We have decided to take up Beekeeping as a hobby.
When we moved out of the city, part of our reasoning was to have a bit of a hobby farm. We wanted to have a dog but I don't beleive in having one unless you have lots of room. Also, being more independent, living off the grid, all those things appealed to me. So anything that helps prepare for the Zombie Apocalyse is of interest to me.
Why Bees? Unfortunately, the left wing wife is a bit squemish when it comes to the harvesting part of farming. I am no expert (we both grew up in the suburbs), but the point rasing your own food is to eat it. The wife wants to have all kinds of animals but she refuses to eat them. I am not having a herd of cows or sheep just to watch them die of old age. That is a pretty expensive (and tasty) herd of pets. We are not so rich that we can afford to feed all these animals and not get anything back. We already have two children, I am not adding more unproductive animals to the mix.
So why bees? They are a compromise. They are relativley cheap (I spent less than $500 for everything needed to get started) and it is not such a big deal if I screw up and kill them all. They need some care, but not as much as many animals, and if you neglect them the most likely result is no honey, as opposed to a stinking cow carcass.
And if we get our place designated as a hobby farm, I can cut my property taxes by half.