Beekeepers gather for second night of workshop

The second night of the BCBA workshop for new beekeepers drew another large crowd of people interested in bees.

They heard presentations from Sue Tarwater on setting up an apiary, Steve Avery on how and where to get bees, and Jim Stovall on what it means to be a beekeeper.

Below are pictures of the event taken by Stacey Adair and Jim Stovall.

New Beekeepers Workshop, Feb. 8, 2010

The first night of the BCBA’s new beekeepers workshop drew 130 people, many of them potentially new beekeepers for Blount County. Below are some pictures of the event taken by Stacey Adair and Jim Stovall.

Short course on beekeeping

The Blount County Beekeepers Association will hold its annual two-night short course on beginning beekeeping on Monday and Tuesday, Feb. 8-9, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. each evening at the Blount County Library.

The workshop is free and open to the public. Anyone interested in learning more about bees and beekeeping — even if you’re not ready to acquire bees just yet — is welcome to attend.

The short course will cover a variety of topics including the basics of beekeeping and equipment, how to set up an apiary, and what bees need to survive in today’s environment.

Kent Williams to speak at January meeting

By Charlie Parton

We are privileged to have Kent Williams with us as guest speaker for the January meeting of Blount County Beekeepers.

Kent is President of the Lake Barkley Beekeepers in Wingo Ky., past president of Eastern Apiculture Society (EAS), a EAS master beekeeper and a frequent speaker at EAS, Heartland Beekeepers Society (HAS) and many other regional and state conferences.

Kent maintains around 400 colonies which he keeps in his home state of Kentucky and south Mississippi. He has for several years raised his own queens from survivor hives which he uses to make nucs and requeen established colonies.

Having paid the price early on with some major losses due to using no chemicals, he is now chemical free.

He will speak on the topics of Breaking Your Chemical Dependency and Raising Your Own Queens.

Everyone is welcome to attend this program on Monday, January 11, 6:30 p.m. at the Blount County Library.

O’Dells featured in Daily Times article

Coley and Judy O’Dell are the subject of an article in the Maryville Daily Times this week.

The article focuses on the things Judy can do with beeswax.

Here’s part of what the article says:

If you think beekeeping only produces honey, Judy O’Dell has news for you. She offers a wide variety of products made from honey and beeswax, including lotions, lip balms and candles, at Smokey Ridge Apiaries & Crafts, Maryville. She and her husband, Coley O’Dell, own the business.

Beekeeping in Indiana

An Indiana man writes a book about beekeeping among the Hoosiers, according to the Sound Bend Tribune.

The book, 42 pages and 8-by-11-inches, takes its readers through the calendar year, including the basics of getting started with bees, ending up with “tucking down” bees for winter.

Beekeepers trade charges in the UK

An ongoing dispute among beekeepers in the UK has boiled over again.

Phil Chandler, an advocate of topbar hives and what he calls a more natural form of beekeeping, has been at odds with the British Beekeepers Association (BBKA) for a number of reasons, most recently because of what he terms a “secret” deal between the BBKA and medications companies Bayer and Syngenta.

Now the association has struck back with an editorial by the former BBKA president which has taken Chandler to task for what he calls a churlish email that “condemned Syngenta… for announcing a major investment in research into the declining population of honeybees. It is better that Syngenta does not further research the possible role of its own pesticides. Others are independently.”

The president condemns Chandler and his organization, Friends of the Bees, as wanting “to deprive bees of the treatments and medicines they need to help them overcome the pests and pathogens that modern trade and transport have spread around.”

And further, “The exposed hatred in the email for the entire agrochemical industry shows that the core concerns of the writer are more political to the point of religion than apicultural.”

Chandler doesn’t taken the editorial silently:

Well, Glyn, it’s hard for me to show any respect for an industry that has done so much damage to the planet, its people and its animals. And religion is not something I suffer from.
I take it as a sign that we are having an impact on people’s thinking about bees in the context of our toxic agricultural system when someone with such a big axe to grind starts attacking us in public – and simultaneously exposes his own prejudices and ignorance.
Being savaged by a dead sheep comes to mind.

BCBA Christmas dinner

The Blount County Beekeepers Association annual Christmas Dinner will be Monday, Dec. 14, 6:30 p.m. at the Immanuel United Methodist Church, 2349 Mentor Road, Louisville.

The ladies of the church are preparing a meal which includes beverages and dessert. The cost is $14 per person (prepaid please), and seating is limited, so please call Dale to make your reservations ASAP.

Directions to the church: Directions from 129/Louisville Road– Drive Northwest on Louisville Road 3.1 miles and turn right onto Mentor Road
at Shell station on corner of Miser Station and Mentor. Go 1.4 miles to Immanuel United Methodist Church on the right.

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