Free Beekeeping Courses – Advantages and Limitations

There are many free beekeeping courses available online today.  While they are great for the beginner beekeeper, it is very important to understand that if you intend on pursuing beekeeping as a long-term hobby or as a business, you will need more detailed direction than most free beekeeping courses will provide.

Advantages

A free course will likely give you the basic information you need to get started.   They are great for people who are just starting out or are still in the process of deciding if beekeeping is something they would like to pursue.

Free beekeeping courses will provide you with resources to help you learn even more than what you can get from the course itself.  Here is what you can possibly expect to learn:

  • How to start and maintain bees and hives
  • How to buy bees to put in your hives
  • How to care for your bees
  • How to deal with predators
  • How to introduce the concept of beekeeping to your neighbors
  • How, when, and how often you should approach bees
  • How to harvest honey
  • How to avoid disasters

This is all excellent and necessary information compiled in one place.  It is also important information that will definitely give you a good start to this intriguing hobby or lucrative career in beekeeping.

Limitations

Free beekeeping courses can be detailed to an extent; however, they cannot possibly touch on the topics you will need to know in order to safely and successfully keep bees.  Why?   Free beekeeping courses are generally offered to give you enough information to enhance your interest so that you will look more into the hobby or business.  Many times, these courses are offered so that you will buy a full course, some type of equipment, or more detailed book.

You would be surprised at how much information there is to learn about bees and their world.   A free class will only touch on a small percentage of what you will need to know if you intend on making this a long-term hobby or business.  It is important to learn as much as you can before you purchase your bees.  If you are not completely prepared, then you risk spending a lot of money and time on bees that will only die or cost you a lot of money treating them for disease.

Free beekeeping classes will get you started, but they will not give you all the information you need to succeed.  These classes are definitely worth your time because they will generally give you a great deal of information, especially enough to get you started.   However, do not be fooled into thinking you have what you need to continue on.

Here are some things you will likely not see in this type of class that are important to expand on:

  • State Inspection Policies
  • Budgeting
  • Organic Apiculture Standards
  • Africanized Hybrid Bees
  • Honey Bee Diseases
  • Beekeepers Insurance
  • Beekeeping as a Profession

You will need to know your state’s apiary laws concerning inspection, registration, and permits, as well as look into liability insurance.  Beekeeping courses that do not charge generally do not go into details on these subjects.  While many of these classes will talk about honey bee diseases, they will only discuss a small portion of these diseases.  If you want to expand your hobby or business, you will need to know all you can about all of these diseases.

Take advantage of online free courses that are available to you; however, keep in mind that if you wish to continue on with beekeeping, you will want to look into a more detailed course that you may have to pay for.  Consider this an investment to your future beekeeping hobby or business.