fifteen to twenty colonies spread over four different bee yards. Ron has a passion for bees and encourages your questions here on the Perfectbee web site. Ron and his wife share their home with Burly, a 150 pound English Mastiff, enjoy organic gardening and traveling throughout the Pacific Northwest. One of his favorite activities is discussing beekeeping issues with a friend while sharing a cold micro-brew. His “Outside the Swarm” mentality has also led him into writing and he has published two books under the pen name of Tyler Roberts – “Truths Blood” and “Red Star Rising”.

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