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Noncommercial beekeeping sees growth in Montana

Non-commercial bee keeping sees growth in Montana. Photo : NBC Montana Staff
Non-commercial bee keeping sees growth in Montana. Photo : NBC Montana Staff
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Many people are afraid of bees -- they sting and can cause allergic reactions. But we talked to a Livingston ranch hand who loves them.

“They are always doing something new,” said Hazel’s Honey owner Andrew Bauer. “There is always some new behavior I have never seen before. We had an observation hive, and I could just sit there and watch them for hours. They’re just really neat.”

Noncommercial beekeeping jumped from 94 beekeepers in 2017 to 453 in 2021 making it a fast growing hobby in the Treasure State.

Bauer believes out-of-staters play a part in this new trend.

“Their seasonal allergies are different now,” said Bauer. “They say that honey helps with that. I don’t have allergies so I couldn’t say, but I know that honey does alleviate swelling and inflammation, so I could see where it would work.”

Bauer also sells his bees to anyone who may be interested in starting a hive of their own.

Queen bees are sold for $50 apiece, but the honey is where the real fun is.

“Although bees are just small little insects, they work quickly, especially in large numbers. Bauer says it only takes his bees a day to fill up one of these large trays with fresh and delicious honey.”

For more information on Hazel’s Honey in Livingston, click here.

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