Beekeeping Classes & Events
The University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service offers Complete Beekeeping short courses periodically around the state. These courses are open to anyone interested in honey bees or beekeeping. No prior experience with bees is necessary to participate. Classes will cover everything a person needs to know to begin keeping bees safely and successfully. Most short courses consist of three class sessions, with new information presented in each class, building on what has already been covered. All short courses are taught by UA Extension apiculture specialist Jon Zawislak, an EAS-certified Master Beekeeper.
Beekeeping has a steep learning curve for the novice, and there is a lot of material to cover. The first class will introduce the bee hive, basic tools and equipment, and protective clothing, as well as present an overview of important honey bee biology and behaviors. The second class will cover seasonal colony management, laws and regulations, and honey production. The final session covers honey bee health, hive pests, and bee diseases. Knowledge of these areas are (unfortunately) now an essential part of beekeeper education.
Because the beekeeping industry is always changing to adapt to new challenges, these classes can be a great refresher course for experienced beekeepers, who may learn some new techniques or better understand the behavior of their bees. Class participants are also encouraged to meet and socialize with others who share their interest in the amazing honey bee. Numerous beekeeping clubs and associations meet regularly throughout Arkansas, providing members with continuing opportunities to socialize, share, and learn. If you are looking for information on local area beekeeper club meetings, visit the website of the Arkansas Beekeepers Association to find a group near you.
If there are no classes scheduled in your area, visit with your local County Extension agent to see it's possible to schedule one in the future.
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