Honeybees on Aster
Acarine mites and eggs inside trachea
Inspecting bees

Tavistock Beekeepers are here to support you on your beekeeping journey, and to help you to progress your beekeeping skills using a teaching medium that suits you.
We recommend novice beekeepers, and those who are interested in beekeeping but have not decided if it’s for them yet, to enrol on our Beginners Course (hyperlink).
You will learn basic apiary siting, all about the equipment and how to use it, how to handle manipulations, about the production and sale of honey and how to monitor your honey bees health.
All those who partake on the Beginners Course will be offered a mentor during their first season of beekeeping.  Your mentor will be an experienced beekeeper who can help with any bee related queries you may have, no matter how large or small.  Your mentor will be an excellent sounding board for advice and decision making.  If you are new to the association, or yet to build your beekeeping confidence to a comfortable level, and think you might benefit from having a mentor, please contact us: tavistockbee@gmail.com 
There will be opportunities for practical hands on experience by visiting apiaries belonging to members in the association and attending “Bee Teas” which will give you an opportunity to meet members who will be pleased to discuss any queries which you might have.

Beekeeping is a broad and fascinating subject that encompasses husbandry, entomology (insects) and botany (plants & pollen), as well as the afflictions of honey bees (diseases, pests, adverse weather), and that doesn’t even mention the harvesting of honey or the vast array of hive products that you can manipulate beeswax, honey and propolis to become.
The BBKA have an established series of courses that aim to raise the standards of beekeeping practices, breaking the beekeeping subjects down into focused modules.  See the flow diagram below for the course map and module subjects.
If you want to move on from the Beginners Course, the first thing to do is to take your ‘Basic Assessment’ which is a short practical assessment to demonstrate that you can handle your bees and can tell your brood from your food.

Once you have that under your belt you can choose to look at any of the modules you want and can choose to study with or without taking any of the exams. There are about half a dozen modules and they can be looked at in any order you like.  Tavistock Beekeepers are developing a library of resources aimed at supporting those beekeepers who wish to progress their skills.  In the meantime, please don’t hesitate to contact us at tavistockbee@gmail.com

Your Committee has decided that in an effort to encourage members to take part in the BBKA modular examinations system and therefore improve their individual beekeeping skills, from January 2022, the Branch will refund a significant proportion of the exam fees for any module successfully passed.  The fees that will be refunded apply to the Junior Module (£5.00), any module (£20) and the Honeybee Health Certificate (£20).

For those studying, be it solo or in a group, Master Beekeeper, Lea Bayly and Helen Tworkowski are both willing to offer advice for any stage of exam or assessment. They can be contacted via tavistockbee@gmail.com