According to Chinh et al. (1995)  and cited by Guerin (2019) , rafter beekeeping includes a rafter, which is the trunk or branch of a tree, around 2 m in length and 10 to 20 cm in diameter supported by two vertical poles (Figure below). Resembling a branch of a tree, a rafter attracts migrating Apis dorsata to build a nest beneath it (see also chapter Other types of gaining bee products.
Guerin published a training manual describing sustainable ways of rafter beekeeping in a WWF report of 2019. The manual can be downloaded from the WWF website (link in the references of this page) .
The document includes
- basic requirements for raftering (choice of location, availability of bee forage and locally available materials and bee species)
- rafter design and construction (wood selection, choice of size, manipulating of the environment near the rafter, time-management)
- alternative rafter designs (inspired by different countries)
- harvesting and processing techniques for honey and wax from rafters
- Chinh, P.H., Minh, N.H., Thai, P.H., and Tan, N.Q. (1995) Raftering - A traditional technique for honey and wax production from Apis dorsata in Vietnam. Article In Bees for Development Journal.
- Guerin, E. (2019). Rafter Beekeeping. Sustainable Management with Apis dorsata Training Manual. WWF Report 2019. Download Url (last access 06.09.2021): https://www.wwf.or.th/en/scp/upcoming_event_/reports_/rafter_beekeeping