2017 spring Beekeeping Classes
Honey bees are a wonderful addition to any garden. They remind us over and over that flowers and bees are dependent on each other for their survival But beyond that, honey bees have a magical quality to them that seems to charm and enthrall all those that keep them in their backyard gardens!
Beginning Backyard Beekeeping
Instructor and long-time Northeast Portland beekeeper Glen Andresen will take you through the basics of backyard beekeeping using only gentle and organic mite treatment techniques, which leads to less-stressed—and easier to handle—bees! Topics include basic Langstroth equipment (but also the pros and cons of Warre' and top-bar hives), sources for bees, what to look for inside the colony, handling swarms, good nectar producing plants, hive maintenance, retrieving honey and beeswax, over-wintering, and pests and diseases. The class includes a three-hour classroom lecture and a one-hour field trip.
Portland Community College Community Education, Friday, May 5, 2017, 6:00 p.m. to 9:15 p.m.
Southeast Campus, 2305 SE 82nd (at Division)
The class begins with a three-hour classroom lecture and ends with a one-hour hands-on demonstration at Glen’s apiary in Northeast Portland the next day, May 6, 2017 at 2:00 p.m., weather permitting.
To register online, click here. Or, go to http://www.pcc.edu/schedule/ and search keyword: Backyard Beekeeping: Beginning
Next beginning beekeeping class at PCC:
June 30/July 1, 2017
HONING YOUR BEEKEEPING SKILLS
A series of short monthly classes for beekeepers who are in their second or third year of beekeeping or beyond. Each month Bridgetown Bees will explore a timely beekeeping topic in detail. Classes are held at Urban Farm Store, 1108 SE 9th Ave. Next class:
Sunday, March 26, 2017, 1:00 p.m.
"Your Past, Present and Future Hives"
This month we will do autopsies on frames from dead colonies, discuss what to do with your hives now after this crazy cold winter, and offer tips on building, using and placing bait or swarm hives. Bring in a frame or two of your own for diagnosis. Free!
Second Year Beekeeping: What Do I Do Now?
Designed for the city beekeeper who likely already has a colony of bees who is ready and eager to learn more. Topics include evaluating the strength of spring colonies, making splits, swarm prevention techniques, capturing swarms, maximizing honey production and making some of your own equipment. The class includes a two-hour classroom lecture and a two-hour field trip to Glen’s apiary in Northeast Portland for live
demonstrations and hands-on learning
(weather permitting). Check back for next class.
Become a Beekeeper
Helping reduce the decline of honeybees in our region is an integral goal of our mission for Bridgetown Bees. Since 2006, honeybees have been dying off at an unsustainable rate with billions of bees disappearing in the U.S. and losses estimated at greater than 30-40 percent per year. As beekeepers and concerned citizens for the plight of the honeybee, we decided to take a more active role in gaining a better understanding of the issues surrounding this incredible insect. Today, there are half as many beekeepers as there were in the 1980s.
The collapse of honey bee populations also threatens the security of our food supply since honeybee pollination is critical to the cultivation of over a third of our food supply in America. Current research to find solutions continues to be a complex endeavor for scientist and entomologist but as beekeepers work to improve honeybee health, local citizens can help too.
Become a Backyard Beekeeper
If you’re interested in becoming a backyard beekeeper, we recommend starting with a local beekeeping association. As instructors with Portland Urban Beekeepers, we spend a significant amount of time helping many people become backyard beekeepers by teaching the fundamentals of hive management and keeping the bees alive and healthy. In the Pacific Northwest, honey bees and beekeepers tend to struggle with the usually extended cool and rainy springs. Unable to forage for pollen and nectar when the temperatures and rain keep the troops inside the hive, there is always the threat of starvation. This is where a little attention from the beekeeper will not only help the colony survive but will have them buzzing happily into the major nectar flows with abundant population and good health. Aside from contributing to the bee population, a single hive can easily pollinate residential gardens of several neighborhood homes. For most people, beekeeping grows into a passion. It certainly has for us!