Join Us THIS WEEKEND! LACBA Honey Tasting at the LA Zoo Spring Fling

LAST WEEKEND!

The Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association is hosting a ‘Honey Tasting’ (like a ‘Wine Tasting’) during the Los Angeles Zoo 2019 Spring Fling.

For six weekends beginning Saturday, March 23 through Sunday, April 28, 2019 (10AM-4PM). LACBA members will be on hand offering samples of a variety of local honeys, selling local honey, and providing education about honey bees and answering questions.

LACBA Member Schedule & Sign Up

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LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 - #3: Sunday, April 15, 2018, 9AM-Noon, at The Valley Hive Apiary Location

Join The Valley Hive & The Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association for Beekeeping 101 class #3.

PLEASE READ CAREFULLY!!

Our 3rd class will meet at our bee yard located at 9633 Baden Avenue at 9am this Sunday. This is in a residential neighborhood on a horse property. Please be respectful of our neighbors. Parking is available inside the gate.

The bee yard is located off a dirt road; a short walk up a hill from the parking lot. 

You must wear protective clothing, as we will be opening hives during this class. High Top shoes are suggested. 

Make sure to bring water; it may be hot!

Our store, located at 10538 Topanga Cyn, will open at 8am in case you need to purchase any last minute supplies.

Join us after class at our Topanga location for refreshments and the opportunity to talk to other beekeepers in your community. 

If you have any last minute questions or concerns, you can contact The Valley Hive at (818) 280-6500 or via email at info@thevalleyhive.com

For more information, check out our LACBA Beekeeping Class 101.

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 (Class #8): October 14, 2017, 9am-Noon

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 (Class #8) Saturday, October 14, 2017, 9am-noon
BEE SUIT REQUIRED FOR THIS CLASS.

 THE VALLEY HIVE
9633 BADEN AVENUE
CHATSWORTH, CA 93063
(818) 280-6500

BRING A FOLDING CHAIR. Seating is limited.

For directions and day of class updates contact: The Valley Hive

Click here for more information about our
Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association
Beekeeping Class 101
.

TOPIC: Getting your bees through the winter.

Note from The Valley Hive: Even though The Valley Hive has moved to a new location, LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 will continue at 9633 Baden Avenue from 9-12pm. Our new shop at 10538 Topanga Canyon Blvd will open at 8am on Saturday if anyone needs to purchase a suit or other beekeeping equipment. Suits are required. We will be working inside the hive, so if you have beekeeping tools – smoker, hive tool, bee brush – please bring them to class, along with smoker fuel and a lighter.

Calling all LACBA experienced beekeepers - The Valley Hive could use your help with bee class this year. Thank you!

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 (Class #7) Saturday, August 12, 2017, 9am-noon

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 (Class #7) Saturday, August 12, 2017, 9am-noon
BEE SUIT REQUIRED FOR THIS CLASS.

 THE VALLEY HIVE
9633 BADEN AVENUE
CHATSWORTH, CA 93063
(818) 280-6500

BRING A FOLDING CHAIR. Seating is limited.

For directions and day of class updates contact: The Valley Hive

Click here for more information about our
Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association
Beekeeping Class 101
.

TOPIC: How to make splits and robbing.

Note from The Valley Hive: Even though The Valley Hive has moved to a new location, LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 will continue at 9633 Baden Avenue from 9-12pm. Our new shop at 10538 Topanga Canyon Blvd will open at 8am on Saturday if anyone needs to purchase a suit or other beekeeping equipment. Suits are required. We will be working inside the hive, so if you have beekeeping tools – smoker, hive tool, bee brush – please bring them to class, along with smoker fuel and a lighter.

Calling all LACBA experienced beekeepers - The Valley Hive could use your help with bee class this year. Thank you!

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 - Class #8 - Sunday, October 16, 2016

Class #8 of the 2016 Season of LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 is Sunday, October 16, 2016, 9AM-Noon at Bill's Bees Bee Yard. Topics covered will be: Keeping your bees alive through the dearth. BEE SUITS REQUIRED. Look forward to seeing you at BEE CLASS! All are Welcome! All you need to know about the class is listed below. /beekeeping-classes-losangeles/

For all who have NOT been attending our Beekeeping Class 101 and have inquired about coming to the October 16, 2016 class and DO NOT HAVE A BEE SUIT, here's a note from the Beekeeper: "I do not think this is the best class for someone new to start with. I would tell these people to plan to attend in 2017 if we offer a new series of classes starting in Feb. If they can't wait, they can probably buy suits from The Valley Hive. http://www.thevalleyhive.com/ BEE SUITS ARE REQUIRED!!!

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 - #5: June 19, 2016 at Bill's Bees Bee Yard

Get ready for Class #5! Join us June 19th (9am-noon) at Bill’s Bees Bee Yard for Class #5 of the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101. (Bee Suits Required)

June bee class is traditionally our class for hunting mites, but every class from now on out will have a segment on testing for mites, monitoring mite levels, and safe mite treatments for honey bees.

We will continue to follow the progress of packages installed in May.

With good mentoring, monitoring, and continued learning of beekeeping skills, you're off to a good start. Enjoy!

Happy Bee-ing!
Bill & Clyde
Bill's Bees

 

LACBA Beekeeping Class 101 - Full Schedule for 2016

The Full Schedule for the 2016 Season of the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101 is now available. It's a great class, you won't want to miss it, and it's available to everyone! We teach responsible beekeeping for an urban environment. So if you are now or would like to be a Backyard Beekeeper, you'll love this class. If you're already an experienced beekeeper, then you know there's always more to learn about bees. Hope to see you at our first class, Sunday, February 21, 9am-noon at Bill's Bees Bee Yard. /beekeeping-classes-losangeles/

Beekeeping Class 101 - July 19, 2015 at Bill's Bees Bee Yard 9AM-Noon

Sunday, July 19, 2015 9AM-Noon: It's going to be a gorgeous day up at Bill's Bees Bee Farm today for the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101. We're going to learn Honey - Harvesting and Extracting. We'll also revisit Varroa Mites and treatments.  We'll then move over to one of our other apiaries, just a short distance from the Bee Farm, and requeen some aggressive hives. BEE SUITS REQUIRED. Come, learn about bees and beekeeping. For directions and more info visit: /beekeeping-classes-losangeles/

 

Beekeeping Class 101 - Class #4: How Are My Bees Doing?

REMINDER: TOMORROW, MAY 17th (9am-noon) at Bill’s Bees Bee Yard for Class #4 
of the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101. (Bee Suits Required) 

In this hand’s on beekeeping class you’re going to learn how your bees are doing: 

  • Is my queen healthy? Or, am I queenless? 
  • Is there brood? Or, do I need to replace my queen?
  • Is there food? Or, do I need to feed my bees? What? When? How?
  • Are there Varroa mites? And if so, what do I do? 

For those of you who attended Class #3, we took our first peek inside the hive and had a look around: 

We learned to approach a bee hive from the side, slowly and with care, and that it’s not a good idea to stand in front of the hive, blocking the entrance. Foragers, packed with nectar and pollen, were anxious to get in. 

A few puffs of smoke from the smoker helped calm the bees before we opened the top cover. Once the cover was removed, we began our inspection inside the hive. As we removed the frames we leaned them against the side of the box. 
We worked from the outside frames first then moved toward the inside. While carefully removing the frames, we looked for the queen. She's larger and moves quicker than the worker bees and is usually going from cell to cell laying eggs. We finally found the queen surrounded by her 'court,' healthy and happy, and busy laying eggs.  

We saw where the worker bees had started building wax on new frames and were forming the wax into cells. Honey bee cells are the same size all over the world. Worker bee cells are the smallest cells, flat topped, capped with wax. This is called capped brood. Drone cells are bigger, taller, with a dome top. Queen cells are large, peanut shape and texture.

We learned that a beehive consists of three types of bees: Females: 1 Queen, Thousands of Worker Bees. Males: Drones. These three types of individual bees make up the collective hive which is an organization in itself. 

It was an amazing first look inside a bee hive; lot's of oooh's and aaah's, and finger's pointing: What's this? What's that? What are they doing?

Now, in Class #4, we’re going to go more in depth, and learn to recognize the signs of a healthy or troubled hive:

First, we’re going to find the queen and determine if she’s still laying eggs. If she’s not laying, she may be a dud, and we might need to replace her. And, how do we replace a queen?

Then, we’ll look for eggs and see if the larvae have been fed royal jelly. Worker bees feed royal jelly (a milky white substance) to larvae for the first three days. After three days, the worker bees feed the larvae pollen (bee bread). They will continue to feed pollen to the larvae until the larvae is capped off; usually around the 14th or 15th day. Worker bees emerge about 21 days after the egg is laid, drones 24 days, and a queen will emerge about 16 days after the egg is laid. We’re going to learn to identify the differing stages of larvae, locate the capped brood, and learn what the brood pattern reveals to us about the health of the brood and the hive. We'll also learn to tell the difference between capped brood and capped honey.

We'll cover what bees eat:

  • Why do bees need pollen: It is their protein. If bees are not bringing in enough pollen, you’ll learn to determine if you need to feed them a pollen substitute.
  • Why do bees need nectar: It is their carbohydrates. If the bees are not bringing in enough nectar, you may need to feed them sugar syrup. You'll learn how.

We’ll talk about Varroa mites. They seem to be out way too early this season. We’ll discuss various ways of testing for mites and what to do if your bees are infested.

Now, if you really want to get excited and get a jump on identifying the stages of larvae, check out this amazing time lapse video from National Geographic. Honeybee Metamorphosis: From tiny eggs to quivering pupae to hair-sprouting adults, worker honeybees develop at lightning speed thanks to a time-lapse video of 2,500 images. http://video.nationalgeographic.com/video/magazine/150415-ngm-bees-more.

With good mentoring, monitoring, and continued learning of beekeeping skills, your bees are off to a good start. Enjoy!

Happy Bee-ing! 
Bill & Clyde 
Bill’s Bees
http://billsbees.com/
/beekeeping-classes-losangeles/

Reminder: Beekeeping Class 101 - Class #3: Sunday, April 19, (9-noon) Bill's Bees Bee Yard

Beekeeping Class 101 - Class #3: What Goes On Inside The Hive

You’ve got your bees! You’ve got your box! Now What?

Hopefully, you were successful in installing your bee packages. Now we’re going to take a look inside the hive. You’ll find the queen and her eggs and identify the progressive stages of growth. You’ll be able to compare the progress of your new bees to see how they’re doing. Join us on April 19th (9am-noon) at Bill’s Bees Bee Yard for Class #3 (bee suits required). For more information go to: Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101.  

"I liked the ABeeC's Beginning Beekeeping article by Phill Remick "Blind Leading the Blind," says Bill. It's reprinted below.

Blind Leading the Blind

by Phill Remick 

"Recently I met an individual who is quite new to the world of beekeeping but blessed with rather good fortune in the financial realm. His more than adequate monetary resources have opened many doors for his new business, which revolves around keeping bees. 

This particular person and I were having a bee-related discussion at my office when I brought up something he didn’t agree with. Suddenly his demeanor sharply changed as he told me, “I’ve read all the books and I’ve never heard that before. Are you sure?” I stared him straight in the eyes as we closed our conversation stating that having read ‘All the books’ doesn’t mean a thing when you arrive in the bee yard, because the honey bees have their own library. 

Anybody can start a business or beekeeping in their backyard or in their town while reading ‘all the books’. Is that enough? The trick is to associate with reliable, trustworthy, knowledgeable sources; those capable of relating the subtle nuances honey bees display regardless of what is written about them. Learn from these individuals! Whether you’ve visited an apiary one time or several thousand times, there is always information to glean from our honey bearing friends and experienced beekeepers with their hive tools in hand. Their boots on the ground and years and years of seasonal experience out-knowledge any beekeeping book on the shelf. 

For example: one of my students said he had been reading and reading - but now, after opening hives and listening to my explanations - he finally got it! It is one thing to read about bees, it is another to experience them and hear about them from a qualified beekeeper, capable of pointing out the differences of a particular beehive as the bees are flying around your veil… and comparing one beehive to another: a totally different venture than any book describes. 

This is the verbiage of a beekeeping club whose comments I monitor: We are desperate for mentors! Anyone with at least a year or more of beekeeping experience is welcome to sign up to help new beekeepers. 

To me, this is the blind leading the blind and is something to be acutely aware of IF you want to be more than a backyard ‘bee-haver.’

Beekeeping is detailed. It can throw you a curve ball or two, or three. In a yard of five hives each colony may present totally different problems. Your book related one or two of those issues. Guess what? Bees are not predictable, nor are the weather, water, forage, pests, pesticides or predators. Your book may not tell you all the subtleties that differentiate each hive - or how to address it. Books are books. Knowledgeable beekeepers have the experience to lead, teach and guide you through most of the variances that any hive can offer up.

Read a book? I highly suggest reading all you can! Is that all you need to do to be a good beekeeper? NO! Is a mentor who has only had one more season of experience than you what you need as a guide? I’m sure you can answer that by now.

A Stinging Rebuke

IF, and notice that I use the word ‘IF’ you want to be more than a bee-haver, you must not only read as much as you can, but align yourself with a proven, long-term, experienced beekeeper as a mentor and teacher. There is NO substitute for experience…and one season/new beekeepers just don’t have it. 

Check out your ‘mentor.’ What is their experience? How many colonies have they kept? Is it one season of beekeeping or is 15-30 years of beekeeping? Have they taught before? How many people have they taught? Do they teach beginning, intermediate and advanced? Can they supply on-site hive management and analysis of any problems you may have? Or…are they just guessing?

If you ‘wing it’…your bees may die. If you decide to become a long-term, serious beekeeper, then you need to invest in a series of classes taught by an expert—not beekeepers that have only one or two seasons more experience than you do. A new beekeeper may want the notoriety of teaching a class, but their lack of long-term experience will not pay for your loss of hives.

Investigate who you align yourselves with. There is the time-worn but accurate expression, "You get what you pay for." You can get second-hand or even new books and try to teach yourself. You can buddy up with another newbie and together guess at what you are doing. Or, you can get years of beekeeping experience over the phone and even personal visits to your own apiary by an expert. You get what you pay for. Classes and years of experience are worth every penny if it gives you the first-hand, on-site experience that will help you to become the long-term beekeeper that can make a difference to the honey bees existence."

Phill Remick is a former commercial beekeeper who teaches beekeeping classes, offers year round apiary troubleshooting, hive management and sells beekeeping supplies near Albuquerque, NM. Contact him at www.NewBeeRescue.com.

The above installment of “ABeeCs” by Phill Remick, appeared in the April 2015 Newsletter ~ Kelley Beekeeping

Bill Lewis and Clyde Steese have been keeping bees and teaching beekeeping for many years. To learn more about Bill and Clyde, check out our About Us page. Or, you can simply ask them at our next Beekeeping Class 101.

Enjoy your bees! 
Bill & Clyde 
Bill's Bees

Beekeeping Class 101: Class #2 March 15, 2015 9am

Beekeeping Class 101 is offered by the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association. Class #2--Box and Frame Building--will take place at THE VALLEY HIVE on March 15th at 9:00am. The remainder of the classes will be held at Bill's Bees Bee Yard. The class is free to L.A. County Beekeeping Association members. Membership is $10.00 for the year. If not a member, classes are $10/class. For more info visit: http://www.losangelescountybeekeepers.com/beekeeping-class…/http://thevalleyhive.com/

Beekeeping Class 101 - Part 1

Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association/Bill's Bees

How exciting! 119 newbees (Yikes!) showed up for our first class of the 2015 season! What a gorgeous day to be up on the mountain at Bill’s Bees Bee Farm. Bill and Clyde have hosted and taught the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101 for quite a few years. Once upon a time, there were only a handful of “newbees” interested in becoming beekeepers. Over the past few years, interest in beekeeping and the desire to learn more about these tiny honey bees who are so important to our survival, has grown around the world.

So now you want to be a beekeeper!!! You’ve come to the right place. We offer a great series of classes for both beginners and established beekeepers. We’ll walk you through a season of beekeeping; from where to get your bees, what you’ll need in the way of protective clothing, tools and equipment, how to care for your bees, and when and how to extract honey.

With the joy of beekeeping also comes the responsibility to your bees, your neighbors, and yourself. We teach responsible beekeeping for an urban environment, adhering to best management practices for the bees, the beekeepers, and the general public. Keeping bees can be daunting and there’s a lot to learn. As the beekeeper will tell you, “Ask ten beekeepers a question, and you’ll get eleven answers.” You'll make mistakes, we all do. But you’ve entered a wonderful community whose passion is honey bees. We’re here to help you become the best beekeeper you can be.

In our first class we discussed some of the preliminary planning considerations, tools and equipment, and beekeeping resources. In April you’ll be picking up your bees (hope you’ve got your bee order in, they’re going fast!). Below are some things to consider and plan for before you pick up your bees. In our next blog we’ll share the essential tools and equipment you’ll need before you bring your bees home.

Location, Location, Location:

  • A location in the open, preferably with a southern or easterly exposure, for maximum sunshine throughout the day.
  • Away from animals and children, not along a foot path, or where there is direct traffic. 
  • Protected by a barrier (approx. 2 feet from - and facing a hill or wall) from wind, streets, etc. This will also force the bees to fly up and over cars, people, etc., thus causing them to be less of a nuisance and helping them to stay alive.
  • Ease of access (you don’t want to be lifting heavy supers of honey up and down stairs or across rocky fields).

What the bees will need:

  • A safe, natural habitat with a source for nectar and pollen. A typical honey bee colony forages more than 80,000 square yards to find plants and flowers with sufficient nectar (honey) the bees' source for energy and pollen (essential in brood rearing) the bees' source of carbohydrates. 
  • A nearby source of fresh water (within ¼ mile) so they don’t use the neighbor’s swimming pool. This can be a tank or barrel of water with rocks or floating boards or cork for the bees to land on. 
  • A safe, comfortable, home to live in. 

We suggest you buy a couple of good beekeeping books and read them all the way through, twice. Here’s some suggestions: 

  • Beekeeper’s Handbook 
  • Keeping Bees in Towns & Cities
  • How to Keep Bees & Sell Honey
  • Beekeeping for Dummies

Our next class is March 15th at The Valley Hive, where you’ll learn woodworking, how to build bee boxes, frame assembly, and how to prepare your hive for your bees. All future classes will be at Bill's Bees Bee Yard. 

We don't send out notices or emails of changes in dates, times, location, or schedule. All the information regarding the classes is posted on the website: Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Beekeeping Class 101 and on the Los Angeles County Beekeepers Association Facebook page

We welcome you to the wonderful, exciting world of beekeeping. We are forever grateful for the 'Gift of the Bees!' Join us!

Thank you!
Bill and Clyde
Bill's Bees

http://billsbees.com/

Beekeeping Class 101: 2015 Season Begins Sunday, February 15

Beekeeping Class 101: 2105 Season begins Sunday, February 15, 2015
9:00AM-Noon

2015 Beekeeping Class 101 Schedule
  Feb. 15March 15April 19May 17June 14July 19Aug. 16Oct. 11
Please see our Beekeeping Class 101 for details.

 

   "Go to the bee, thou poet: consider her ways and be wise."
-George Bernard Shaw, Man and Superman, 1903

Mark your calendars! Bill and Clyde have once again graciously offered to host Beekeeping Class 101 for 2015.

We teach responsible beekeeping for an urban environment, adhering to Best Management Practices for the bees, beekeepers, and general public. All are Welcome!

All the information you need in order to attend our Beekeeping Class 101 is posted on our Beekeeping 101 Class page of our website and on our Facebook page at:  https://www.facebook.com/losangelesbeekeeping.

Location of Classes:
Bill's Bees Bee Yard
12640 Little Tujunga Blvd.
Lake View Terrace, CA 91342

http://goo.gl/maps/Hz7NS