2020 Beginners Course *Update*
Classes for anyone interested in learning about bees will begin on March 28th 2020. It will be held over five Saturday mornings (28th of March, 4th of April, 25th of April, 2nd of May & 16th of May) and two night classes (21st of April & 12th of May) at Offaly Historical Society premises, Bury Quay, Tullamore at 9.30am each morning. Each Saturday will follow with a practical session at our own Apiary where you will get first hand experience with colonies of bees. This will of course be depending on good weather. Topics will cover all aspects of basic beekeeping.
Classes are facilitated each year by very experienced beekeepers in our Association. We are lucky in Offaly to have a number of beekeepers who are nationally and internationally recognised for their skill and expertise in beekeeping. It is always a pleasure to hear them impart a knowledge and love of bees and beekeeping.
Cost of course is 110 euros. In addition to course expenses this fee covers membership of Offaly Bee Keepers Association (OBKA) for one year, affiliation to Federation of Irish BeeKeepers Association (FIBKA), insurance cover to keep bees during that year and also the magazine, An Beachaire, delivered to your door each month. This magazine helps keep everyone up to date on all Irish beekeeping matters.
As in former years, we invite beekeepers who have already completed the course to join the classes as a refresher. There is no charge for the classes if you have been on a Beginners’ course in recent times. Up to date membership required.
If you know of anyone interested in the classes please send name and e-mail address to of fill in the contact form here
Download membership form here
28th March 2020
Lecture 1 - Intor to Beekeeping & Life Cycle
Practical 1 - Hives and Tools
Learn the different ellements of a bekeeping and beehive variants. Learn all about the smoker and other hive tools.
4th April 2020
Lecture 2 - Setting up an Apiary and Nectar Sources
Practical 2 - Honey Production and Spring buildup
Learn all about Pollen and Nectar sources and why bees like the flowers they do. Also learn about selecting a site for your beehive.
25th April 2020
Lecture 3 - Summer Management and Swarm Control
Practical 3 - Hive inspection and Marking Queens
Learn all about managing your bees throughout the summer season with the view to best practices and hopefully a good crop of honey as your reward. You will also see and learn about the different stages of brood.
2nd & 16th April 2020
Lecture 4 - Assembling frames - Workshop & Exam Revision
Practical 4 - Apiary Practical Exam
Learn all about assembling your frames and preparing you for your exam.
Preliminary FIBKA examination
23rd of May 2020
Written examination and practical held in our own association. Advice and help with the exam will be given during the course.
Topics covered will include:
1. Lifecycle of the Honeybee
2. Occupants of the Hive
3. Hives and Equiptment
4. Diseases of Honeybees
5. Bee Forage - Pollen and nectar sources
6. Choosing an Apiary Site
7. Spring Management
8. Summer Work and Swarm Contol
9. Harvesting the Honey Crop
10. Prepairing colonies for winter
11.A ssembling a bee hive