Hello! My name is Christine and I own The Kansas Bee Company. I started this bee business in 2016 and it's been an amazing 6 years! My husband Jake is a very talented carpenter and he helps me when he's not busy working. We operate a small number of hives, so we are by no means a commercial beekeeping operation. My goal isn't to run hundreds of hives. My goal is to help thousands of new beekeepers get started!
At the very bottom of this page, you will find a slideshow of pictures we've taken over the years!
How can I reach you? You can text or call me at 816-739-0726.
You can also email me at: email@example.com
What are your hours? The Kansas Bee Company is an online - home based - business. Honey is sold in stores and the stores have their own specific hours. Please refer to the HONEY tab for more information on purchasing honey. Bee sales are online only, while bee pickups are pickup only. (Pickups are only for customers who have pre-purchased bees). While I don't have set hours, I reply to most calls/texts within 24 hours.
Why are you called The Kansas Bee Company, but you are located in Belton, MO? I get asked this quite often! I started the business in 2016 with a beekeeper on the Kansas side, hence the name. Now I am on my own, but the name had grown, so I couldn't really change it at that point.
I want to start beekeeping, what is the best time to start? May-June!! Bee sales start in the fall, for pickups the following May/June. The goal is to have bee pickups the first 2 weekends in May. Please make note of this so you can plan accordingly.
Why do I need to pay a deposit? All bee sellers require a deposit of some kind to hold your order. The Kansas Bee Company's deposit is always 1/2 down. This allows us to make purchases to get your bee order ready.
I'm ready to start learning, what should I do first? Take the "Introduction to Beekeeping" class I have recorded through zoom. This class is under the CLASSES tab on this website. Once you take this class, you will understand so much more about how to start this hobby, trust me!
Do you ship bees? No. We do not ship bees! If you purchase bees from another state, I'm going to assume you are local with a long-distance number.
I live several hours from Belton, Missouri. Will the bees survive a long trip home? Absolutely! We close your NUC or HIVE and ensure it is ready for your trip home. Bees are perfectly safe in the back of a truck for several hours. We wouldn't sell them to people out of state if traveling wasn't safe.
Do you sell queens? No, and I don't have a referral for anyone who does sell queens.
Do you sell packages? No, I do not sell packages. Packages come from Southern states where the weather is much warmer. When they arrive in KS/MO in April, we are still dealing with colder temperatures, or the reverse happens, and we are warmer than expected. I've seen pictures of an entire shipment of packages get overheated on a UPS or Fed-Ex truck. This results in their death. :(
What's the difference between a NUC and a package? A NUC is an established hive, just 1/2 the size of a full hive. The queen is introduced and laying eggs. The frames have comb built on them and honey stored on them. A package is a box of bees with a queen inside who has not been introduced. After you shake the bees into your empty hive, the bees will need to build comb and start storing away honey. The queen will also need to be introduced to the colony. You will receive a package sooner than a NUC, but overall, you're still ahead by purchasing a NUC. Also, just because you receive a package sooner, that doesn't mean it's a good thing. Packages arrive from Southern states like Georgia for example. While the weather may be warmer there, we still have nights that drop below freezing in mid-April here. I get calls every year from people who received their package in the middle of April, and it froze to death in KS/MO. I do not sell packages.
I just need one box, or a smoker, or a hive tool. Do you sell individual items? Technically, no. I sell kits that include everything in a set.
I have bees living inside my siding, what do I do? Call Midwest Bee Removal at 816-217-4214. Tell them The Kansas Bee Company sent you. **I do not move bumblebee's nests, handle a carpenter bee problem, kill wasps or yellow jackets. If you have a cluster of honeybees hanging off a tree limb, fence post or something else that is outside, I can possibly retrieve it. It depends on how high the cluster is off the ground and where you are located.
Do you provide tours? Not at this time. Maybe in the future, but for right now, I offer an inside the hive class. This class is for Bee Customers only. Why? Because the class is all about how to care for your bees once you get home with them.
What kind of bees do you sell? The BEES we sell are Minnesota Hygienic Italians: Minnesota Hygienic Italians were developed by Dr. Marla Spivak at the University of Minnesota Bee Lab. Dr. Spivak was named a MacArthur Fellow in 2010 These bees are bred to have a high degree of hygienic behavior known to be effective against diseases of the brood such as American foulbrood and chalkbrood. This trait is thought to be two behaviors acting in synergy, the uncapping of diseased cells, then the removal of the pathogen along with the pupae, effectively disrupting the disease lifecycle. Another trait, Varroa Sensitive Hygiene (VSH) is especially effective at targeting varroa mites. Dr. Spivak played a pivotal role in characterizing this behavior. We are proud to announce that we'll be selling Matt Winstead's bees again in Spring 2022! Matt owns Golden Rule Honeybee Farm! You will BEE happy with your BEES!
I live in a suburban neighborhood so I can't have bees right? WRONG! You don’t need a lot of land to have hives. That is a common misconception about beekeeping. All you need is a backyard with enough space for the hives themselves. The bees fly up to 3 miles a day for food and water. And they are not going to be a nuisance to your neighbors. Most of the time your neighbors aren’t even aware you have hives. Also, you are legally allowed to have 2 hives in your suburban backyard in most cities throughout Kansas and Missouri. Please check with your city to be sure of the ordinance.
Are your NUC frames only for deep boxes? Yes. Our NUC frames will not fit into a medium box, only a deep box will be able to hold the NUC frames.
Do your frames fit in the flow hive? Yes, they are the same dimensions. The only difference in a langstroth hive and a flow hive is the supers.
Will I get honey my first year? The short answer to this is maybe. If you start with a full hive in May, you're more likely to get honey in your first year, but everything depends on the nectar sources you are surrounded by and the weather conditions. Focus on hive management year one and honey will come by year two for sure!
How much time does it take to keep bees? You need a minimum of 2 hours a month to inspect 2 hives. You should be inspecting at least twice a month! When you purchase bees, it is your responsibility to take care of them. You cannot leave a hive in your yard and never get in it to inspect it. You don't need to pull every frame for an inspection, just make sure there are eggs during each inspection. If you see eggs, you know the Queen has been there at least in the last 3-4 days. The #1 thing I tell new beekeepers is to look for eggs! The Queen is sometimes very hard to find, she moves fast and can play a good game of hide-n-seek!
Can you make money from Beekeeping? Yes! After a hive has survived the winter, it can be split into possibly 3 hives in the Spring. You can sell these splits, (NUCS). You can also sell honey from your hives, or lip balm and lotion from your wax. So, yes...this hobby can pay for itself in time. What other hobby does that?!
As you are reading these and thinking, "wow, why are there so many policies for a bee business?!"...please understand that I had to make these policies due to 6 years of unfortunate experiences. :(
Policy# 1 There are no refunds for bee orders. My vendor is paid a deposit and that payment is based on your orders. If you have something come up and you can no longer afford your bees, you can transfer your purchase to another individual. It is not my responsibility to find a new owner for the bees you ordered.
Policy# 2 There are no refunds on classes. Once you reserve your spot for class, that seat is being held for you. Many times, I have a maximum occupancy on my classes due to room size. If I cancel due to weather, I will refund you or move you to another date.
Policy#3 Bee pickups! (This will be my longest written policy because it involves the safety and well-being of the bees. That is something I take very seriously!)
•Bees are ordered between October – April with a May pickup date. We always try for the first weekend of May for the NUCS and the second weekend of May for the HIVES, but everything is based on weather. I announce the official pickup date by April 15th. I post the official date on my website AND I post it on the Facebook group “The Kansas Bee Company Customers.” I give you a month notice to get your schedule worked out.
•Pickup dates are not optional or adjustable. I cannot hold onto your NUC or HIVE for an extended period of time. When the bees are ready, they are ready. If they sit in a NUC box or single deep box for too long, they will start the swarm process. And once the swarm process starts, it is very hard to stop.
•If you have plans that cannot be changed during your pickup date/time, I suggest you find a friend or family member to pick up your bees. There are no refunds provided if you cannot and/or do not show up to get your bees - no exceptions or arguments.
After you've picked up your bees, I provide a 48-hour window of time to replace them - with the presence of a queen cell. It is your responsibility to bring your bees back to Belton, Missouri for the exchange. * We do not discourage anyone to inspect their bees before they leave our property. *