Bees provide important resources in Vintage story. Using simple methods, bees can be tended, and their products harvested.
Finding Wild Bees
Finding wild bees can be difficult. Wild bees are a rare spawn in warm climates, but they don't spawn in climates that are too arid or too wet. The best way to find them is to turn the game sound all the way up and wander around in forested areas. Bees are often heard before they are seen. Keep listening for bees, and checking the trees in the area. Wild hives can be inside or suspended from a log.
Beehives spawn in climates where all three values in the following chart intersect:
|Parameter||Min. value||Max. value|
Capturing Wild Bees
Bees are captured using a skep. Players can view the size of the hive, number of flowers in range, and an estimate for the number of days until the hive swarms by pressing 'B' (block info) and mousing over the hive. The wild hive must reach a large population before it will divide and populate the skep.
Populating an empty skep
Place an empty skep within seven blocks of the wild beehive. If there are no flowers near the wild hive, the population will not increase enough to swarm. To increase the population, bees require at least five Flowers within seven blocks of the wild hive. Bees must explore their area to locate and feed on any newly placed flowers, but they will find these flowers over time.
The more flowers you place, the faster the process will go - for example, playing 100 flowers into the seven blocks vicinity, and the swarming will only take about three ingame hours. Note that this does not include the time the bees need to recognize the flowers! You can check by hovering over the hive to see if they found them.
Transporting a filled skep
Filled skeps can be transported in one of the four bag slots, instead of a backpack or basket. Once populated, pick up the skep. It will be placed into the empty bag slot and can be carried home. Breaking the skep will destroy the skep and might spawn a swarm of angry bees.
Placing a filled skep
Place the populated skep in a prepared apiary. First, select the skep in the backpack slot. This can be done by either holding the sprint and scrolling or holding it and pressing 1 through 4 (to select the empty backpack slot). Then place the skep on to a solid block.
Raccoons are mischievous creatures! Make sure to build a fence around your skeps so the honey is safe from naughty raccoons.
Bees search for flowers in a seven block range, in all directions. To reach a large population, bees need [5+3X] flowers, where X is the number of other skeps within their search range. Well fed populations of bees will split to fill additional empty skeps, or harvested when mature.
Propagating bee populations
Additional skeps can be filled from the original, allowing players to increase the number of skeps available for harvesting. Bees transfer to empty skeps placed within 7 blocks of a filled skep by the same process that bees are captured from a wild hive. As the population of the original skep grows, the bees will divide to populate nearby empty skep.
Optimized Skep Layout
The simplest layout for ensuring each skep has enough flowers is to place skeps 2 tiles apart and surround them with flowers. This pattern can be repeated indefinitely and each skep will have enough flowers to reach a large population.
As the bee population increases, they produce honeycomb. Over time, the entrance of the skep will change from a dull yellow to a bright yellow as the skep fills. When a player examines the populated skep, the block information will show that the skep has become "harvestable". At this point, breaking the skep (left mouse button) will provide honeycomb and some of the cattails used to make the skep. Pick up the harvested items and move out of the area.
Populations of bees will hibernate (stop swarming or producing honeycombs) at 0°C. Once the temperature reaches -10°C, all bee-related timers (swarm and production) will reset, and will only resume until the temperature rises above 0°C.
Though bees can be collected from the wild, they cannot be domesticated. There is always a chance that breaking the skep will spawn an angry bee swarm. One technique to avoid attacks from the angry swarm is to place straw dummies near the hives so the bees attack the decoys instead of players. If a player remains in the area of an angry swarm, bees may still attack even if a straw dummy is present. Also, make sure the skeps are not placed near animal pens, as angry bees will attack any nearby living thing, including the animals players are currently domesticating.
Honey & Wax
Honeycomb can be processed into honey and wax. First, place an empty fired bowl or bucket on the ground. Next, while holding the honeycomb, aim the cursor at the empty container and right click to "squeeze" the honey from the comb. This action will it with honey and the remaining wax will appear in the player's inventory. Each honeycomb yields 0.25 liters of honey and one wax. A bowl holds honey from one honeycomb portion, while a bucket holds honey from 40 honeycombs (10 liters), and a barrel holds 5 buckets (50 liters) of honey.
When eaten, Honey restores 0.5 health points. Honey can also be used to make jam, added to meals like porridge, or to craft healing poultices. Wax (stacks to 32) can be used to seal food crocks for long term food preservation, and crafted into a candles by placing three wax in a column in the crafting grid. Candles never burn out and can be placed on top of solid blocks or in chandeliers. Up to 9 candles can be placed on the same block and each candle added to the block increases the light level. Candles are also used to craft lanterns.
In this video tutorial you can see once again exactly how to raise a successful beekeeping.
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