Introduction to Beekeeping

The course is aimed at those with serious intentions of becoming beekeepers, but with little or no knowledge of beekeeping. The Course runs on alternate Wednesday evenings each month from February to April, starting at 7.00pm.

The apiary sessions are held in Hampton Lucy at the end of April (TBC) on Sunday afternoons from 1.30pm.

The topics covered for each week are as follows:

Week  1 What are Honey Bees?  The Importance of Beekeeping.  Equipment, Tools and Clothing.
Week 2 The Hive/Nest of Honey Bees.  Looking at Hives.  The Colony – Who’s in it, the different Castes, their Development and Behaviour.
Week 3 Hive Inspections.  Swarming.  Bee Stings.
Week 4 Honey Bee Health – Pests & Diseases.  Healthy Colonies.  Integrated Pest Management.
Week 5 Siting an Apiary.  The Beekeeper’s year.  General guidance. Introduction to Honey and Hive Products.                                       How to access use of the Association Loan Equipment.        Location of Practical Sessions.   Future progression in Beekeeping.
Week 6 Practical hands-on session at the Association Apiary in Hampton Lucy
Week 7 Practical hands-on session at the Association Apiary in Hampton Lucy

The cost of the Course, which also includes automatic membership of Stratford-upon-Avon & District Beekeepers’ Association*,  will be £100 per person OR  £150 per household.  Payment due at the start of Week 1.

*Membership of the Association automatically includes British Beekeepers Association Membership (BBKA) and Bee Diseases Insurance (BDI) covering up to three colonies of Bees.

Advice and help will be available on the procurement of bees and equipment. We have an agreement with a local hive supplier for special prices, and we expect to be able to provide bees for those who join the Association from local swarms and/or from the Association’s apiary at a reasonable cost. The sessions will be informal, with time for discussion and questions, and ongoing support is available for members throughout the year. Monthly meetings at the Association’s apiary during the year enable continuing practical experience to be obtained in the company of experienced beekeepers. The Association has a well stocked library and an equipment loan scheme for items such as honey extractors.

The following dates have been scheduled for this course: Wednesdays 14 & 28 February, Wednesdays 13 & 27 March, and Wednesday 10 April 2024. The Practical Sessions at the Association Apiary on Sundays 21st & 28th April 2024   To be confirmed nearer the time.  As these depend on weather conditions, we may have to be flexible with these dates.

*Bookings are already being accepted, so we’re quite happy for you to reserve your place if you wish and will keep in touch meanwhile. (Payment at Wk 1)

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