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Author Topic: how can I find a beekeeper in my area?  (Read 5396 times)

NorthEssexsmallholding

  • Joined Dec 2010
how can I find a beekeeper in my area?
« on: February 28, 2011, 09:06:48 pm »
Just wondered if anyone knows how to go about finding a local beekeeper who might want to start a hive or hives on my smallholding.  Its something I want to learn myself but a woman told me recently that they are very in demand and the beekeeping courses are expensive. 

Anke

  • Joined Dec 2009
  • St Boswells, Scottish Borders
Re: how can I find a beekeeper in my area?
« Reply #1 on: March 03, 2011, 10:53:25 am »
You could contact the British Beekeepers association (I think thewir website of BBKA.org.uk or similar), and give them your area/postcode for the nearest group. There will be a fairly local one I am sure. Lots of them up here in Scotland.

Become a member and they will amost certainly have summer mtgs at poeple's apiaries, so you meet people and learn at the same time. Courses are usually throuth the winter, but I have only ever attended a one-day beginners course a my local group, and then read books and "shadowed" a beekeepers for a summer. Best thing to do. Stock is incredibly difficult to get hold of atm, lots of people resort to importing, but that is worse I think. Wait for a local nuc/swarm or when someone is giving up. If you can get second hand equipment make sure you disinfect it properly, some diseases spread like wildfire through equipment being sold.

You will probably need a beesuit to just go and visit apiaries, there are companies on www that sell good quality ones. An overall is best, but make sure you get at least a jacket with a hood attached, the ones that they sell as hats/veil only often let bees in (they are very good at finding small holes to crawl into and stings on your face will put you off beekeeping for life!). A pair of gloves is also advisable, but lots of poeple use rubber ones.

As to having someone else putting hives on your land, make sure they have insurance cover, and take into consideration public access (better if not next to a main walking route or busy road), but also security, as hives get stolen quite regularly. Hiding them behind a hedge is good, also painting a natural colour (not brilliant white) helps. I would not put my hives anywhere else but on my land.

OhLaLa

  • Joined Sep 2010
Re: how can I find a beekeeper in my area?
« Reply #2 on: March 03, 2011, 11:47:15 am »
Try emailing the secretary for your local branch.

This is the link for the Essex Beekeepers Assoc:

http://www.ebka.org/

If you are very North in Essex you might find Suffolk Beekeepers Assoc closer:

http://www.suffolkbeekeepers.co.uk/

 :bee:

Daisy-at-the-dairy

  • Joined Jan 2011
Re: how can I find a beekeeper in my area?
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2011, 12:31:49 am »
Don't be put off by someone else's view of the cost of courses until you've checked for yourself.  My local BKA runs a beginner's course, 6x2hour sessions in winter, followed by summer meetings and mentoring at one of our teaching apiaries if you decide to take it up.  For this we currently charge 60, and I can't think of many other ways to get an evening out for a tenner let alone all the rest.  We even serve tea and biscuits!

I'm not trying to flog you our services as we aren't in your area (though we are in the expensive South-east) and prices do vary.  Just don't give up before checking the facts.

if you offer your land as an out-apiary, you will be a popular person as plenty of people are looking for sites.  All members of the British Beekeeper's Association (BBKA) will have appropriate insurance and your local BKA will be able to make the necessary introductions.  Find them via the BBKA website which I believe is in fact britishbee.org.uk.  That's the starting point if you decide you'd like to try it yourself as well.

Good luck and thanks for your interest in bees and beekeeping.


LASDER99

  • Joined Apr 2011
Re: how can I find a beekeeper in my area?
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2011, 03:12:53 pm »
Don't be put off by someone else's view of the cost of courses until you've checked for yourself.  My local BKA runs a beginner's course, 6x2hour sessions in winter, followed by summer meetings and mentoring at one of our teaching apiaries if you decide to take it up.  For this we currently charge 60, and I can't think of many other ways to get an evening out for a tenner let alone all the rest.  We even serve tea and biscuits!
I'm not trying to flog you our services as we aren't in your area (though we are in the expensive South-east) and prices do vary.  Just don't give up before checking the facts.
if you offer your land as an out-apiary, you will be a popular person as plenty of people are looking for sites.  All members of the British Beekeeper's Association (BBKA) will have appropriate insurance and your local BKA will be able to make the necessary introductions.  Find them via the BBKA website which I believe is in fact britishbee.org.uk.  That's the starting point if you decide you'd like to try it yourself as well.

Good luck and thanks for your interest in bees and beekeeping.

I couldnt agree more -- even if you fancy the idea, it is quite different in practice so a course is the best start - particularly socially, as most beekeepers seem to keep something else as well -- my local association is more of a chicken and goat fanciers convention !

Yes it can cost if you are impatient and want everything new and now --- but then if you are that impatient, probably bees are not for you  :)

With so many people starting out over the last few years, there will be a rush of second-hand equipment coming through soon, and with all the extra inexperienced keepers around, some more swarms as well  :o

So startup may not cost that much at all if you take time over it...

However, do not underestimate the time they can absorb so if you dont have much time then making a small area available for a local beekeeper will be very gratefully received --

Best of Luck

 

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