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9 Beekeeping Books For Beginners – Learn About Caring For Bees

Beekeeping is starting to become more and more popular as the years go by, which is excellent as the more people know about bees, the better we can help and protect them. Things can be overwhelming when you first begin your beekeeping journey, and you may not know where to start. So, here are the best beekeeping books for beginners to get you going.

caricature of a bee with books in its hands

Here are the best and most highly recommended beekeeping books for beginners:

  1. The Beekeeper’s Handbook
  2. Honeybee Democracy
  3. Beekeeping For Dummies
  4. Homegrown Honey Bees
  5. The Backyard Beekeeper
  6. The Buzz About Bees
  7. The Beekeepers Bible
  8. Beginning Beekeeping
  9. The Practical Beekeeper

Scroll down for more details about each book.

Why are books a good resource to learn beekeeping from? What considerations do you need to keep in mind when choosing the right beekeeping book for you? Why are these books the best for beginner beekeepers? Let us find out!

Why You Should Buy Beekeeping Books

Beekeeping is a technical business, and if it is not done correctly, it can be extremely dangerous. Also, if you do not understand the needs and requirements of the bees, they may leave your hive in search of more suitable locations. So, if you want to start beekeeping, you need to educate yourself as much as you can on the matter to make sure you, and the bees, are happy and safe.

With beekeeping, there is a lot of information you need to know to build a good foundation and understanding around beekeeping before you can begin the actual beekeeping part. You need to know bee biology, hive management, beekeeping equipment, and how to use it safely and effectively.

Knowing all this information is essential not only to keep you safe and to help the bees but to prevent colony failures and ensure you do not waste money on unnecessary equipment.

When you first start out on your beekeeping journey, buying a few beekeeping books for beginners is a great way to increase your knowledge on the subject before you try and gain any first-hand experience.

How To Choose The Beekeeping Books You Buy

Before you decide to buy a beekeeping book for beginners, there are a few things you need to keep in mind when choosing the right book for you. Let us go through some of these considerations.

Before buying any book, you need to ensure it is based on your location, as bees in different countries and states will require different equipment. For example, bees in your country may be less aggressive than bees in a different country. This means that you may not need a full beekeeping suit, so you will only need to buy a half suit.

Another thing to consider is the type of bee you want to keep. There are many different bee species in the world, so you need to decide which one you want to keep and ensure you buy a book that educates you on that specific bee.

A question you need to ask yourself before choosing a beekeeping book to buy is, “are you going to do beekeeping as a hobby, or do you want to do beekeeping commercially?

Your answer to this question will determine the equipment you will need and the type of hive you buy to keep your bees in. For example, if you just want your beekeeping to be a hobby, the hive you buy will be smaller and easier to handle than the hive used in commercial beekeeping.

So, make sure you get books about beekeeping that will help you in YOUR journey.

The 9 Best Beekeeping Books For Beginners

With beekeeping, you need to be very particular with the books you buy, especially if you are a beginner, as there are books out there that are of low quality and will not give you the information you need to get started and stay safe.

The books that are listed below are in no particular order, and they cover various aspects of beekeeping in different learning styles. So be sure to go through them and choose the ones that will suit your location, your wanted bee type, your intentions (hobby or commercial beekeeping), and your learning style.

1. The Beekeeper’s Handbook

The Beekeeper's Handbook

The Beekeeper’s Handbook is an excellent book to start your beekeeping journey with, as it will guide you through the entire beekeeping process. From setting up your beehive and installing it, choosing the right location to set up your hive, all the way to how to harvest your first batch of honey from your bees.

Ensure you get the last edition of this book: this is the one that will help you the most as it covers a wide range of needed knowledge. This edition is excellent for new beekeepers because it also goes through some more recent challenges that beekeepers today have to adapt to, like CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder).  

This book is easy to read and has multiple illustrations to help you understand the information better. Another great thing about this book is that when you have gained enough knowledge and are considered an experienced beekeeper, you can still use it as a reference book.

Buy it here.

2. Honeybee Democracy

Honeybee Democracy

Honeybee Democracy is a great book that is written in an easy-to-understand layout. This book is written for a beginner beekeeper, but it is a handy book for reference no matter your experience level in beekeeping.

Honeybee Democracy goes through bee behavior and gives a detailed outline of the politics inside the beehive, which is essential for a beekeeper to understand correctly.

Understanding this information allows the beekeeper to enhance equipment and hives to bring maximum comfort to the bees. This will help encourage the bees to stay in your have and makes them work more effectively, improving honey production.

This book is not a manual on how to begin beekeeping, but it is an important one to add to your collection, especially as a beginner beekeeper, as it will help you understand your bees better.

Get it here.

3. Beekeeping For Dummies

Beekeeping For Dummies

Although the “For Dummies” books started out as a sort of gag gift you would give to people for birthdays, it has turned into a great well of knowledge that covers a variety of topics. Beekeeping For Dummies is actually a great resource to go through if you are a beginner beekeeper.

This beekeeping book is one of the most highly recommended books for beginner beekeepers to go and buy, and for a good reason. Beekeeping For Dummies has a large amount of good information within its pages, but it is written in an easy read and humorous way, making it a great starting point for many people.

This book goes through a surprisingly wide range of topics from basic bee anatomy, basic bee behavior, the different hive types, how to use them, and some common challenges beekeepers face, especially in their first year. All this information makes this book an excellent buy for beginner beekeepers.

4. Homegrown Honey Bees

Homegrown Honey Bees: An Absolute Beginner's Guide to Beekeeping Your First Year, from Hiving to Honey Harvest

Homegrown Honey Bees is a book that was written specifically with absolute beginner beekeepers in mind. If you know nothing about beekeeping but want to start, then this is the book for you.

This book is also helpful for beginners with a bit of knowledge on the topic to own as it can reinforce some of the knowledge you already have, which will help you remember it. The Homegrown honey bees book is laid out in a simple and easy-to-read format, and it has step-by-step guides for you to follow. It also goes through how to identify members of the hive, which is beneficial information.  

The nice thing about this book is that the author shares their own experiences with beekeeping and all the trials and triumphs they went through. This is a great thing to have in a book as you can see what you are getting yourself into with beekeeping and help you decide if it is something you actually want to start or not.

5. The Backyard Beekeeper

The Backyard Beekeeper, 4th Edition: An Absolute Beginner's Guide to Keeping Bees in Your Yard and Garden

Whether you are a beginner beekeeper or an experienced one, The Backyard Beekeeper is a great book to buy. The author has over 40 years of experience in beekeeping.

This book is written in an easy-to-read and simple way, and it goes through many relatable situations in beekeeping that are sure to put a smile on your face. Reading it won’t feel like a chore filled with bee science and bee care, but rather a fun adventure.

Reading this book is like having a conversation with someone, and you will find it difficult to put down. The Backyard Beekeeper also has many illustrations to help you understand and remember the information easily. The book is filled with fun facts, anecdotes, and helpful tips that benefit beginners and experienced alike.

Get your copy here.

6. The Buzz About Bees

The Buzz about Bees: Biology of a Superorganism

This book focuses on understanding bees rather than caring for them, which is useful knowledge to have as a beekeeper, as knowing why your bees do what they do can help you care for them better.

With this book, you will learn about the queen bee and her responsibilities, how bees see flowers, how the bees construct their honeycomb, and a lot more. There are also lots of enchanting photographs of bees and their hives that will get you itching to start your beekeeping journey.

The content in this book is based on scientific research about bees, so you know its content is accurate and proven. Despite this, this book is an easy one to read through and has a friendly tone.

7. The Beekeepers Bible

The Beekeeper's Bible: Bees, Honey, Recipes & Other Home Uses

The Beekeepers Bible is basically a thesaurus for beekeepers and a must-have for beginners. This is not a book that you will only read once; you will use it as a resource throughout your beekeeping journey.

This book covers everything you will need to know about beekeeping. It will take you through where and how to begin, the history of beekeeping, and the advancements that have been made over the decades in beekeeping. It has a beekeeping guide, and it provides you with some recipes you can use your fresh honey in once harvested.

This guide is a “one-stop-shop” when it comes to beekeeping. Written in a friendly and easy-to-understand tone, it is geared to Langstroth hive keepers, so if you keep different hives, keep that in mind. This book can still prove useful to you as it covers many strategies to help your hive thrive and for the delicious recipes.

Check it out on Amazon.

8. Beginning Beekeeping

Beginning Beekeeping: Everything You Need to Make Your Hive Thrive!

This is a lovely book written by a beekeeper in Texas, USA, so if you live in this state, it’s a must-have. In it, you’ll find a complete guide for beginner beekeepers filled with practical knowledge and skills that you will need to keep your hive strong, happy, and healthy.

The Beginning Beekeeper is mainly for beginner to intermediate-level beekeepers, but it’s also great to refer to later in your journey. This book is well-researched and is filled with factual information in an easy-to-read and friendly tone.

9. The Practical Beekeeper

The Practical Beekeeper: Beekeeping Naturally

A fascinating read and an excellent resource for all beekeepers of any experience level, this book is text-heavy, so if you are not one for pictures, this book is perfect for you.

The Practical Beekeeper book will introduce you to basic beekeeping, the different bees in the hive, and your role as the beekeeper. This book will take you through the challenges of beekeeping and the changes that have been made to the industry over the last few years.


There are plenty of books out on the market for beginner beekeepers; the ones that are listed above are just some of the most highly recommended books that you know are fact-filled and will help you in your beekeeping journey. Just remember to buy the books that are suited for your location and interests. Good luck with your Beekeeping!


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Adriana Copaceanu is a passionate nature lover living in the country on her dream property where she grows vegetables, lavender, and wildflowers that she shares with the wildlife they attract. When she's not in the garden, she loves spending time with her chickens and planning her next nature project. Check out her books below:

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