2020 Beekeeping Mentoring Program

Hardin County Kentucky Beekeepers AssociationOffered by: David F. Shockey (270) 308-8549

The main purpose and focus of the 2020 Mentoring Program is to help beekeepers be successful in beekeeping.

The program will be offered for two separate experience levels: Beginners with little to no experience, Hobbyist/Sustainability Beekeeping for those that have some experience. There will be a separate session for each of these two groups on the second Saturday of each month. Hobbyist from 09:00 AM to Noon and Beginners from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM.

In conjunction with the overall “Mentoring Program” I am offering a “Starter Hive Program” this year. Everyone participating in the Mentoring Program can participate in the Starter Hive Program. There are a limited number (15) of Starter Hives with bees available; only one per person/family/couple. It will be very important for those participating in the “Start Hive Program” to attend the first mentoring session in February where more information will be provided and discussed. It is essential that all of those who are interested in participating in the “Starter Hive Program” place their orders as soon as possible. The cost will be $200.00 for each starter hive w/bees. There will be a $100 deposit required at the time you submit your request. The remaining balance will be due at the second session in March when you pick up your beehive equipment. The beehive equipment (screened bottom board, one 10 frame deep with frames & wax foundation, one medium with frames and wax foundation, enter cover and outer top cover, 2” spacer) will be available for pickup at the second session in March so that you can paint and decorate as you wish. You will need to bring the Starter beehive setups back to the session in April when we will help you install packaged bees w/a queen. We will keep all the Starter beehives at my place for a couple of weeks to make sure that all is well. Then you will be able to take them home. We will keep a couple of Starter hives on location for training purposes and for you to compare the progress with that of your beehives at home. We will inspect, monitor, treat and manage all the starter hives in the same manner from April through October. As the beehives grow and progress there may be a need for some additional equipment such as a queen excluder and a medium hive box or two. I’ll provide all additional equipment needed at cost to you. If anyone wishes to participate in this program, call or text me with you Name, address, phone number and email address. (270) 307-8549. A good deal!

The Mentoring Program will have a $10 per person per session fee and a $15 per session per couple (husband-wife, mother-daughter, father-son etc.) fee. These fees cover the operating expenses and the purchase of numerous items of beekeeping equipment, supplies and materials that support the program.

At the end of the program in October, all participants who attended at least 75% of the sessions will receive a certificate of completion. We will also be giving away a lot of beekeeping equipment and etc. as door prizes for everyone that participated. I’m hopeful that it will be a good year and will be able to give away a hive or two as well. A good deal!

Some of the sessions will be in a classroom environment at a location to be determined while most will be on location at my small farm in Rineyville.

The Beginner Beekeeping sessions will cover the following general topics:

  • You will only need a beekeeping jacket with vail and gloves.
  • Hands-On beekeeping as many sessions as possible -- getting to inspect and evaluate beehives
  • Economics of Beekeeping
  • Beekeeping equipment, supplies and materials
  • The various types of bees, queens and the differences in the workers, nurse bees and drones and their role in the beehive.
  • Best Management Practices
  • Will discuss what is happening in the beehives each month.
  • Best management practices for sampling for and treating for Varroa Mites and other pests--- Honey bee health Coalition website.
  • Beehive inspections/evaluations
  • Honey Harvesting, Processing, labeling and selling
  • Preparation of beehives for winter
  • Care and maintenance of beehive equipment and storage over winter.
  • Feeding bees spring, summer, fall and winter.
  • We will make every effort to discuss all your individual questions each session.

The Hobbyist/Sustainability sessions will cover the following general topics:

  • Hands-On as many sessions as possible – getting to inspect and evaluate beehives
  • Hive inspections/evaluations
  • Preparation of the beehives for Spring
  • Rotation of beehive boxes and spring frame management
  • Spring hive splits and Nuc’s
  • Hive and frame management for best honey production
  • How to deal with honey, pollen, and brood bound beehives
  • How to deal with aggressive beehives.
  • Swarm prevention and swarm catching.
  • Re-queening of hives
  • Honey Harvesting, processing, labeling and selling
  • Spring, summer and fall Varroa Mite treatments--- Honey Bee Health Coalition website.
  • Summer hive splits and Nucs.
  • Care and maintenance of beehive equipment and storage over winter.
  • Feeding bees spring, summer, fall and winter.
  • At each session, we will discuss all beekeeper questions and especially those related to your own beehives.

The current schedule of sessions:

This is subject to change due to unforeseen situations and every effort will be made to coordinate any needed changes in advance:

  • February 15th
  • March 14th
  • April 11th
  • May 9th
  • June 13th
  • July 11th
  • August 8th
  • September 12th
  • October 10th

To sign-up and pre-register for the 2020 Beekeeping Mentoring Program: Text me your name, address, phone number and email address.

David F. Shockey
(270) 307-8549