If you have had colonies, know the basics, but just need an extra set of experienced eyes on your hives to enlighten you as to what they’re doing or not doing we offer one on one personal training from an experienced veterinarian.
Our consulting appointments can address any and all issues you may be struggling with, or just want to refine some of your processes to enhance your bee experience at home. The personal training gives you uninterrupted question and answer session with your trainer without feeling inhibited or having to share in a group environment.
Some of the more often raised issues are:
- best location for hives
- swarm retrievals
- when to harvest
- queen problems
We can support you in your journey to find the answers to these issues that work for you – beekeeping is seasonal, local and personal, we make sure that you get what you need to make the best decisions for your beekeeping style!
Ask any Beekeeper and they will tell you – beekeeping is local. The local environment, genetics, food resources all mean the challenges need to be addressed with local solutions.
Although every beekeeper keeps bees, each beekeeper keeps bees differently… as they should. After my beginning in beekeeping found me at a complete loss to find either an adequately educated mentor or anyone interested in spending time answering questions when I needed solutions, it made me realize the need for more trainers, more educators, and a better system of education for beekeepers.
I bring 25 years of experience as a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine in Intensive Production Management Animal operations to the table to help you learn all aspects of the unique challenges of “bee farming”. The long journey of understanding farming techniques required by animal units requires a dedication to self-study and hours of time spent on the internet watching videos and reading blogs and articles, but is that what you want to do when you get the “bug” to care for bees?? Probably not….and again, not usually local information. Most of those educators are either university based or in other environments and have very different concerns and seasonal considerations than those of us in the wet maritime Pacific Northwest.
Add to that, the fact that most beekeepers only get into their hives a few times a year – dealing with swarms, harvest and winterizing, and this gets worse by the fact that you will only learn how to identify and handle situations presented to you by the number of hives you have access to – learning is very time critical, if you don’t look you don’t learn….and you always learn more when things go wrong rather than when they go right.
I’ve developed a year-long program based on experience with university level instruction and interns. You will get world class veterinary level training in this apprenticeship that will provide you more hours of in-person instruction than you would get with a mentor; a cross section of colonies in multiple locations with over 40 individual learning colonies, you will get a bird’s eye view of just about all of the more than unusual issues that bees can create. Both in-hive experience, seminars, and one on one mentoring as well as participation in veterinary diagnostics, forensics and treatment research programs currently in process are all included in this lifetime opportunity.
“Through the Bee Hive” an Interactive Journey – Tours
How to dip your toe into the “beekeeper” water without drowning is how one person put it. This experience will take you through the entire world of bees and their environment, from at the eye level of a bee.
The interactive journey will be a unique and educational adventure unlike anything found in our area. The stops on our adventure will take us through the most important aspects of honey bees and their life cycle. We will address the environmental and human interaction challenges that bees face, as well as, a live hive demonstration that will take you inside the colony to the most inner workings of the hive. One stop will feature food resources and their importance to the pollinators, and another will focus on their homes and the products they produce that we use.
We find these events create a new understanding and lend perspective to how people can interact with the bees and create positive change for our environment, the pollinators and themselves.
The tour is designed for those interested in gardening, nature, pre-beekeeping research, or just something different to do on an island in the Pacific Northwest!! It is purely an introduction to pollinators, and bees specifically, but doesn’t cover the more in depth aspects of beekeeping.
Anyone looking for a more beekeeping focused experience should sign up for the Bee Bootcamp class!!
*Anyone who is allergic to bees, has a pre-existing medical condition or is pregnant should contact our office by phone at (360) 926-8208 before signing up for a tour to arrange for special accommodations.
Private and groups tours are offered by request.
We restrict our internships to only one slot per year to ensure a very intensive and immersive experience.
These opportunities are at no cost to the candidate and provide a one on one learning opportunity with our veterinarian/owner for the entire bee year. The intern not only is exposed to beekeeping health and welfare education, but also is provided time in diagnostics, logistics, record keeping, as well as business and entrepreneurship skills.
The position for the 2018 year has been filled. Applications for the 2019 year will be posted in January 2019.
We are always looking for energetic, dedicated adults to lend a hand in our apiaries. If you want to learn and don’t enjoy a classroom or structured environment, volunteering is a great way to learn how not to repeat others mistakes.
You learn by watching and doing without spending a lot of money on stock and equipment before you feel really ready to handle the responsibilities on your own. If you have spare time and have an interest in whether or not bees are for you, come out and dip your toe in the water with our colonies!
If you are a candidate that is able to change directions quickly and often, and loves getting your hands dirty – we probably have a volunteer opportunity for you! Most of our opportunities have a defined schedule (colony inspections are usually in the afternoon), but the time commitment is very flexible.