Those interested in becoming a beekeeper or improving their beekeeping skills are encouraged to enroll in a series of courses at the University of California, Davis.
The courses are taught by bee scientists at the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. The first course begins Saturday, Feb. 13.
Course instructors include extension agriculturist Elina Lastro Niño; staff research associate Bernardo Niño; facility manager/staff research associate Charley Nye; and graduate student Tricia Bohls. All courses are open to the public and are taught at the Laidlaw facility, located on Bee Biology Road, west of the UC Davis central campus.
The courses are:
“Planning Ahead for Your First Hive:” A short course on Feb. 13 for those with little or no beekeeping experience. There is a $95 registration fee covers the cost of course materials (including a hive tool), lunch, and refreshments.
“Working Your Colonies”: A short course on Saturday, Feb. 20 for novice beekeepers, or those who already have a colony and want to develop more skills. There is a $150 registration fee covers the cost of course materials, lunch, and refreshments.
“Queen-Rearing Techniques” with two separate sessions: Saturday and Sunday, March 12-13 and Saturday and Sunday, March 19-20. This course is for beekeepers who want to learn how to rear their own queens or learn bee breeding.
The $350 registration fee for each queen-rearing session covers the cost of course materials (including a set of grafting equipment: grafting frame with bars, plastic queen cups and a grafting tool), breakfast, lunch and refreshments on the days of the short course.
Participants will have the opportunity to learn about and practice multiple methods for queen rearing. At the end of the course, participants will be able to check their grafting success and local participants can take home queen cells from the workshop.
They also will learn techniques to assess Varroa mite loads and to evaluate hygienic behavior.
All participants in the Feb. 13-March 20 courses should bring their own bee suits or veils. They are also responsible for obtaining their own lodging. See map for directions. For more information, contact Bernardo Niño at [email protected] or call 530-380-BUZZ (2899).
This story is reprinted by permission of the author. Her full blog post is online at http://ucanr.edu/blogs/blogcore/postdetail.cfm?postnum=19673