- Animals: bees
- Animal Production: general animal production
- Education and Training: youth education
I'm interested in beekeeping. I want a unique project that will benefit our farm and community. This will be an ongoing project that I can continue for many years. It will be interesting to learn about bees and see how the bees work together as a colony. Bees are beneficial insects. They can improve crops on our farm through pollination. Our strawberries, raspberries, apples, plums, alfalfa, and other garden crops whould all benefit from better pollination. Bees produce honey and beeswax, which can be harvested. Our family likes to use natural products and I have neighbors that are interested in locally-raised honey. First, I will read reference books and visit with other beekeepers to learn about beekeeping. I will set up a hive, obtain a colony of bees, and register them with the state. Then, I will choose a good location on our farm for the hive. Next, I will install the bees and monitor them weekly to make sure they stay healthy. I will need to give them enough space to prevent swarming. I will use a smoker to calm the bees, the protective gear to stay safe, and the hive tool to open the frames. Then, I will choose a method of harvesting the honey. PEOPLE and INFORMATION SOURCES for guidance * Jon Kieckhefer - Extension Educator, Brookings County * Connie Strunk - Extension Educator, Turner County * Gordon GAuse - Beekeeper, Yankton, SD * The ABC and XYZ of Beekeeping book by H. Shimanuki and Anne Harman * The Backyard Beekeeper book by Kim Flottum * www.BeeCulture.com and other websites OUTREACH PLAN I will give public presentations and set up educational displays as part of my 4-H projects throughout the year and at the Turner County Fair in August. I will tell elementary students about beekeeping at our annual FFA animal nursery in February. I will also be taking lots of pictures to enhance the presentations and document this project.