1. Introduction

Honey bees are one of the most studied insects, primarily due to their crucial role in agriculture and the ecosystem and their high economic value. In light of the concern over global honey bee decline experienced in many regions of the world, and with their economic importance in mind, funding has been readily available for research. The honey bee is a fascinating research model, its positive perception in general and its eusociality and importance for the food security and eco-system services makes it a model organism of choice. Therefore it is not surprising that a huge variety of research methods have been employed, evaluating and investigating different aspects of this organism, e.g. their interactions with parasites and pests (Volume 2 of the BEEBOOK), the behavioural and chemical ecology of this superorganism as well as aspects of breeding and population dynamics (Volume 1 of the BEEBOOK), to name a few. Since the interest in honey bees reaches from applied to fundamental research, numerous basic techniques are used across all disciplines. In this chapter, we will present various methods on recording basic demographic parameters like estimating number of dead bees, the weighing of a colony or of an individual, using a haemocytometer as well as pollen trapping. In addition, we describe ways of marking queens, how to inject, immobilise, kill and store honey bees, and how to obtain brood and adults of known age. Finally we discuss how to locate wild honey bee colonies, estimate honey bee colony density, create multiple queen colonies, and the digitally monitor brood development via location recognition.