Advice for those interested in becoming beekeepers
Beekeeping can be a very interesting and rewarding activity. There are many beekeepers in Canberra with a hive or two in their backyards.
Effective 23 May 2016, all hobbyist and commercial beekeepers in the ACT in Australia are required to register their hives. Registration is free and can be completed online at the TAMS website. There is also a Code of Practice for Beekeeping in Residential Areas of the ACT.
http://www.environment.act.gov.au/parks ... /bees#Code
If the hives are in NSW, or taken into NSW, you need to be registered with NSW DPI. Right now, the only other legal requirements in the ACT are that the bees be kept in hives with frames, certain diseases are reported and the bees are not a nuisance to neighbours.
Our members have Langstroth, Warre, top bar, flow hives and probably others as well.
There is quite a lot involved in beekeeping and it usually costs several hundred dollars to get set up. We recommend that new starters attend beekeeping courses that we advertise on this forum and the website. The courses are popular and usually fill up quickly.
It is also recommended that you join the Beekeepers Association of the ACT and try to come to meetings. You will learn a lot. There is a monthly newsletter, and we have field days at our Jerrabomberra Wetlands Apiary in the warmer months. Meetings start with Beeginners Corner in which anyone can ask questions and make statements. Beeginners Corners is usually followed by a guest speaker. Other training courses and events are organised throughout the year.
Spring is an ideal time to start beekeeping. Swarms are common in springtime only, and they can make a good starting platform. You can get your boxes assembled and painted and equipment ready for Spring. Perhaps you will be able to obtain a swarm from an established beekeeper. Swarms are often advertised in the classifieds section of the association website or the 'Swarm Trading Post' in the Forum. Or, if you are confident, you might catch your own swarm. Local beekeeping suppliers have nucleus colonies in Spring and advertise in our newsletter. You will find plenty of others on-line.
If you advertise for a swarm in the 'Classifieds' or 'Trading Post' you might get one free or for a nominal charge from a member with more swarms than they want to keep.
Packages of bees with new queens are available at some times during the year from queen breeders if you are up for a 4 hour drive. Google 'package bees'.
Having said that, plenty of people jump in at the deep end and buy a hive with bees, or get one in some other way.
Either way I'd do as much reading and research as possible. A good reference is BeeAgskills available through the NSW DPI website.
See http://www.dpi.nsw.gov.au/aboutus/resou ... e-agskills
We also recommend The Australian Beekeeping Guide published by RIRDC:
For more information, contact email@example.com or post to this forum.
Announcements and Info for New Members.
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