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Imkerij De Nesse


Imkerij De Nesse

In the middle of the polder, along the IJssel River, lies the beekeeping farm of Gerrit and Franca Burger. Starting as a hobby in 2007 with 2 bee colonies, it has grown to about 60 colonies with a few million bees that make delicious honey. Beekeeping de Nesse owes its name to the Nesse polder, the area where the family lives together with the bees.

Gerrit and Franca Burger are Beekeeping de Nesse.

Gerrit primarily focuses on beekeeping.

He dotes on the bees and ensures they are content. Franca's activities are quite varied. From processing the honey and beeswax to providing education and workshops to various groups. Together with her, you can get involved in making something tasty or crafting a beautiful beeswax candle.

The Bee Colonies of Beekeeping de Nesse

It all started with 2 bee colonies in 2007. Beekeeping de Nesse has now grown to about sixty colonies with approximately three million bees that make delicious honey. The bees primarily live in wooden beehives, known as Langstroth hives, spread across the Krimpenerwaard. These consist of a base with a landing board and entrance, topped with brood and honey chambers.

Additionally, there is also a Top Bar Hive. This is a horizontal hive where bees build their own comb. The beauty of a Top Bar Hive is that you can safely observe the bees up close through a window.

Lifecycle of the Honeybee

During the winter, the bees cluster together and keep each other warm, known as the winter cluster. As temperatures outside the hive gradually increase, the first worker bees venture out in search of the first snowdrop. As the days lengthen, they increasingly venture out to collect fresh pollen. One of the first plants to bloom on the grounds of Beekeeping de Nesse is the willow, which helps the colonies regain strength quickly after winter.

As spring arrives and the fruit begins to bloom, the queen increases her egg production. With favorable weather and sufficient forage, this number can reach up to 1500 eggs per day. The workers begin building new combs where the queen can lay her eggs. They also collect pollen to feed the larvae. After three weeks, the first young summer bees are born.

End of April

By then, all the winter bees have disappeared, replaced by summer bees. The colony continues to grow significantly.

During May/June

The colony has grown so large that it is ready to swarm. Swarming is the natural way bees reproduce.

Since the Nesse polder is almost entirely grassland in the summer months, the hives are moved to various locations in the Krimpenerwaard and the Green Heart during the season. This way, they produce different types of honey from the immediate area.

End of August

Once the honey is extracted, the colonies are prepared for winter. It is checked whether there is enough food in the hive for the bees to survive the winter. This process is called wintering and should be completed by the end of September.

August is also the month of the “drone slaughter.” Drone slaughter is actually a misnomer because drones are rarely actually killed by the workers. First, the drones are no longer fed. They weaken and are eventually dragged out of the hive by the worker bees.


The winter bees are born. Winter bees are the bees that help the colony through the winter. They live longer because they are pampered more in the autumn and have less to do. They burn the honey in their bodies by vibrating their wing muscles. By vibrating, the bees ensure that in the middle of the winter cluster, the queen and her young larvae stay at a comfortable temperature. This allows a new cycle to begin in the spring.

Direct in contact with Imkerij de Nesse?

Ijsseldijk Noord 251
2935 BR, Ouderkerk aan den Ijssel

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