About

2010
05.07

McCartney Taylor is the name and I plan to change the world. Or at least a small part of it. I’m targeting about 30 square km of North Central Tanzania. But I’m getting ahead of myself.

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I’m an engineer by training. Electrical undergrad, masters in Petroleum Engineering. However, I didn’t practice long as an engineer, I went into business for myself pretty early.  I run companies of Geo-spatial databases for Oil and Gas exploration, another for GIS training, and others. Austin, Texas is my home, full of music and playful nuttiness. A place easy to forget the rest of the world.

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Every year or two I go on expeditions. My main hobby is meteorite recovery, known as meteoritics. I’ve got another website about that called outofabluesky.com.

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It was on an expedition in east Africa in 2006 that I got the bug for beekeeping. In a remote village near a meteorite fall zone, I was staying in a hut with a villager and I was asking about the sideways logs in the trees. The villager looked at me and said “You don’t know? That’s a beehive!” as if I was the dumbest SOB on the planet.  I reflected on that for a while and was amused that given all my technical prowess and advantages I inherit from being an American in an upper class social tier, I hadn’t a clue what that long thing was in the tree. That was their tech on their turf, and it kept them in honey.  That particular piece of tech was merely a log hive, one that must be destroyed to get to the honey.

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So I thought, “Hey, if I could teach these guys better beekeeping skills, I bet I could improve the quality of life for the entire region.”  And so began my downward spiral into the depths of the belly of bee-lore. From my research, I discovered that the Top Bar Hive was the hive for the poorest of the villages, and that Langs would be good for the better villages. A $80 hive has no place in a region where the average income is $220/year, where I was. But a $5 hive, hey, we got something there.

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This is end of my beekeeping beginnings. It is not the beginnings of my end. I’ll keep you posted, and I’ll get videos of the village the next time I go.

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11 Responses to “About”

  1. Krista says:

    Hi there, are you still on your quest to improve Tanzanian beekeeping? I’m interested!
    get in touch!

  2. mccartney says:

    Yes! Improving the world, 1 hive at a time.

  3. [...] Taylor over at Learning Beekeeping has the best description of the feel-good nature of the Kiva experience. He’s a member of [...]

  4. [...] media are a good alternative when the bees aren’t near.  And there’s none better than McCartney Taylor’s website and YouTube [...]

  5. [...] media are a good alternative when the bees aren’t near.  And there’s none better than McCartney Taylor’s website and YouTube [...]

  6. Ken Graham says:

    Taylor, you have an awesome website and I have thoroughly enjoyed your videos on YouTube. I am Ken Graham, Video Engineer, Coffee Roaster and budding beekeeper. I am lucky to be under the guidance of a 3′rd generation beekeeper here in the Napa Valley. I have family in Texas and my grandmother was born in Sherman. I lived in Oklahoma City for 4 years (hope you won’t hold that against me..lol) and have been around beekeeping all of my life and now am taking the plunge..at 49!

    Thank you for a great and informative website and if you ever want to try my Air Roasted Coffee’s, as they say in Texas, “Give me a Hollar.” -Ken Graham

  7. Tony Gant says:

    McCartney, I found you on youtube. Built two Top Bar hives I thought would be good for plants around my house. Their painted up and ready for bees, I am going to try to trap a swarm. Today is July 10th. I am thinking this will get me ready for spring 2014. I should probably plan on feeding them in winter assuming I am fortunate enough to get a swarm…?

    BTW, you are very entertaining on your videos. I need to figure out where to get shirts like you. TFBM hasn’t got a clue on how to dress. Anyway, thanks for the lessons on youtube.

    One more thing…why am I doing this besides my plants…I want healthy bees, the satisfaction of caring for a hive that produces local honey, and a mark on my mancard that says I’m cool courageous bee guys too!

    Tony – Katy, Texas

  8. Great information!

    I am impressed with your site and helpful hints regarding bees. I own a ranch in far western oklahoma, where the south canadian river borders us to the north and east. I have stumbled on bee hives out there by first hearing them, then looking up, generally spotting them in various trees… Now I want to build a bee trap, or traps…20? Then hopefully I can begin the harvest of some of the best locust, sand plum, wild grape, persimmon powered honey on this planet…I have been told that they do good pollination on these plants and I was wondering if the sage, black jack, alfalfa, vetch, etc…..was useful to the bees also? I cant wait to start building traps (thanks to your information), and trying my luck at this sport…..I think I am already hooked….

    Thanks again..

    JBM

  9. Chris Barnes says:

    Hello from Aggieland (yeah, I’m one of those).

    I’m a brand new beekeeper (just did my first swarm capture tonight). I love your videos – which brings out a question. In your video titled “How to build a Bait Hive / Swarm Trap and get Free Bees ” (uploaded Jan 2010 – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=na3owKhF9m4), you give the dimensions for a swarm trap.

    My (maybe) stupid question is: I built some 5 frame (deep) Nucs from the plans on the Central Texas Beekeepers facebook page. Assuming I made the opening the correct size – is the box itself the right size (to be honest, I don’t know how big “30 liters” is)?

  10. Katrin says:

    Hi Taylor,
    as I am beekeeping in Europe/Germany I would like to share some experiences with you down in Africa – Tansania. Are you still in this subject? I have a friend in Kenya who is very much interested in keeping bees …
    Please contact me if you are interested in sharing experiences.

    THX
    Katrin

  11. Arnaud says:

    Great site, I worked in west coast of Africa for 3 years love it there. My non profit http://www.ffiusa.org (check it out) does work in kenya. One question for you how do you feel about painting the beehive ?? good or not good or not necessary ?? let me know.
    Cheers
    Arnaud Bourgeois from CT, grew up in Corsica!!!

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