Bruce White OAM
Retired Technical SpecialistApiculture, NSW DPI
Had a look at your A Beginners Guide to Beekeeping DVD and was impressed with the sections on Preparing equipment ,type of equipment ,the smoker hive tool, extracting honey , flora, life cycle of the beesand opening the hives with clear explanations and practical tips. Beekeeping can be about different ideas. Congratulations on doing the DVD it will help a lot of beekeepers.
By Tony, Sue and Chris Cranston
My wife, son and I decided to take up Beekeeping as a hobby for the family eighteen months ago. We were concerned in that we knew very little about Bees and the requirements to maintain them and where to go to for assistance in our new endeavour.
Fortunately we decided to attend a meeting of the Parramatta Amateur Beekeepers Association where we met the very experienced Beekeeper and Trainer, Arthur Garske. Arthur is in charge of the training program and also of carrying out the various training courses offered at the club. We were so impressed with his attitude and approach that we all booked into our first training course of how to assemble a Bee Box.
It turned out that Arthur was such a fine teacher and trainer that the three of us went home that night with an assembled Bee Box each as well as understanding why Bee Boxes are made as they are and the various types of Bee Boxes that are used. (The three boxes are now part of our Bee Hives). Further training courses followed so that we knew how to make honey frames, light and maintain the smoker, how to wear our Bee Suits and where to stand when working on the hives, how to inspect the hive and the frames while showing the best methods of using the hive tools, what to look out for in the health of a hive and many more topics too numerous to mention here. All in all we felt that we were prepared to start out with our own hive of Bees.
Arthur has such a wealth of knowledge about Beekeeping and the environment in which the Bees live as well as being so willing and capable of passing on that knowledge in his supportive and positive manner to those who wish to know more about Bees whether they are already skilled or new to Beekeeping.
We are lucky to have had Arthur train us in the basics of Beekeeping as we now have a mentor that shares his knowledge of hive management with us and even is now showing us the practices to follow when showing our honey in competitions.
The old saying that states that the trainer has not trained until the Trainee has learnt must be how Arthur approaches his training role as we three were certainly well trained as our Bee Hives and honey production attests to.
By Gary Holloway
I am a retired teacher and we have had bees on our 10 acre farm for about 5 years to pollinate our veggie garden.
Wanting to learn more about bees we attended a Bee Field Day at Mona Vale in 2016 where Arthur Garske was showing a large crowd how to requeen a hive. This was a “Live Event” presentation of the Amateur Beekeepers Association of NSW. Arthur kept the crown enthralled with his lively demonstration and knowledgeable responses to the many questions from the interested bee enthusiasts.
Into this presentation, he very aptly wove a message on how to behave around bees easing any discomforts within the crowd. I was impressed with his extensive knowledge and ability to pass this on.
Since then we have attended a series of ongoing training courses, conducted by Arthur, aimed at providing training for new beekeepers.
We have learnt HOW to make a bee box, lids, bottoms and frames (including wiring and wax embedding).
Our “classmates” in groups of about 10 have come from a wide background. At each session we have had a well-paced demonstration, followed by appropriate time and assistance in completing the task, Arthur has always willingly assisted all of us as we worked to complete the task.
Arthur provided us with many anecdotal points of interest, including advice on the relative merits of a variety of beekeeping equipment and processes.
We not only learnt HOW TO but WHY. We realise beekeeping will be an ongoing process of learning.
We are well on the way in learning about beekeeping. We are comfortable in the application of skills we have learned, and confident that we can continue to grow our knowledge with the support of the ABA.
This developing confidence has come through the willingly shared expertise of a most knowledgeable beekeeper, Arthur Garske.