Bee AgSkills: A Practical Guide to Farm Skills

· · ·
· Agskills Book 2 · NSW Agriculture
5 reviews

About this ebook

A clear, practical guide to beekeeping produced by a team of experienced apiary officers from NSW DPI. Includes how to use a bee smoker and work safely with bees, how to maintain hives, how to catch a swarm, how to remove and extract honey, how to replace a queen bee, and common health and pest problems in beehives. With step-by-step photographs, clear diagrams, and a linked glossary of terms. 




Background knowledge

General safety precautions

Select bee site

Assemble and maintain a hive

Obtaining bees (buy hives)

Obtaining bees (buy packages)

Light and extinguish a bee smoker

Open, inspect and close a hive

Move a hive

Seasonal management

Catch a swarm


Identify flora for honey production

Judging field conditions

Remove honey

Extract honey

Legal considerations for an apiary

Health problems and pests in the hive

Reducing swarming behaviour

Buying second-hand hives and equipment

Quality assurance

Industry structure and contacts


Managing Work Health and Safety risks

Check your skill

Further reading

Ratings and reviews

5 reviews
Karl Angel
October 31, 2015
Easy to read and understand with pictures of what they are talking about. Excellent resource
1 person found this review helpful
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About the author

Doug Somerville is employed by the NSW Department of Primary Industries as a Technical Specialist for Honey Bees. He has over 25 years experience assisting bee keepers and honey producers with
    •    best management practices in keeping honey bees;
    •    seasonal management enquiries;
    •    disease/pest management processes;
    •    starting out in bees;
    •    progressing from an amateur beekeeper to a business in keeping bees.
Doug Somerville has beekeeping experience in the United Kingdom and Canada and has been a guest speaker at several international conferences. He also manages over 100 hives himself for research, honey production and pollination.

Jennifer Laffan has written many publications and training resources for the NSW Department of Primary Industries, including others in the AgSkills series.

John Rhodes has been in the beekeeping industry for all of his working life, including forty years of service in the Queensland and New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (DPI).

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