Beekeeping had its origins in honey hunting—the opportunistic stealing of honey from wild honey bee nests. True beekeeping began when humans started providing artificial cavities within which the bees could build comb for the queen to lay her eggs and the workers could process honey. By 2450 , the Egyptians had developed sophisticated apiculture, and, within two millennia, beekeeping with horizontal hives had spread throughout the Mediterranean. During Europe's Middle Ages, honey and wax became important commodities for trade, and beekeeping in skep, log, box, and tree hives flourished to meet the demand. Other species of honey bees contributed to the development and spread of beekeeping in Asia beginning around 300 . Meanwhile, beekeeping evolved independently in Mesoamerica with the stingless bee , as documented by archaeological finds and written accounts that survived Spanish conquest.


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