I need your help.

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Iddee, Nov 3, 2009.

  1. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Our local beek club is trying to set up a beginner's course. We need help in setting it up. We plan to have 4 sessions of 2 hours each.

    Example:

    1... Bee anatomy and development

    2...equipment and supplies

    3...obtaining, installing, and first year maintenance.

    4... Diseases, pests, and hazards

    Now I would like a few replies numbered 1 through 4, maybe even with abc sub categories, listing what you feel should be taught.
    Thanks
     
  2. Walt B

    Walt B New Member

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    This was my first year with bees, so, just what I think. I would blend the bee anatomy into the other sections and have a separate section on harvesting honey.

    1...equipment and supplies
    a. what's necessary
    b. why
    c. what you don't need
    d. weave in some bee anatomy like stingers, barbs, life cycle as related to equipment

    2...obtaining, installing, and first year maintenance
    a. how to order
    b. what to order
    c. how to hive the bees
    d. weave in some more bee anatomy, life cycle of types, drone, worker, quen differences
    e. feeding
    f. examinations

    3...Diseases, pests, and hazards
    a. prevention and treatment of mites
    b. prevention and treatment of small hive beetles
    c. discussion of the broods
    d. weave anatomy into the discussions: trachial tubes and the like

    4...yummy, yummy honey for the tummy
    a. talk about pollen and nectar and what is honey
    b. how to harvest
    c. getting bees out of the supers
    d. methods of extraction

    Longer than I wanted, and less detail than I hoped, but opinions are like elbows...everybody's got a couple. :roll:

    Walt
     

  3. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    Exactly what I wanted. Thanks.... Now for a few more.
     
  4. Omie

    Omie New Member

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    If they are beginners, then you should have a little part about bee stings:
    allergies, fear of being stung, gentleness of honeybees, best ways to not provoke bees, protective measures like smoker, gloves, and veil. Beginners tend to be very nervous about the stinging aspect of bees. Worth a little time early in your course.

    Also you might want to mention the existence of other hive designs like top bar which can pretty easily and cheaply be built at home by handy people.
     
  5. G3farms

    G3farms New Member

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    Sounds like a good chore, but very doable for an old hand at the trade.
    With this being geared toward beginers it is back to the basics for sure. Don't go too deep, just hit the high spots and stay the course for basics.

    1. Bee anatomy and development
    a. queen, worker and drone..........need pics and explain what their rolles are in the hive.
    b. life cycle of each......need pics of egg to hatched bee along with the different time lines.
    c. queen cells...........this needs an extra little bump above and beyond from above, show different locations of cells, how there can only be one queen and they fight to the death.
    d. the life and times of the worker bee.........from hatching to field work, be sure to include the honey stomach and pollen baskets.
    e. the life and times of the drone ...............from hatch to mating or being kicked out in the fall of the year.
    f. the life and times of the queen................from hatch, to mating, to daily routine of laying eggs, swarming, and winter slow down.

    2. Equipment and supplies
    a. hive boxes and frames, bottom boards (solid and screened), inner covers, and tops. you cold talk about the different types of hives but the most common is the lang and the equipment is the most easy to find, where as top bar hives would be the cheapest route to go for a low budget.
    b. frames and foundation.........wood, plastic, wax, starter strips, etc.
    c. how to assemble all of the components and different sizes, don't forget to mention bee space.
    d. smoker, smoker fuel, hive tools, protective clothing, epi pen, queen excluders
    e. extractors, uncapping tools, crush and strain, bottling.

    3. Obtaining, installing and 1st year maint.
    a. buying an established colony, swarm catching, cut outs, bee trees
    b. feeding and different types of feeders
    c. bee food..........sugar syrup, hfcs, honey, pollen
    d. supering up and harvesting the crop.

    more to come it is bed time now.

    G3
     
  6. BjornBee

    BjornBee New Member

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    iddee,
    I have my own classes over at the farm. They are on the website.

    Many beekeepers after attending the local club "intro" bee class, then take mine. Mine is thrown in an actual bee yard and NOT classroom oriented. It is hands on, with group participation. And most people all say if they would of taken mine first, they would not of wasted their money on the first one.

    You can talk about counting mites all day long, how to inspect a hive, and show big glossy pictures of queen cells....and nothing will beat the in the feild experience.

    I'll see about pulling out an outline of the class for you.

    My point was just to encourage a class outside in a beeyard, where beekeepers will learn so much more than the standard classes that many associations give sitting in a room.
     
  7. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    as a lot of school teacher types know, you will need to whittle down the scope of each section or you will never fit the topic into a two hour time slot.

    we do a bee school twice in the spring here with the bee club in Brenham, Tx (home of zz tops and blue bell ice cream) and the folks tell me that the hands on part of the program made their initial inspection so much easier (mentally I assume).

    some prior newbees have also suggested that a short glossary of bee terms is helpful (nucs this and splits that is confusing language for most of the new folk).

    I myself would not get so strung out on the bee bioliogy (anatomy and development). I would likely work that in where appropriate in the remainder of the class. I would also not get heavily into disease or pest since that topic seems to be endless in scope (and its a downer man). when we (the club) gets to the point of breaking down a hive I casually mention what positive and negative things to look for in the hive and what the negative qualities usually suggest in regards to bee disease and/or pest. last year we had a bit of starvation in the hives we opened up and this worked as an excellent example of how starvation was different but somewhat similar to foul brood.

    ps... fuzzybeekeeper (on the other site) is the president of our bee club and is also a former (recently retired) school teacher. I would think he would be a good contact for your questions. he tends to be a bit more formal in his presentation than myself. being an old english teacher he also doesn't much appreciate my brutual use of the english language.
     
  8. Hobie

    Hobie New Member

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    My $.02:

    2. Equipment and supplies:
    Mention the option of "all mediums" and the benefits/disadvantages over the traditional. In retrospect, I wish I had been aware of this option.
     
  9. rast

    rast New Member

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    Sorry, I can't give you the 1234, ABC like you asked. That looks like it has been very well taken care of. It's just the details of the above posts that need to be determined and just as important, how they are presented. As a former night class vocational teacher I can tell you that the speakers ability to grab and hold attention to the subject is very important. The speaker should not be afraid to show personality while presenting the subject. BJorns class grabs and holds their intrest, your club, this time of year, may not be able to do that. The instructor should have materials at hand to be able to jot down notes with an "I'll get back to you on that" on some questions and do it. It may be next class before he/she does. It helps give the student a reason to come back and shows an interest in them personally when you address the question. It can also help control the time factor as Tec mentioned.
    The instructor needs to be able to make them want more.
     
  10. Mama Beek

    Mama Beek New Member

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    I think the classes we took were 2 hours and for 6 weeks. It could sure stand to be longer..... we went from knowing nothing to having bees and worrying about how little we had learned!

    of course my 3 might think I'm just mean by saying such a thing :twisted:
     
  11. XLB

    XLB New Member

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    not that mean mama beek, the classes were alot of fun! thanks for hauling all of us up that way every week. :D
     
  12. alleyyooper

    alleyyooper New Member

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    Then there are some who will put syrup feeders on after installing honey supers two years in a row. Or leacve the second deep sitting in the shed all summer and wonder why the mentor is hot under the color when doing the fall inspection.

    :( Al
     
  13. Charles

    Charles New Member

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  14. Walt B

    Walt B New Member

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    Charles, thanks for the link. :goodpost:

    There's a local guy who thinks I'm an "expert". After I give him the link, he'll think I'm a "god"! :D

    Walt
     
  15. Charles

    Charles New Member

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    Your welcome Walt, it's a good one. And I bow to your holy-ness :bow: :bow: :bow: :rolling: