Membership

How and Why To Join

The Huguenot Beekeepers Association meets monthly to discuss topics relevant to the season including what members can expect to see in their hives and what actions they may consider taking to best care for their bees. We meet on the first Thursday of each month in the Powhatan Village Auditorium from 7-9pm and other times as designated for special programs.

Anyone interested in beekeeping is welcome to attend one of our monthly meetings as a guest. Membership dues are $10 per year per family and can be payed to the treasurer at any meeting, but generally are due at the first meeting of each year held in February. Through an all volunteer organization, the club strives to provide many benefits to both its members and the community with some of our recent programs shown below.


Member Benefits and Community Service

  • Beginning Beekeeping Class - Held annually in February, this event equips the attendee with the knowledge required to become a beekeeper! Topics range from purchasing and setting up your first hive (including both woodenware and bees), how to perform an inspection, and best practices. The cost of the course includes a one year family membership and the book Beekeeping For Dummies, regarded as one of the best beginner beekeeping books. New members attending the course are also offered the chance to purchase 3lb packages or 5-frame nucs with the club's last bulk order each year.
  • Beekeeping Hardware Workshop - Free and open to the community, this workshop is held to provide tools and experienced assistance in assembling hive bodes and frames, and also installing and wiring foundation. The club provides everything except the hive components themselves, including air tools, jigs, nails, staples, and glue.
  • Spring Hive Inspection Walkthrough - Each Spring, building upon the classroom instruction of the Beginning Beekeeping Class, members are invited to join the advisors to perform an inspection on established hives, providing invaluable experience that new beekeepers especially can put into practice with their own often newly established hives.
  • Club Apiary - In partnership with Blessed Sacrament Huguenot, the club's apiary expands the community outreach
  • Young Beekeeper Award Program - With a desire to promote beekeeping among the youth of the surrounding communities, HBA provides an opportunity for a young person to get started in beekeeping by providing the necessary knowledge, materials, and support for success. The application process is rigorous but the selected recipient is awarded a one year membership to both the Huguenot Beekeepers Association and the Virginia State Beekeepers Association, free registration to the Beginning Beekeeping Class, a complete set of wooden-ware for a basic Langstroth beehive, a package of honey bees, and basic necessary beekeeping equipment which includes hat, veil, hive tool, and smoker.
  • Swarm Removal - Another community service provided by members of the club is swarm removal. While a swarm is both a natural mechanism for bees to proliferate by splitting one hive into two or more and a generally harmless occurrence, they can certainly be intimidating and occasionally decide to take up residence in less than desirable locations. Experienced club members and their contact information are listed on the Swarm Map and will respond to calls to remove swarms.
  • Guest Speakers - Throughout the year, the club leadership will arrange for guest speakers to attend a monthly meeting, bringing different perspectives or state wide insight directly to the members. As an example, Virginia State Apiarist Keith Tignor spoke about the then pending legislation to establish a limited liability law for beekeepers. Jerry Hayes, author of The Classroom column in the American Bee Journal will be speaking to our club at the April 2017 meeting.
  • Beekeeping Presentations - HBA members are also available to give beekeeping presentations at schools, fairs and other community groups and events. The exhibit can include educational materials, pictures and even an observation hive - a working colony with windows allowing observers to see the bees hard at work! Anyone interested in scheduling a beekeeping presentation can contact the Club Secretary.

Have a question about joining our club or any of the programs offered? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions or contact one of the club's Officers.

Beekeepers Calendar

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Check out the full Beekeeper's Calendar.

Education & Resources

Documents

Nectar Sources - A comprehensive list of all pollen sources available in North America, including the blooming months, availability and quality of the source for honey bees.

Pollen Sources – A comprehensive list of all pollen sources available in North America, including the blooming months, pollen color, availability and quality of the source for honey bees.

Pollen Contents – List of amino acids, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants that are found in bee pollen.

Spring Pollen & Nectar – A low resolution version of the Spring pollen & nectar chart available from Eversweet Apiaries.

Summer Pollen & Nectar – A low resolution version of the Summer pollen & nectar chart available from Eversweet Apiaries.

Fall / Winter Pollen & Nectar – A low resolution version of the Fall & Winter pollen & nectar chart available from Eversweet Apiaries.

Selecting Plants for Pollinators – A Regional Guide for Farmers, Land Managers, and Gardeners in the Southeastern Mixed Forest Province including the States of Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Parts of Tennessee, Louisiana, Texas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Maryland provided by the Pollinator Partnership in support of the NAPPC.

How to Store Equipment – Presentation given at the February 2017 meeting on how to store equipment after a dead out or after extraction of honey.

Preparing for Winter – Presentation given at the October 2016 meeting on how to get your hives ready for winter, including checking for mites and feeding.

Swarm Infographic – An infographic from Vita-Europe on honey bee swarming.

Varroa Infographic – An infographic from Vita-Europe on the Varroa mite.

Mite Treatments – Presentation given at the August 2016 meeting about how to treat for Varroa mites, including mechanical & physical controls, genetics, natural treatments and synthetic treatments.

Varroa Management Guide – Tools for Varroa Management, A Guide to Effective Varroa Sampling & Control provided by Honey Bee Health Coalition.

Honey Bee Diseases & Pests – A paper by Dr. Marla Spivak and Mr. Gary S. Reuter from the Department of Entomology at the University of Minnesota and the Minnesota Extension Service listing all major honey bee diseases, mites and pests.

Protecting Your Hives From Bears And Other Predators – A presentation given by Greg Gibson at the April 2017 meeting on how and why to setup an electric fence.

European Hornets – A presentation given at the September meeting on how to identify European Hornets and their impact on honey bee colonies.

European Hornet Trap – Instruction sheet on how to build a trap for European Hornets. This trap also works well for yellow jackets and wax moths.

Virginia's Home Kitchen Food Processing Exemptions – A list of Virginia’s New Home Kitchen Food Processing Exemptions including the rules for Honey Processing.

Virginia Honey Laws – A compiled listing of the National Honey Board & Virginia Honey label laws.

Helpful Links

Virginia State Beekeepers Association - www.virginiabeekeepers.org

VSBA Master Beekeeper Program - www.virginiabeekeepers.org/master-beekeeper

Eastern Apiculture Society - easternapiculture.org

Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) - www.vdacs.virginia.gov

VDACS Beehive Grant Program - www.vdacs.virginia.gov/plant-industry-services-beehive-grant-program.shtml

Keith Tignor – Virginia State Apiarist
804-786-3515
Keith.Tignor@vdacs.virginia.gov

Virginia Beekeeping Laws - law.lis.virginia.gov/vacode/title3.2/chapter44

Meeting Minutes

August 3, 2017

  • Keith White opened the meeting and discussed the club apiary, the committees and the upcoming picnic.
  • John Davis, a guest speaker, discussed different methods in queen rearing including the pluses and minuses with each method. He also stressed the importance of constant mite checks.
  • We broke out into groups with each advisor for Q and A.

July 6, 2017

  • Doug talked about committee sign ups and HBA picnic on September 30th Fighting Creek Pavilion.
  • The new club logo was chosen with the winning logo designed by Midori Batten.
  • Chuck gave an update on the club apiary. We lost one hive and everyone will need to sign a waiver to enter into apiary. Hive inspections have been a success as it is a good tool for learning.
  • Mite treatments were discussed including mechanical methods, bee genetics, and natural and synthetic treatments.
  • Rules for selling honey were discussed.
  • The State Fair of Virginia and the Mid-Atlantic Organic Honey Bee Convention are upcoming events of interest to our members.

June 1, 2017

  • Stan Houk, Vice President of the Rockwood Park Backyard Beekeepers Association announced the annual Honey Bee Festival held June 24th.
  • The club still has bulk seed for sale – Wildflower, Dutch White Clover, Buckwheat.
  • The 2017-2018 Officer Elections were held. The new leadership team can be found on the Officers page of the website.
  • Chuck Burden and Doug Anderson gave a monthly update on the HBA club apiary, announcing a monthly open house for members, the enrollment of 10 hives in the Bee Informed Partnership Sentinel Apiary Program, a current inventory, and last months accomplishments including securing the apiary with a lock, performing inspections, splits, and requeening, and also 2 hands-on member field days.
  • Chuck Burden cautioned members to ensure any Nucs advertised for sale are inspected by the State Apiarist to be healthy and free of disease. Inspected Nucs will be designated with a VDACS sticker showing the month and year of inspection.
  • Chuck Burden gave an update on Hive Tracks, including the HBA community which currently has 11 members, 32 yards, and 165 hives. Members are encouraged to join for the mutual benefit of knowing what’s happening in their local bee world.
  • Doug Anderson announced the Committee Signup Sheets. Each committee will include at least 1 officer. The committees are Club Apiary, Social-Hospitality, Hardware-Equipment, Packages & Nucs, and Seeds & Plants.
  • Gabe Penfield, winner of the Young Beekeeper Award gave a presentation on his first months as a beekeeper.
  • The June door prize is a 10 Frame Fume Board & Spray donated by the Scottsville Supply Co.
  • All submissions for the new Club Logo were presented to the members. Each member was given the opportunity to vote for up to 3 logos.
  • Doug Anderson showed videos on swarms and honey extraction methods. He also announced a Fall Beginners Beekeeping Class in addition to the annual Spring class to give new members additional time to prepare for their first hives.
  • We broke out into groups with each advisor for Q and A.

May 4, 2017

  • Stan Houk, Vice President of the Rockwood Park Backyard Beekeepers Association announced the annual Honey Bee Festival held June 24th.
  • The door prize for this week is Seeds & Small Hive Beetle sheets/traps.
  • Package & Nuc orders for 2017: Last Package Delivery – May 14th. All orders & payments need to be in by May 6th. The Nuc delivery will hopefully next week (weather dependent). An Email will be going out to all people with orders.
  • Doug Anderson gave an update on the new Club Logo Design. Designs must be submitted before the June meeting so that they may be presented to the members for a vote.
  • The 2017-2018 Officer Elections will be held at the June meeting. Anyone interested in helping run the club, please let the leadership know before the June meeting.
  • Chuck Burden gave an update on the Club Apiary. The fencing was installed, seed sown around the area, and the first hives were placed. Members may use the apiary as a temporary “out yard” and an additional location is being discussed.
  • Doug Anderson announced the monthly to do lists handouts for both New and Existing Hives.
  • Chuck Burden gave a presentation on beekeeping apps including Hive Tracks, which gives a 20% HBA member discount and club “community” for members to join.
  • Doug Anderson gave a presentation on Small Hive Beetles and Swarm Catching.
  • We broke out into groups with each advisor for Q and A.

April 6, 2017

  • Doug Anderson announced a new attendance sheet and door prize for each meeting. Only members are eligible and must be present.
  • Stan Houk, Vice President of the Rockwood Park Backyard Beekeepers Association announced an event on April 11th , 6:30pm – Dr Kirsten Traynor will speak in the village building. RPBBA will also be holding their annual Honey Bee Festival, June 24th.
  • Package & Nuc orders for 2017: Initial packages delivered last Saturday and the next package delivery scheduled for April 22. An email will be going out to all people with orders. The Nuc delivery is scheduled for mid-May. Updates will come out as we get closer.
  • Chuck Burden introduced the club bulk seed purchase program including seed types and prices. The club began taking orders and selling seed to members.
  • Chuck Burden introduced the club apiary concept which was presented to the members for a vote. The apiary was approved and will be placed at Blessed Sacrament Huguenot.
  • Greg Gibson gave a presentation on local hives damaged by black bears and how to purchase and install an Electric Fence.
  • We broke out into groups with each advisor for Q and A.

March 2, 2017

  • The Beginner Beekeeping Class was held in February. Thank you to all the officers and advisors that helped and contributed to making it a great class.
  • A Beekeeping Hardware Workshop will be held March 11, 9am-3pm, Goochland Sports Complex. Bring unassembled equipment.
  • The HBA Website was redesigned and includes a swarm catching list – submit contact info including e-mail/phone/address. Thanks to Greg Gibson.
  • Package orders - $93 ea., Second delivery in April still available. Nucs - $127 ea., No frame exchange, cardboard nuc box, Delivery end of April – Not available after tonight. Queens - $30 ea. Orders & money for packages must be received by March 15th.
  • Doug Anderson showed videos on installing packages and nucs and how to split hives for increases and to prevent swarming.
  • Keith White gave a presentation on Bait Hives & Swarm Trapping.
  • Eddie Whitt gave a demonstration on making splits.
  • We have all the equipment needed for the Young Beekeepers Award Program. Thank you to everyone that donated to the program, both in equipment and money.
  • Doug Anderson discussed ideas for the future of the club including an HBA Calendar Fundraiser, a family picnic, bulk seed purchases, the design of a new club logo, and a project to raise local queens and nucs from survivor stock which could be sold to club members at a discount.
  • We broke out into groups with each advisor for Q and A.

February 2, 2017

  • About 69 people were in attendance.
  • Treasurer Dick Overton reported our bank balance at $2,284.61. This is after approximately $6,000 was sent as a deposit on our Spring bee packages and nucs.
  • Dues for the year are due now. The cost is $10 per family.
  • Package orders and payments are due by March 15th.
  • Our Beginning Beekeepers Class will be held February 21 - 23 from 7 to 9pm each evening. The cost is $45 and includes your HBA dues and the textbook.
  • Gabe Pennfield was announced and introduced as our first Young Beekeeper Award Program winner. We still need donations for equipment and beekeeping clothing. All gifts of equipment must be new.
  • Chuck Burden gave a presentation on winter feeding for February and March.
  • Doug Anderson gave a presentation on performing a Colony Autopsy.
  • He also gave a presentation on storing used frames and woodenware.
  • Please submit suggestions for meeting topics to Doug.
  • We broke out into groups with each advisor for Q and A.