Essential beekeeping course!
Theoretical and practical program
My goals :
Transmit to you simple but bee-friendly beekeeping practices, tested for several years by pioneers of natural beekeeping.
Allow you to collaborate with your bees without using pharmacy and chemistry.
Give you the necessary tools to avoid bee mortality at the end of winter because in France, beekeeping has a mortality rate of around 30 to 50%. It is time to react and analyze why!
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Misconceptions about beekeeping
If you want to buy this training, it is because beekeeping is a subject that interests you, or at least intrigues you. But before you get started for good, you may still have a few last questions or misconceptions that are holding you back.
Is beekeeping a complex and technical activity?
With the development of modern beekeeping, all its high-tech equipment and techniques that seek to artificially increase the productivity and longevity of colonies, it is easy to believe that beekeeping is inherently a complicated activity.
However, if we return to a natural beekeeping, which does not waste its energy in wanting to modify or counter nature, but which on the contrary intelligently takes advantage of the natural behavior of the colonies, we realize that beekeeping is a easy activity. No need for fancy equipment. And it is enough to understand the natural functioning of bees, colonies, predators and parasites to act at best.
And this is the objective of this training: to make you understand the main principles to make you autonomous and adaptable, and not to transmit to you 1001 unnecessarily complex techniques.
Will beekeeping take up a lot of my time?
This is the fabulous thing about beekeeping: you can devote a small handful of hours to it per week, or choose to devote an infinite amount of time to it, in observation, optimization, ancillary work …
The more your practice evolves, the more time you devote to it, of course, but it's all a matter of personal choice!
Does beekeeping require large areas?
It is certain that you need a piece of garden to install beehives. Ask your town hall to find out about the local legal specificities. Either way, bees are just asking you for a home. They will harvest their crops alone in the surrounding resources. Another possibility, more and more appreciated by the times which run of decline of the bee, is to place your hives on the ground of someone else, against some pots of honey... For that you can pass an advertisement, or speak directly with the owners of the area.
Does beekeeping cost?
It is indeed very easy to be tempted by the innovations offered by hardware manufacturers. Often useless or even ineffective, these innovations are created to respond to the law of supply and demand. If we stopped buying them, the majority of these “essential” products would cease to exist!
In beekeeping, it is quite possible to practice with versatile, efficient, resistant and above all simple equipment. Enough to spend a large starting budget, to favor quality at a certain price, that the cheap which always remains too high that your hive after 2 years is good to pass to the chimney. This is the price to pay to keep the material for a long time! In addition, by maintaining your colonies from one year to the next thanks to the principles and methods of natural beekeeping, you will avoid a significant expense that many beekeepers incur:
the redemption of new swarms each year.
Finally, selling your production, if only in your close entourage, is easy and legal with a siret number. You will therefore be able to amortize your investments and have a surplus by selling your honey at the right price (profitable) and not the market price set by wholesalers and company. This will allow you to maintain or replace your equipment.
Morning program after coffee
I'm not going to load your head with endless charts and theories. You will understand, I do not use computers. But around a table in front of a good coffee, I discuss with you my own experiences, on what works in natural beekeeping without waffling. It is therefore necessary to take notes. All your questions will be welcome and I will try to answer them in a simple and logical way. The internships are for me a way of transmitting precise gestures to you, by teaching you all the techniques that I use in my natural beekeeping.
My internships are based on two axes.
This familiarity with the world of bees and the learning of the good gestures seen in the morning during the theory and the exercises on empty hives. We review the way to apprehend a colony or a swarm. Bees and the law "What to do, how to do it and where to do it". Handling of the jamb frame.
In the afternoon at the apiary you put into practice what we saw in the morning. You work on my hives and get to know my colonies.
You want to start in beekeeping, I invite you to do two internships.
Year 1: Beginner course to familiarize yourself with bees and the course to prepare colonies for wintering for trainees who want to start immediately after the beginner course.
Year 2: Bee awakening course and apiary management course. An additional but important training course in the practice of artificial swarming.
Practice at the apiary in the afternoon
An internship for what benefit!
Winterization preparation course
you will acquire important knowledge to prevent your colonies from dying during the winter. There are essentials to know to lower the mortality rate to the lowest. Varroa control, reserve assessment and colony balancing.
The bee awakening stage
We are going to see how to make your candy, your protein syrup and the manufacture of mother tincture of propolis so that you are independent in all that you give to your bees. This is important to control all of what you give to your colonies.
The apiary maintenance and development stage
We are going to review the biological cycle of bees. We will see the division technique to produce natural swarms for your apiary. What to take into account to preserve the genetics of your bees and avoid the pitfalls of hybridization.
Natural beekeeping training
With the observation and practice offered by my various courses, you will be able to gradually train your eye to a rapid analysis of the situation of your hives, and thus be more and more reactive in case of difficulty.
Invent your own hive tracking process, but be thorough. This is how you will stay up to date with your colony work and prevent small problems from escalating into big ones.
At the end of the internships:
you will have all the keys in hand to get started. You will know the bee and the colony in their intimacy, you will know how important and easy it is to start a beekeeping activity, and you will be convinced of the advantages of natural beekeeping compared to “modern” beekeeping. You will be ready to take action. You will know the first steps to take when starting your beekeeping activity.
Choosing the location of your apiary is not done at random. To optimize your chances with your bees, this choice requires a little thought to take into account several criteria: the availability of food within a radius of 3km, the availability of water nearby, protection against external elements, the tranquility of the zone, practicality of access for you and of course compliance with legislation.
The spring visit is a time that beekeepers look forward to. But it is also a time of stress, when it comes to discovering the results of the winter. This is a key period for your bees, so above all do not rush your intervention dates. An early hive opening can kill your colony, which would be a shame after so much effort! The end of winter and the beginning of spring, however, are times when you can start helping your bees by providing them with food that gives them the energy they need to restart their cycle. (Bee awakening course)
In your career as a beekeeper, if you plan to buy swarms, collect them during swarming or simply expand your livestock, you will have to transfer hives. Whether from a hive to a hive or vice versa, you must keep in mind 3 fundamental rules: respect the order of transfer of the frames, partition rather than putting empty frames, and let the hive reorganize itself for 2 or 3 hours before adding new frames. By being reactive and following these precepts, you put all the chances on your side to fix your young colonies instead of seeing them leave again. (beginner course).
As you will have understood, the autumn balancing is a key period not to be neglected if you want to optimize your chances of keeping your colonies from one year to the next. You have to do it at the right time and do not neglect anything, because you will not touch the colonies again before the end of winter. I strongly advise you to train yourself in the field to fully understand the actions to be taken (see my 3-day wintering preparation course at the apiary). Finally, concerning varroa, the key is to be observant and reactive, and to work with black bees, which are naturally more resistant.
A considerable number of beekeepers are surprised by lack of anticipation and start looking for a way to feed their bees in the middle of winter. Do not be one of those, giving due importance to early feeding in autumn. In organic beekeeping, feeding colonies with sugar when they are able to fend for themselves is prohibited. But for a young swarm that does not yet have a forager, or at the end of the honey season, when the colonies risk starvation, the beekeeper is entitled to feed them to avoid their death.
In your life as a beekeeper you will inevitably be confronted with swarming. Understanding and learning to control this phenomenon allows you to no longer suffer from it and to take advantage of it for the viability of your apiary. (Apiary management course.) By making visits every 6 days and being observant, you can act in time to try to prevent your bees from having a swarming fever. If this is not enough, you will have every interest in carrying out an artificial swarming of anticipation. Finally, controlling swarming allows you to offer shelter to outside swarms that can be integrated into your apiary if they prove to be healthy. Finally, if you don't want to expand your herd and you don't need to renew part of your colonies, you can still collect the swarms to sell them. Calendar of the traineeships
Today, I am keen to share with you this approach to beekeeping, proven by several years of experience that has been passed on to me.
This is why I invite you to come and train at the apiary. Everyone has their training in beekeeping, so there will necessarily be yours!