Beekeeping Classes

Beekeeping in Northern Climates Year 1 (Getting Started in Beekeeping)

Interested in becoming a beekeeper? Dr. Marla Spivak and Gary Reuter from the University of Minnesota Bee Lab will help you get started in beekeeping. If you have had no prior experience keeping bees in our cold climate, Beekeeping in Northern Climates, Year 1 will teach you everything you need to know for a successful first year.

When: Next classes December 7, 2019 and February 22, 2020
Where: University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus

Beekeeping in Northern Climates Year 2 (Keeping Bees Year After Year)

Need help keeping your bees alive and healthy year after year? If you have taken Beekeeping Part 1, this engaging course is for you. Taught by Dr. Marla Spivak and Gary Reuter from the University of Minnesota Bee Lab, Beekeeping in Northern Climates, Year 2 will help you maintain healthy bee colonies long term. This class can be taken the same year as Beekeeping Year 1, although we recommend you take it after your first year of beekeeping.

When:  Next classes December 8, 2019 and February 23, 2020
Where: University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus

Beekeeping in Northern Climates Beyond the Basics

This class is exclusively for beekeepers that have had the following three experiences: 1) successfully wintered honey bee colonies in a cold climate; 2) introduced a new queen into an existing colony; 3) kept bees continuously for two years.

In Beekeeping in Northern Climates Beyond the Basics we will cover alternative management strategies to successfully winter colonies in northern climates, divide colonies in spring, requeen colonies in spring and/or fall, and maintain colonies on natural comb. We will not cover honey harvesting and extraction, or the basics of wintering colonies as these topics are covered in Beekeeping Part 2. Taught by Dr. Marla Spivak and Gary Reuter from the University of Minnesota Bee Lab.

When: April 13, 2019
Where: University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus

Successful Queen Rearing Short Course

Why not rear your own queens? The University of Minnesota Queen Rearing short course teaches one method of rearing queens that works consistently for both hobby and commercial beekeepers. Topics covered include queen and drone biology, timing of queen rearing in northern climates, stock selection and breeding for hygienic behavior, setting up mating yards, and record keeping. Everyone will have a chance to try their hand at grafting larvae and raising their own queens. A unique feature of the course is the section on queen rearing equipment designs that will allow you to build your own!

When: July 19-21, 2019  Go to registration
Where: University of Minnesota, St. Paul Campus

Bee Squad Mentoring Apiary Classes

The best way to learn good beekeeping skills is through hands-on mentoring from an experienced beekeeper. The University of Minnesota Bee Squad's Mentoring Apiary Program provides this invaluable learning experience. Each session is tied to key management topics in a typical beekeeping season. Working in small groups, students manage University teaching colonies under the guidance of Bee Squad mentors.

The UMN Bee Squad is offering an array of exciting, hands-on beekeeping classes in 2018. We offer classes for both beginning and experienced beekeepers and at multiple locations throughout the metro area. This year we’ve added many new class topics and expanded some of our more in-depth sessions to include a classroom component!

Students must have prior beekeeping experience or have taken a beekeeping class (such as Beekeeping in Northern Climates) before registering for Mentoring Apiary classes.