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Beekeeping workshop series in Cumberland County

FALMOUTH, ME — University of Maine Cooperative Extension in Cumberland County is offering its annual series of beekeeping workshops with multiple sessions available for beginners and experienced keepers starting Jan. 4.

The five-week beginners course is for beekeepers with less than one year of experience and will be offered twice: Jan. 4-Feb. 1, with a snow date of Feb. 8, and Feb. 15-March 14, with a snow date of March 2. Classes for both sessions will be held 6:30-8:30 p.m. every Thursday.

The focus of the beginners course will be on the basics of honey bee biology and beekeeping. It is designed for individuals who are considering buying their first hives, those in their first year of beekeeping and those with a couple of years of experience who want to enhance their skills and knowledge. It will be held at the UMaine Regional Learning Center, 75 Clearwater Drive, Ste. 104. The course will be taught by experienced EAS certified master beekeepers Jacky Hildreth and Peter Richardson and master beekeeper in training Lindy Allen. The fee is $110 per person, which includes the cost of the textbook.

The Advanced Apiary Management Course is designed for experienced beekeepers who have 5-8 hives and a minimum of 3 years of experience. The course will consist of five Zoom classes to be held 7-8:30 p.m. every Wednesday Jan. 10-Feb. 7.

The course will explore various advanced topics, including overwintering hives; disease; pest identification and management; mite monitoring, treatment and management; swarm management and queen rearing. It will be led by EAS certified master beekeeper Erin Evans. The fee is $75; the recommended textbook is not included.

The two-session, intermediate-level Artificial Swarming and Swarm Management Course will be held from 6:30–8:30 p.m. Feb. 14 and Feb. 21. Topics include swarm biology and behavior, how to prevent and manage swarming in colonies, traps, lures and retrieval. Evins will also lead the course, which will be held at the UMaine Regional Learning Center. The fee is $35.

Visit the program webpage to register or learn more. To request a reasonable accommodation, contact Jason Lilley,; 207.781.6099.

Attached photo courtesy University of Maine Cooperative Extension.

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