That’s right! You can rent out your bees!
Self-sufficiency is fantastic but many of us are put off from this style of living purely because, no matter where we turn in the modern world, everyone wants money. Once in a while – be it for emergencies or otherwise – you will need some funds… but who said being self-sufficient meant you couldn’t make any money?
Bees Benefit Everyone!
We all know that bees are brilliant. They basically populate the world through pollinating our fruits and vegetables. In fact, scientists estimate that worldwide famine would ensue if they died out. Besides their extreme importance in pollination; bees can also be used as a source of honey. Keeping a hive enables you to make a little money and save the environment… and we call that a double win!
Bees also represent a second resource or income stream for the self-sufficient honey farmer. Now, you can rent your bees out to others for a temporary boost in revenue. Not only do you get a nice steady income stream, you also get your bees back at the end of the agreed period.
Why Rent Out Your Bees?
Aside from the chance to make spare income, there are certain circumstances when renting out your bees is a good way to keep them safe. If you are expecting freezing cold to roll in and last for months on end then you might want to rent your bees somewhere warmer. If you are in the middle of replanting fields and have no flowers or crops for them then you may want to relocate for a year… sometimes, moving the bees is the best thing for them.
Going further afield, there are a number of organisations growing out of the decline in bee species with the main focus of preserving them. One such firm is run by Tim Smith, who negotiates contracts between hive owners and farmers. Tim estimates that the California Almond groves alone require some 2 million bees for complete pollination… the problem is that 2 million bees is roughly the equivalent of the entire USA bee supply.
What does this mean for your average bee owner? It means that your hives are in huge demand. It means you are in a sellers (r in this case, renters) market. It means that there is a small fortune to be made while you simultaneously protect the species and feed your own colony. Renting bees, in fact, is an economic transaction in which everybody wins!
How Do I Rent Out My Bees?
There are a number of ways to rent out your bee hives and most of them are free. If you have access to the internet, the Facebook Marketplace doesn’t charge for advertising and allows you to reach out to other beekeepers in your area.
There are several online companies who may be interested in renting your hive, or who specialise in selling and renting out bees. If this is your preferred method of bee rental then see the following sites:
- The Best Bees Company – they manage hives for those that do not have the time or money.
- The Honey Ladies source beehives to rent out and may be interested in yours.
- Bee Opic-Beekeeping are a similar firm worth checking into.
Bee rental isn’t for everyone but it may be an interesting side gig for your self-sufficient lifestyle. If you do try it for yourself then get in touch and let us know how it went! We are always interested in how our little schemes turn out!