3 Part Hands-On Backyard Beekeeping
Time & Location
About The Event
This unique workshop is a 3 part series on beekeeping in an urban setting, one in the spring (May 11th), summer (July 7th), Fall (September 28th)
3 Part Introductory Hands-on Backyard Beekeeping Workshop focuses on everything you need to know about keeping urban backyard bees throughout the seasons.
It is a unique workshop for a few reasons: most other courses focus on beekeeping in a rural setting and for commercial beekeepers and many are just theory while this workshop will take you to urban hives where you will suit up and handle the hives giving you a more in-depth understanding and ensuring you're ready to do this alone. This is for you if you have an urban backyards and would like to have just a few hives, and look after them really well.
The workshop is broken up into 3 separate dates so that you will get a solid hand on each step as each season varies different in how to handle your bees:
Spring (May 11th)
Don’t be put off if you are nervous about opening the hive, this course is aimed at those with limited experience working with honey bees. You will come out with more confidence and understanding of how to properly care for a beehive. We will explore a number of options for keeping bees, from different types of ownership to differences between hive equipment. This course will give you all the tried and true tricks from a professional beekeeper, from how to open your hive in the spring, how to approach a hive inspection, how to handle frames with and without gloves and how to enjoy every visit!
What you will learn
Overview of bee biology, registration and legislation
Options for where to buy hives, what hives to purchase (standard 'Langstroth' equipment vs. top-bar and other hive styles) and all the equipment you will need
Beekeeping protective gear, high and low cost options and recommendations
Installing a nucleus colony and where to place your hive
How to start a smoker and how best to approach a beehive
What to look for at each hive inspection and how to deal with common problems
Splitting hives and looking for signs of the queen
Which treatments to consider in a beehive
Knowledge of what to expect when purchasing nucleus colonies and full beehive
What you will take home
Ontario Bee Keepers Association Ontario Beekeeping Manual
A hive tool for use in beekeeping
A guideline honey bee calendar
Summer (July 7th)
You don’t need to ‘bee’ experienced, we will go through how to open a hive and work with honey bees safely. This course will cover the busiest beekeeping time, where hives have built up over the winter and honey supers will need to be added and the hive is at its largest size. Management techniques and options for monitoring for hive pests will be discussed and tried first hand at the beeyard. As with every hive inspection, we will be looking for signs of the queen and hopefully finding her busying herself around the hive. We will go through multiple scenarios, discussing and trying out how to split hives, combine hives, move frames and the little extra knowledge and tricks to make every hive inspection successful.
What you will learn
When to install honey supers
What equipment you will need
When to pull honey
What to look for at each hive inspection
Sign of swarming and what to do about it
Looking for the queen
Monitoring for common hive pests
What you will take home
A queen cage and mite board
An understanding of honey flow and how to harness it to your advantage
How to check the health of your hive
Take home monitoring instructions and how to build your own shaker or mite board
Fall (September 28th)
The fall workshop covers the sweetest time in beekeeping. We will discuss approaches to wintering beehives, feeding options, pulling honey and a variety of treatments for hive pests. We will work with a hive and review what to look for and how to safely handle frames of bees. So don’t worry if you have limited or no experience, we will work together and show you how gentle honey bees can be. Most importantly, we will be extracting honey. You will try out how and when to pull honey supers, uncapping frames of honey and cutting out comb honey. There will be an overview of options as well as a chance to extract honey frames and jar honey to take home!
What you will learn
- When to pull honey supers
- Which treatments to consider
- How to prepare the hive for the coming winter and when to wrap the colony, use of entrance reducers and insulation
- What to do if you find a weak hive
- How to extract honey and prepare it for sale, considering labelling requirements and food safety
What you will take home:
A jar of local honey
Knowledge of how to extract honey, from manual to hand spinning to electric extractors
Knowledge of how to check moisture content and colour of honey
Knowledge of how to prepare bees for winter, including feeding
Take home guidelines on treatment options, where to buy them and when to apply them
When: Saturday May 11th, Sunday July 7, and Sunday September 28th
Where: 10C Shared Space - 42 Carden Street Guelph Ontario and local urban hives.
Cost: $425 + HST
** You can pay by a payment plan in three installments $142 be following the email money transfer instructions below. Please include HST ($160.46).
*** you do not need to register through Eventbrite, saving yourself the Eventbrite fees. You can send an e-transer to email@example.com. Please include the HST in your transfer ($480.25). You MUST send a separate email and include which workshop you're registering for and names and emails of each attendee.
What To Bring: A pen and notebook, lunch and snacks, water. An email will be sent out to you 48 hours prior to each date to include any last minute reminders.
Important Info: We will be moving locations half way through the workshop to go to the hive. We will either be able to walk or carpool.
About Colette Mesher:
Colette calls herself a biologist who loves bees and horses. She started beekeeping in 2014 and the next year decided that she wanted to be a full time beekeeper. Since then she has spent all her time developing her beekeeping skills by working for commercial beekeepers while building up her own small business called Rebel Honey. She currently has a dozen hives in a variety of locations, from backyards in Guelph to horse farms in Kitchener and Erin. Her passion is for keeping healthy, happy bees and producing wonderful local honey and other hive products. She love sharing my passion for bees with others and have had the opportunity to take even the most timid of friends with me on the search for the elusive queen bee.
What's the refund policy?
Minga will provide a 100% refund for workshops cancelled by Minga.
If a registrant cancels a workshop with more than 5 days notice, a 100% refund will be issued.
If a registrant cancels with less than 5 days notice or does not show up, no refund will be issued.
We are unable to provide a refund after the workshop takes place.
The above policies apply for pre-registered workshops. Refunds or credits will not be issued for a missed class.