How do I start Beekeeping?

Either enrol on our beginner’s course when available (or a neighbouring association’s course) or come along to one of our association meetings to learn the basics and see whether or not it is something for you.

Where can I get bees to get started?

Experienced beekeepers in our association will have a certain number of bee nucs for sale each year, prioritising new beekeepers to help them get started. With the right advice you may be even collect a passing swarm! You should only source bees from a local reputable known beekeeper.

Will I be stung?

This is unavoidable. Suits aren’t sting proof and it does happen, but with gentle handling, good training and practice, this can be minimised.

When is the best time of the year to get my bees?

You will need to order the bees early in the year you want them, as they are often in great demand. Priority is generally given by local providers to new beekeepers form the area who have completed a course and joined the association. You should ensure that any beekeeper selling bees has complied with standards for preparation of nucs for sale set out by FIBKA and local associations. You will probably get your bees in June or July allowing you time to get used to manipulating and controlling your hive of bees before the quieter months starting in October.

How much do Bees cost?

A five frame nucleus from a local bee keeper will cost 120 to 150 euros. You will need to provide the nucleus hive or return the hive once you have transferred the bees to you own.  A passing swarm using a bait hive is free!!

Where can I get beekeeping equipment and beekeeping supplies?

There are several suppliers of bee keeping equipment in Ireland although none are local to North Tipperary. Suppliers operate through mail order, online, attend association shows and some will deliver to local meeting points.  You will find a list of beekeeping equipment suppliers on the Federation of Irish Beekeepers Associations website.

On occasion second hand equipment is advertised at our regular meetings through word of mouth, ‘An Beachaire’ magazine or online. This will need to be sterilised. Do not reuse second hand combs from an unknown source, as they could contain disease.

Do I have to join an association?

By joining a local bee association you will have access to an invaluable source of up to date information and network with other beekeepers who can help you when you need advice..

When is the best time of year to start on a Beekeeping Course?

Many associations run courses for Beginners in the early part of the year, but the annual beekeepers conference in Gormanstown during August each year runs a beginners course. Details of courses are usually advertised during shows in the autumn period, bee demonstration events and on association websites.

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