I have been keeping honeybees for over 40 years. My mother kept several beehives when I was growing up and I started becoming involved in beekeeping as a young child. I can still remember watching a swarm of bees fly away and trying to keep up with my mom who was running to see where they were flying.
When I went away to College I volunteered at the Thames Science Center in New London Connecticut and helped take care of their honeybees and their observation hive. I often went into local elementary schools to bring in a observation hive and to talk to the kids about honeybees.
During my College years I continued to take care of several beehives at my parents house and continued to be activity involved in beekeeping. It was during these years I first saw a Kerkoff beehive at a beekeeping conference. This is a double walled 2 queen hive that is very interesting. At that stage of my life the hive was too expensive to purchase but I took notes and had pictures of the Kerkoff hive. Many years later I purchased one and have built several more and continue to use some of these hives.
In college I was a zoology major and my senior thesis involved trying to determine how many drones mated with the queen based on analysis of the worker bees with electrophoresis. It was an interesting project and I was able to combine my love of honeybees with my school work.
Since then I have continued to keep honeybees with anywhere between 4 and 30 colonies of honeybees. Currently I have about 20 colonies in 4 locations in Boulder County. During my 40+ years of beekeeping I have seen many changes including Mites and CCD (Colony Collapse Disorder). Winter losses used to be in the 5% range and now are often closer to 30%. I am still learning many new things about honeybees and beekeeping. Honeybees never cease to amaze me.