A beginner course is your foundation to getting started, keeping your bees healthy and getting connected to the beekeeping community.
So, you want to get into beekeeping and you have done some research online, maybe you have read a popular book like Beekeeping for Dummies or Beekeeping in Western Canada (Recommended by Hiveworld buy here). Although that’s a good place to begin, it’s not the only information you will need to get started in beekeeping.
Beekeeping can be an enjoyable, interesting and challenging hobby or business. Every year is different as it is heavily dependent on weather and crops. No beekeeping book alone can prepare you for what experience lies ahead. To really help save the bees and make a difference, there is a lot to learn. A beekeeping course is a good place to start.
Depending on where you live, you may need to take a beginner beekeeping course. For example, if you want to give urban beekeeping a try in the city of Edmonton, the City requires you to take a two-day beekeeping course that provides you with a certificate. Your province may also have requirements like registering your bees.
These courses cover basic beekeeping information, local regulations (municipal and provincial) and more. It provides you with the foundation to get started in beekeeping.
Most beginner beekeeping courses will cover the following:
Got questions? You have a chance to be with a bee expert and learn face-to-face from them. Your instructor will share the basic beekeeping information as well as their own personal experiences as a beekeeper. Sometimes the best part of a beekeeping course is the stories an instructor shares when asked the right questions.
Beekeeping costs a minimum of $500 to get started (including bees and equipment). In the long run, a course will help you save money and your bees! If you want to keep bees and have them flourish- you need to know how to do beekeeping. To do beekeeping well takes time, and you need to gain a lot of knowledge and experience to get there.
You will learn universal information about beekeeping as well as how beekeeping works in your location and climate. Beekeeping varies depending on the weather and the types of crops/blooms you have in your area. A course in your area will have information specific to what you can expect during your beekeeping season. For example, did you know in Alberta we see one of the biggest bee population explosions during the summer months?
As always, we are here to answer questions and help you out. March is only seven weeks away! There is still lots of time to take a course and learn more. See our beekeeping course offerings here. We also have an online course if you can make it to a classroom!
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If you are a beginner beekeeper, knowing if there are enough honey stores can be hard to figure out on your very first overwintered hive check. The simplest way to check if there are enough stores is to gently lift your hive from the bottom board (without disturbing the hive too much). If it is very light and easy to lift, you DO NOT have enough stores.