We run an annual beginners course in March/April each year which gives people an introduction to beekeeping. We provide participants with course materials, access to our training apiary and full protective clothing for visits to the apiary.
The course comprises 3 theory lectures and 3 practical days. The lectures are given by different members who have been keeping bees for many years.
The theory lectures are held on a Wednesday evening and cover the following topics:
- The lifecycle of the honeybee, bumble bee and wasp
- Equipment used in beekeeping
- The Beekeeping Year
The practical days are held on a Saturday and consists of a morning session/lecture and an afternoon visit to our training apiary. The 2 practical days cover:
- Basic information about opening a hive
- All about swarming
- All about pests and diseases
The course is currently held at The Carrick Centre in Maybole, in either the Culzean or Crossraguel room.
Wednesday evening sessions start at 7:30 pm and Saturday morning sessions at 11:00 am.
Lunch can be purchased at the cafe in the Carrick Centre, but this is not included in the cost of the course.
The current cost of the course is £90 if paid before 28th February and £100 thereafter.
Annual members of Ayr Beekeepers entitles you to attend all our meetings throughout the year, including all of those after the course has finished.
The Scottish Beekeepers Association (SBA) is a separate charity (SC009345) which represents beekeepers in Scotland and provides its members with insurance cover. This is required to attend our training apiary. If anyone is already a member of the SBA the cost of this can be removed from the course fee on production of an SBA membership card.
The quality of the lectures and the obvious enthusiasm of the members. I felt very welcome. The hands-on experience at the apiary was particularly interesting and was good in terms of confidence building