South Florida Bee College | Tom Allen | Boy Scout Merit Badge | Florida Honey Queen Program | How To Join BASF | Menu Tree | Donate |  Pollinator-Pesticide Awareness Survey | Florida Farm Bureau Recruitment

Cane "Bufo" Toads have Invaded South Florida... they're here!

It was reported by member, Otto tonight (June 10, 2015),that not only are Cane toads "Bufo" showing up in Southwest Florida, but that he actually saw one first hand.  These toads are causing beekeeping management problems, because the huge toads reside near hives and consume large quantities of bees, plus they are so toxic that they should not be handled and can easily and quickly kill dogs and pets.

The "Bufo" Marine Cane Toad                 UF Wildlife Bufo Cane Toad

A quick search of the web reveals information that these toads are active at night and can eat 200 to 300 bees.  They eat the guard bees at the entrance and other bees come out to replace these bees and the toad uses his sticky tongue to keep eating the bees. These toads cannot jump very high; however, beekeepers should elevate their hives (at least 15 inches) to prevent cane toads from feasting on their bees. WARNING!:  Do not handle these toads as they secrete toxins.  The toxins can easily and quickly kill a dog.  They like to stay under elevated hives and eat dead bees that are dropped out.  If you find them you can wear plastic gloves and put them in a bag and dispose of them (some say they freeze them).  Australia has been dealing with fighting the battle against this toad invasion for awhile... read more about their problem which is or soon may be our own problem, here in Southwest Florida.

Trap and Eliminate Bufo Toads | Humane Disposal of Cane Toads | Tampa Dog Poisoned by Bufo Toad | Major Threat to Dogs in South Florida


USDA National Honey Report, Number XXXIV - #12, January 16, 2015
Excerpt from the report regarding Florida, based on commercial beekeeper reporting:


FLORIDA: The weather for the month was a little warmer than normal with precipitation slightly higher than normal. There was still not very much rain, as December is typically a dry month in Florida. Bee health was considered to be very good. Beekeepers were splitting hives and treating for mites in preparation for the annual trip to California for almond pollination with many hives being relocated shortly after the middle of next month. There were few sources of food, except for scattered wild flowers and some maple. The maple bloom appeared to be about a week earlier than normal. Citrus greening was causing some early premature orange bloom, but no honey was being produced from that source. The next source of food for honey production will be citrus, primarily orange blossom, in March. There was essentially no honey being produced for sale and practically no stored honey available for sale. Demand remains good with supplies very light and prices remaining at or near record levels.

The entire report can be found here:

A Million Hits in the last 12 months

Website Statistics: Some inquiring minds want to know, just how popular is our local association's website.  For those geeks and nerds, I have compiled a 12-moth report on the website's performance... and it exceeds all expectations with over 5000 visitors to our site every month.  These are actual visitors, not just hits.  If you are interested in hits, then for example in April of 2015 we had about 80,000 hits (about a million hits in the last 12 months).

However, "unique visitors" is far more important than the hits.  Unique means new visitors actually looking at our website.  In April of 2015 we had 4,542 "unique" visitors to our website that month.

Some of most popular pages after the main page, were our blog, links page, honey plants "what's blooming page, and our downloads page.  While our blog was inactive it is still bringing in about half of our visitor traffic.  Even though our Archive and past events page may contain history and old information, the information was viewed almost 300 times in April.... read more

Need more convincing of the effectiveness of our website?.. Goggle Search these 4 keywords::  beekeeping events florida 2015  and see where we stand among all the websites in the entire world for current beekeeping events in Florida.

Space is limited to 25 students.  Cost of the course is $135.
Make Checks payable to BASF
(Mail to 3406 Palm Beach Blvd, FM 33916).

The UF/IFAS Lee County Extension, in collaboration with the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida (BASF) offers a 4-week introductory beekeeping class this summer.

Morning classroom sessions are at the North Fort Myers Recreation Center. Afternoon practical sessions are at the BASF apiary.

Students receive a basic kit including bee veil, smoker, hive tool, and resource books.

Bees are NOT provided as part of this package!

Pre-registration is necessary for inclusion in the class.

Classes dates:

  • Saturday, September 10

  • Saturday, September 17

  • Saturday, September 24

  • Saturday, October 1

Saturday, September 10, 2016 at 8:30 AM - Saturday, October 1, 2016 at 4:00 PM (EDT)

North Fort Myers Recreation Center - 2000 North Recreation Park Way, North Fort Myers, FL 33903

ALL ATTENDEES MUST REGISTER ONLINE for admission to the event.  Walk-up registrations are discouraged and will incur an additional $20 fee.

The University of Florida’s Honey Bee Research and Extension Laboratory announce the 4th annual South Florida Bee College in conjuncture with their 4th annual Caribbean Bee College.

Friday and Saturday, August 12-13, 2016

UF Fort Lauderdale Research and Education Center
3205 College Ave.
Davie, FL 33314

This two-day event will have lectures in the morning and hands-on workshops in the afternoon. Live bee colonies and a Welsh Honey Show will be on display.

Keynote Speakers: Dr. Larry Connor and Dr. Justin Schmidt
We hope that you and your family decide to join us for this fun-filled weekend.

Classes for beekeepers of all ages and experience levels, gardeners, naturalists, county agents, and anyone else interested in honey bees. You do not have to keep bees to attend; the only prerequisite is your interest in the subject!


Political Signs Repurposed into 5-frame (or 3-frame) NUCS (nucleus) hive boxes at HoneyBeeMan BLOG
and there is a rough sketch by Dennis available there for download which may help you come up with your own variation.

Some of this month's (November) meeting raffle items:  White rubber coated large gloves, 6-oz pkg of hive staples (approx. 49 staples), EZ Nuc (5-frame fold-up assembly plastic nuc), S.S. smoker with rubber billows and cage guard, pair of boot bands, heavy-duty hive tool, clear plastic queen catcher, bee brush (Mann Lake)

Virginia has lots of new beekeeping related "new" raffle items for regular and special raffles as was passed in March's meeting to spend to boost donations.

2016 FSBA Annual Business Meeting
Election of Officers
Thursday, December 8, 2016, 8:00 AM
Florida Dept of Ag Doyle Conner Building
1911 SW 34 St, Gainesville, FL

Florida State Beekeepers Association members are invited and encouraged to attend. There is no charge to participate. The meeting will start promptly at 8:00 AM as there is a fair amount of association business to address. As required by our governing documents, both a president and VP shall be elected annually. Wayne Eheart is chairing the nominations committee. If you wish to nominate a member for office, please contact Wayne via email at

The FSBA has been in discussion with the Florida Association of Property Appraisers regarding ag exemptions for commercial beekeeping operations. The FSBA is working with FAPA to develop guidelines for assessing beekeeping properties. FAPA has been invited to attend for a roundtable discussion on ag exemptions and beekeeping operations.


  • 8:00-10:00 Annual Meeting / Election of Officers

  • 10:00-10:30 Break

  • 10:30-1200 Roundtable Discussion Ag Exemptions -Beekeeping operations

  • 12:00- 1:00 Lunch Break

  • 1:00- 4:00 Honey Bee Technical Council

If planning to attend, please RSVP to Tony Hogg, (904) 515-3722

NEW "Pollinator-Pesticide Awareness Survey" (January 2016)

Florida Bee Protection | Beekeeper Survey

The following e-mail endorsement has been received from Jeanette Klopchin, Pollinator Protection Specialist, Division of Agricultural Environmental Services, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services:

The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) has developed a Managed Pollinator Protection Plan (MP3), whose purpose is to establish a systematic and comprehensive approach to mitigate the risks of pesticides to bees and other pollinators while supporting both crop protection and insect pollination. Most importantly, this MP3 is developed through open communication and coordination among key stakeholders; beekeepers, growers/landowners, and pesticide users.

We now invite you to participate in a state-wide pesticide-pollinator awareness survey that aims to collect important background information about the current state of knowledge, common practices, concerns, and other relevant information about pesticides and pollinators in Florida, directly from its stakeholders.

The information obtained with this survey will be used to measure the success of the Managed Pollinator Protection Plan over time and will help tailor our outreach efforts.

This survey is completely anonymous, and no one, not even FDACS, will be able to associate you or your company with any of the responses.

Completing this survey will take approximately 10-15 minutes.
Please choose and only complete the survey that most closely reflects your role in Florida Agriculture.

Grower Survey:
Applicator Survey:
Beekeeper Survey:

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your time.

Jeanette Klopchin
Pollinator Protection Specialist
Division of Agricultural Environmental Services
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services
(850) 459-5714 mobile
(386) 418-5515 office

Build the Bee Lab

The FSBA is coming back this year for funding of the bee lab, after being stung in 2014 by Gov. Rick Scott's line item veto, last year.  The following are excerpts from an article on this subject at Context Florida:


"The research center is needed to determine why so many beekeepers are losing colonies...We have some very serious problems." said Tom Nolan, the association’s president and a part-time beekeeper from Bradenton..

Nolan told the Senate Committee on Agriculture, “Beekeepers are losing about 30 percent of their colonies every year,” Nolan said. “I’ll ask you if you can think of an industry that can survive starting 30 percent in the hole every year.”.read the entire article by Bruce Ritchie at Context Florida

Build the Bee Lab Brochure | Context Florida Article

Per Celeste Fournier (President of the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida):  As you may be aware the Governor and the Legislature are trying to work out the state budget, and it is a critical time for the Bee Lab. Please take 5-10 minutes, call or email the representatives below. Let them know how important this bee lab is to you and all beekeepers.

Per Tom Nolan (President of the Florida State Beekeepers Association):  Funding for the bee lab will be taken up as soon as June 9, 2015. We need as many people as possible to call and email Monday (June 15, 2015) morning. When calling, you will most likely go straight into voice mail, leave a message, you don’t need for anyone to return your call.

Rep. Ben Albritton, 850-717-5056,
Rep. Doug Broxson, 850-717-5003, 
Rep. Neil Combee, 850-717-5039,
Rep. Debbie Mayfield, 850-717-5054,
Rep. Jimmie T. Smith, 850-717-5034,
Rep. Ray Pilon, 850-717-5072,

Ask that the House match the Senate appropriate of $3.6 million. Tell them it is line number 101 for the Conference Committee of the Senate General Government and House Agriculture and Natural Resources Appropriations. The Senate offer is $3,644,269 the House offer is $0.

FSBA Annual Fall Conference Meeting 2015
November 20 - 22, 2015

Registration Options



Contact Us About Convention

 ...More info

The Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort welcomes attendees of the Florida State Beekeepers Association 2015 Annual Meeting and has provided special conference rates for your stay:

The standard $20 resort fee has been waived for FSBA conference attendees, so your room rate includes complimentary self-parking, unlimited Internet access, unlimited use of health and fitness center, resort beach access and in-room coffee service. To receive these special conference rates, you must reserve your room by October 19, 2015.

The Story & Photos | Hotel Reservations Page | Easier to Read & Printable Schedule (pdf)

The Bee Workshop
"Honeybee Health & Best Management Strategies"
Intensive Learning Session

August 30, 2015
11:00 am - 5:00 pm

"FREE to the Public" ~ "Register by August 26, 2015"
"Lunch Included"

FAMU Research and Extension Center
4259 Bainbridge Highway, Quincy FL

The exciting learning session is for seasoned beekeepers, urban beekeepers and farmers interested in examining agro ecology strategies that work to build healthy soil, healthy food, invigorate honeybee health and establish sustainable bee keeping practices.

View or Down Flyer and Detailed Information

Facilitator:  The Rodale Institute's Michael Schmaeling


Friday and Saturday
August 14 -15, 2015

UF Ft. Lauderdale Research
and Education Center

3205 College Ave. Davie, FL 33314

Download/View Brochure 

Facebook Events Page

,,, more info

2015 Florida Bee Research Symposium

University of Florida Honey Bee Research & Extension Lab

Wednesday, July 15, 2015 at 8:00 AM -
Thursday, July 16, 2015 at 5:00 PM (EDT)
Gainesville, FL

Florida’s first ever Bee Research Symposium.  The meeting will bring together bee researchers from across the state and region to discuss topics related to the study of bees.

The meeting will bring together bee researchers from across the state and region to discuss topics related to the study of bees.

All of the information you need to know about registering for and attending the event can be found at:

View and/or Download Itinerary Flyer


Cost of the course was $200

 Checks were made payable to BASF and were mailed to:

 “Beekeeping Course”, 3410 Palm Beach Blvd, Fort Myers, FL 33916).

Deadline for registration was
May 15, 2015

 Introduction to Beekeeping Course
Classes for this 4-week course began on
Saturday May 30, 2015.

Space was limited to 40 students. Students received basic startup kit including bee veil, smoker, hive box and resource books. Bees were NOT provided as part of this package!

Pre-registration was necessary for inclusion in the class. Details were available by calling Celeste Fournier or Rebecca; e-mail

Morning classroom sessions are at the North Fort Myers Recreation Center (2000 North Recreation Park Way, North Fort Myers). Afternoon practical sessions are on the apiary/farm of a BASF member beekeeper.

Flyer Course Outline | Event Details on Facebook


...more information | Registration | Brochure

2015 University of Florida

Friday and Saturday March 6th & 7th, 2015

The Whitney Laboratory
for Marine Bioscience
9505 Ocean Shore Blvd.
St. Augustine, FL 32080-8610

...more information

Featuring some of our hometown favorites like David Westervelt and Jamie Ellis, and keynote speakers Dr. Deborah Delaney and Dr. Thomas Seeley.

There are over 40 classes, new and repeated, that speak to the variety of people who attend, from beginners to the advanced.

Don't miss out on your chance to experience new knowledge and meet with those who are interested in the same amazing beekeeping hobbies and topics all over the state of Florida!

Our December 10, 2014 meeting was our Christmas Potluck Dinner

Plenty of Food...

Our own spin the prize wheel

See 50 More Photos VIEW ON FACEBOOK

September 10, 2014 meeting included a presentation by T. Wayne Gale, Director of Mosquito Control followed by Q&A about the presentation, specifically about concerns of possible effects of currently used pesticides on local beekeeping.

In Lee County, if you would like to be notified by Lee County Mosquito Control prior to when they use ground or aerial adulticide treatment NEAR YOUR BEES, then please call 239-694-2174 and ask to be added to their NOTIFICATION LIST and provide your name, exact address where your apiary (hives) are located (including a zip code and phone number that has the ability to accept a RECORDED VOICE message... more information

Annual UF Bee College and Master Beekeeper Program
What is the difference between Bee College and Master Beekeeper Program? - CLICK HERE to find out

UF Master Beekeeper Program

Marineland, Fl.

2013 FLYER | More Info on MBP



Friday and Saturday March 7th & 8th, 2014
The Whitney Laboratory
for Marine Bioscience
9505 Ocean Shore Blvd.
St. Augustine, FL 32080-8610


Caribbean Bee College Report - courtesy Bo Sterk
photos provided via dropbox by Gary Van Cleef

Report Card | Opening Ceremony | Lectures | Pest Workshop
Honey Judging | Open Hive Learning | Apiary Visit | Mybones Wasp

View or Download Flyer
| More Info

Fall Convention 2012 Photos

2013 Introduction to Beekeeping Shortcourse

Brochure (Flyer) | Registration Form | Info and ONLINE Registration

HURRY!  Registration ends February 15, 2013... limited to 100 attendees

FSBA 92nd Annual Convention
hosted by the
 Tampa Bay Beekeepers Association

was held on Nov 1 thru Nov 3, 2012
at the
Mainsail Suites Hotel & Conference Center
Tampa, Florida

Consisted of Reception Dinner, Main Program Seminar -Conference, Awards Banquet, and Business Meeting (Election of Officers). Keynote speaker was Dr. Diana Sammataro, USDA-ARS Research Laboratory, Tucson, AZ. ~ Photos will be available (Dennis is still working on them).

Download/View Brochure

Friday and Saturday
August 16th & 17th 2013

UF Ft. Lauderdale Research
and Education Center

3205 College Ave.
Davie, FL 33314

,,, more info

Course Outline    

The UF/IFAS Lee County Extension, in collaboration with the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida (BASF) is offering a 4-week introductory beekeeping class this summer.

Classes begin on Friday August 9, 2013. Space is limited to 40 students. Students received basic startup kit including bee veil, smoker, bee box and resource books. Bees will NOT be provided as part of this package! Pre-registration is necessary for inclusion in the class. Cost of the course was $225.

Morning classroom sessions will be held at the Extension Office located in Terry Park. Afternoon practical sessions will be conducted on the farm of a BASF member beekeeper.

Deadline for registration is August 5, 2013

Third Bill signing Ceremony on 8-16-2012
Stacy Ferris, Photography for Governor Rick Scott

State Preemption/Apiculture Bill 1197 signing with Florida Governor Scott at his office, Tallahassee, FL 

Place mouse on small images below to zoom magnify examine larger photos:
  Left to Right (above) Tony Hogg, Rebecca Cowan Hogg, Samuel Hogg, Gary J. Ranker, Gov. Rick Scott, Melissa Councell, B Keith Councell, Elmore Herman

Place mouse on small images above to zoom magnify examine larger photos:

This bill gives the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) exclusive authority to regulate beekeeping, apiaries and their locations.

Florida Statute 586.10

Beekeepers May Resume Feral Bee Collection

Update from our FSBA President:

I have received the up to date information on the Rule Change allowing Beekeepers to remove and relocate live bees.  There will be a workshop on Jan. 17th in Gainesville.  Beekeepers for the time being may continue to remove live bees.  Please read the following details from Mike Page.

B. Keith Councell
President- FSBA

Download or View Document


"Ding” Darling Wildlife Society's FREE Family Fun Day


We are very pleased to announce that our local association (BASF) will be participating in the “Ding” Darling Family Day activities on Sunday, October 14, 2012.

“Ding” Darling Family Fun Day will take place at the J. N. “Ding” Darling National Wildlife Refuge from 11:00 AM to 4:00 PM.

Our group will have  “Hands on” exhibits (observation hive, etc.) and educational props to encourage those attending expecially geared to the anticipated large number of children who generally attend.

Our club will set up will be between 9:00 AM and 10:30 AM. Most exhibitors will be in one large tent, but Don has a couple of pop-up canopies also. Ding Darling WS is providing us with banquet tables and chairs. Electricity is not available. Once our exhibit is set up, we will be able to park in an adjacent lot so that we can access our vehicles should we need additional materials. Parking location is different than in previous years but the same as last year. Please see attached map and please print a copy and leave on your vehicle dashboard.  Download Map

Ding Darling WS is providing lunch for our club's exhibitors and can even arrange to man our exhibit for us while we take periodic breaks if we only have one person manning the table.

Get with Don and/or Rebecca if you want to participate or help with the educational outreach of our club.

Sunday, Oct. 14, 2012
J.N. “Ding” Darling NWR
A FREE day valued at $50 per adult

  • 10:30am FREE Flag-raising ceremony; FREE reusable “Ding” Days gift bags to the first 500 kids, EC parking lot

  • 11am-12noon FREE Talking Trash Game with prizes, EC parking lot

  • 12noon FREE Snakes Alive! Program, EC parking lot

  • 1pm FREE Amazing Live Animals Program, EC parking lot

  • 2pm FREE Snakes Alive! Program, EC parking lot

  • 3pm FREE Amazing Live Animals Program, EC parking lot

    FREE & continuous throughout the day

•FREE hourly life-size Endangered Species & Wildlife Puppets on Parade and puppet crafts garden presented by Heather Henson, daughter of the late Jim Henson Muppets creator
•FREE Naturalist-narrated 60-minute TBE Refuge tram tours (check in at tram booth)
•FREE Admission to Wildlife Drive
•FREE Face-painting in the EC Birding Room
•FREE Hot dogs
•FREE Shuttle service from TBE and IWA site (look for signs)
•FREE Touch tank at TBE
•FREE Butterfly House
•FREE Hands-on nature crafts
•FREE Environmental displays and informational booths

Event details, updates, changes, etc. are available at


Purpose: To help Freddie and Debbie Howard to pay for expenses associated with Michael's death.
Meal: Pork Steak Dinner with all the fixings, Drink, and includes Dessert. Price $8.00
Activities: Children's Rides, Raffle Tickets, and Cotton Candy!
Location: Barron Park, LaBelle, Fl
Date: October 20, 2012
Time: 11:00 AM until ?

FOR TICKETS CALL: Carol (863) 673-0269, Shirley (863) 675-1708, or The Moose Lodge (863) 675-6255
DONATIONS: May be sent to P.O. Box 2797, LaBelle, FL, 33975 and made out to "Bringing Michael Home"
Sponsored by LaBelle Moose Lodge 2398

Biography: Michael passed away September 5, 2012, was 30 years old, from LaBelle (born in Fort Myers), the son of Freddie and Debbie Howard, Jr.. He loved fishing, hunting, and the great outdoors.

Cypress Lake Middles School (CLMS) had a BEE DAY as their fundraiser kickoff by selling Bee Authentic products (Ralph Williams company).  In the weeks leading up to this event the students had studied and learned about bees and pollinators.  Don and Beth from our association provided the talk and demonstration about honeybees.  Beth is shown in her bee suit,  talking to the students about a basic hive set up, protective equipment, and backyard beekeeping as a hobby.  Don assisted the students with the observation hive and helped them look for the queen.

"This was an all day event for every class. They were 4 stations, wax candle making, finding the queen bee (the pictures around the observation hive), beekeeping equipment and protection, and finally honey and wax products. As you can see I had the easy job of telling everyone to go find the queen. Beth Ceilley was in the suit.  This event was the kick off of the schools fund raiser and it centered around the importance and benefits of the honeybee." - Don Murray

America Revealed Flight of the Honey Bee...Follow the honey bee as it pollinates crops across the United States with David Hackenberg.


Controversial Feral Bee Management versus Pest Control Issue
FSBA Committee and others to meet September 14th in Fort Myers, FL

Monday, July 30, 2012 - NEWS from Florida Dept. of Agriculture & Consumer Services Bureau of Entomology and Pest Control

Beekeepers cannot charge for removing bees. Bee management (live bee removal or relocation) for commerce (money) is only permitted by those with a PCO license. All previously stated (or unstated) exemptions made or implied by FDACS or DOACS which allowed beekeepers to perform live bee removal and/or relocation under “bee management” no longer are valid reasons for performing bee removals for hire without holding a PCO license. It has been agreed following a discussion between FDACS/DOACS directorates today that they are standing by this decision that charging for bee removals now constitutes pest control and will be enforced under the pest control law. This decision comes as a result, several months ago, of Jerry Hayes asking FDACS Bureau of Entomology and Pest Control to consider regulating live bee removal as an act of pest control.  For more information please contact:

Michael J. Page, Chief
Florida Dept. of Agriculture & Consumer Services Bureau of Entomology and Pest Control 3125 Conner Blvd. Suite N, MS C-41
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1650
ph  -  850.617.7988
Fax – 850.617.7967

The Florida State Beekeepers Association (FSBA) disagrees with and regrets the above decision.  It means that a time-honored “gentleman's agreement” to allow beekeepers to remove honey bees from structures for a fee has been abrogated. Many in the Association believe that this new policy is not warranted and are asking The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) to reconsider the more

Resources and Related Issues often found on Facebook sites:  BEES ARE NOT PESTS  | FloridaStateBeekeepers

36 Photos of our 2012 Beekeeping Class on FaceBook

Also, Rebecca has photos and info in our Newsletter: July/August Newsletter


June Meeting's Raffle Door Prizes

. . .and the proud winner of the hat!

National Honey Bee Day

was celebrated across our country on August 18, 2012.  The primary goals of the National Honey Bee Day Program include the promotion and advancement of beekeeping, education of the public about honey bees and beekeeping, and public awareness of environmental concerns as they effect honey bees.  Theme:  "Sustainable Agriculture Starts with Honey Bees"

Florida Celebrations | Official NHBD Website

State Preemption/Apiculture -
SB 1132 (Hays) & HB 1197 (Horner)

View Bill:  Web Page (html) | Document (pdf) | ...more details


View Bill: Original Filed Version | ...more details

This bill would gives the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (DACS) exclusive authority to regulate beekeeping, apiaries and their locations.  This agricultural bill which had faced early opposition has now received final passage (by both the house and senate) on Tuesday, March 6, 2012 and was sent to our Governor, has since been signed to be effective July 1, 2012.


Course Outline    

The UF/IFAS Lee County Extension, in collaboration with the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida (BASF) offered a 4-week introductory beekeeping class this summer.

Classes began on Friday July 6, 2012. Space was limited to 40 students. Students received basic startup kit including bee veil, smoker, bee box and resource books. Bees were NOT be provided as part of this package! Pre-registration was necessary for inclusion in the class. Cost of the course was $200.

Morning classroom sessions were held at the Extension Office located in Terry Park. Afternoon practical sessions will be conducted on the farm of a BASF member beekeeper.

The EPA cover-up of the damage done by neonicotinoid pesticides

Dan Rather Reports VIDEO



FSBA has added a special website addition of a FSBA Cottage Foods Page which include among the many many resources: Cottage Food Law, Cottage Food Brochure Guide by FDACS, sample label templates, links to Avery's Online Design and Print Center, resources, references... and information on using Honey Board's Hang Tags for smaller containers.

Banning of Backyard Beekeeping in our Area
In spite of warm and fuzzy feelings for the honey bee, general fear of insects is canceling out common sense!
Citations issued... Fight or Flight?  Your help is needed to replace fear/ignorance with acceptance/knowledge.

Learn about the benefits of backyard beekeeping in both residential and urban areas of our community... and why issuing citations to backyard beekeepers is not in the best interest of our community.  What you can do to help.  Equip, educate yourself, the public, media, and community leaders.  Practice good beekeeping, be a model beekeeper... use Best Management Practices.  Write a letter!

[ Sample Letter to Councilman ] | [ Contact Your City Councilman ] | [ Contact Your County Commissioner ]
[ More Resources: PowerPoints, pdf docs, etc. ] | [ Best Management Practices of Beekeeping ] | [ Sample Ordinance ]

State Wants Bee Regulations Gone

Florida may soon tell local governments that they can no longer place restrictions on beekeepers. Local ordinances have cropped up as the number of beekeepers has tripled, and industry experts say local ordinances are actually putting local residents at risk of dangerous bee stings... read the whole story

State May Ban Local Bee Laws ~ The Miami Harold

Local governments would no longer have the right to restrict beekeeping... the city of Sarasota and other well-intentioned local governments banned beekeeping, which has led to an influx of the more aggressive Africanized more

View Article and Details

View Article in Quality Cities Magazine

View Article at "The CURRENT"

SB 1132 grants the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services exclusive authority to regulate and permit beekeeping.

| Find your Legislators | Write to your Representative | Locate your Senator | Farm Bureau

Beekeeper, Laurence P. Cutts will be inducted into the Florida Agriculture Hall of Fame

Annual Banquet and Ceremony
February 14, 2012
Reception: 5:30 p.m.
Dinner and program: 7:00 p.m.

$60.00 per person,   RSVP by February 10, 2012

The banquet takes place in the Special Event Center at the Fairgrounds.  Use the Martin Luther King Boulevard Fair Entrance

Laurence will be honored at Florida Agricultural Hall of Fame banquet during the Florida State Fair in Tampa.

Laurence is a third-generation beekeeper who was instrumental in advocating for research to reduce bee hive losses in Florida. He also invented a trap for small hive beetles. Cutts served as chief of the Apiary Inspection Bureau at the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. ... read more

If interested in attending and sitting at a FL Beekeeper's table, please send to your check in the amount of $60.00 (per person) to Gary Ranker. Include your name as you wish it to be printed on the name tagClick Here for Gary's contact information.    SEE VIDEOS of Laurence Cutts

Seating assignment will appear on your name badge at the event.

The Curious Kids meet beekeeper Keith Councell to learn just how creative bees can be! From honey to furniture polish and candy, bees keep pretty busy!


  2010 Banquet Highlights | Natural Beekeeping | Top Bar Hives | Cape Honey Bee | Honey Princess | Pesticides | Monkies | Hive Products | Opening Ceremony

Better late than never.  Found Videos from last year's convention... thanks to Brendhan for posting them on web at vimeo.  For those who missed the convention, you can watch videos from last year's event using menu directly above.  A couple of videos included below for your enjoyment:


Bee Bearding at our 2010 Convention for FSBA

Our David Mendes at Day in Bee Yard portion of our Convention 2010 for FSBA

Program Brochure | Registration Form | Schedule
Bee College Honey Show Rules | ...More info

Registration is now open for the
5th Annual University of Florida
Bee College Program
Friday and Saturday March 9th & 10th, 2012

The Whitney Laboratory for Marine Bioscience
9505 Ocean Shore Blvd.
St. Augustine, FL 32080-8610

Dennis spoke at the Venice Area Garden Club, Venice, FL on Thursday, January 5, 2012.  His one-hour talk/demonstration included basic bee biology, beekeeping as a hobby, and honey from the hive to the market place.  Observation hive with live bees were on display during the presentation.  He was well-received, many questions, and much interest in beekeeping.  BASF flyers, club meeting information, Honey Queen recipes, etc. were distributed to those interested.  Pictured below is Bea Holt and Dennis.

"Thank you for your informative and entertaining presentation."  Bea Holt, VP Venice Area Garden Club, Venice, FL

Fair Brochure | Info Regarding FSBA Booth | Volunteer to work FSBA Booth

The FSBA will have a booth at the Florida State Fair, Tampa, FL ~ February 9 -20, 2012.  Bert Kelley is the coordinator. Bert carries his master sign-up sheet with him at all times during the day, so just give him a call to be added to the list.

Pot Luck Dinner and Meeting
was held on Wednesday, 12-14-11, 6:30 PM

Click Here or on Images above to see all the pictures, etc. from this event.

Orange Blossom Beekeepers Association hosted the 91st Annual Florida State Beekeepers Association Convention October 27-29, 2011. The event was held at the Orange County Extension Offices located at 6021 S. Conway Road, Orlando, Florida.

The Holiday Inn International Airport in Orlando will be the location of our Annual Banquet. They are offering room rates of $81.00 per room (up to 4 people) especially for our event. This Holiday Inn is about 3 miles from the Orange County Extension Center (6021 S. Conway Road, Orlando). They have a restaurant in the hotel but there are also numerous restaurants in this area, such a Dennys, Sonny's, Chilis, Tony Romas, Fridays, etc.

The Holiday Inn also had a FREE shuttle that took guests to The Florida Mall for a little shopping. Unfortunately, they do not go to the theme parks but will drive you anywhere within 3 miles of the hotel for free.

Note: The menu of the BBQ was changed from pulled pork and veggie burgers to Chicken as the only meat dish. All other menu items remained unchanged.

Save on Shipping Offers from certain Vendors attending this year's Convention:  Some vendors who were at the 2011 convention were able to accept orders in advance of the convention and brought/delivered orders to the Convention.  If you were a vendor who who accepted orders prior to the Convention and delivered the order to convention in order to SAVE ON SHIPPING... you were able to be added to a list of PARTICIPATING VENDOR(S) (2011)

Virginia and Dennis Riggs of the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida set-up at the Shear Image’s October Fun Fest 2011. There were many people interested in starting up beekeeping as a hobby, attending our next meeting, and looking for local sources of honey. We passed out old honey queen brochures/recipes, our new club brochure, and the post cards about our association. There were a few opportunities to discuss the joys and benefits of beekeeping and our club’s efforts in Southwest Florida. Many questions were asked and answered regarding the bees in our observation hive, the equipment and methods of beekeeping, and general questions regarding health benefits of honey… especially concerning allergies. This was their third year setting up at Shear Image’s event and sharing beekeeping knowledge and information about our association.  We encourage others in our local membership to send us photos and details of their events promoting beekeeping, so we can add them to website, blog, FaceBook, etc... Thanks.

Read the story in Alachua County Today

August 28, 2011:  Florida Honey Queen Jayla Gillaspie from Naples, Fla. and the American Honey Princess Allison Adams from Plano, Tex. had several busy days on their itinerary including:

  • Cooking demonstrations in Hitchcock's Market in Alachua
  • "Talk of the Town" radio show in Gainesville answering questions from the listeners about honey and honeybees
  • Presentation to the Honey Technical Council
  • National Honeybee Awareness Day event and announced the event's speakers, plus pointed out the queen on live frames of bees in the outdoor bee yard demonstration.

View and/or Download Guidelines (pdf)                  Read the story in the Orlando Sentinel

Small-scale beekeepers (sales less than $15,000 a year) can now bottle and sell honey without permits and without bottling in a Department of Agriculture-inspected kitchen.  August 22, 2011

The 2011 National Honey Bee Day Theme:
  Building A Sustainable Future, One Flower At A Time.

Bees attacking Lehigh Acres community (WINK NEWS) August 1, 2011... read the whole story and watch video

"It doesn't matter if you have one or ten, it's not permitted in a residential area," said Joan LaGuardia, Communications Manager for Lee County.  According to LaGuardia says Lee County only permits bee keeping in agricultural areas.

The above is yet another example of the need for educating our community leaders of the good that hobby beekeepers provide to our community and the consequences of eliminating or banning beekeeping in areas where they are needed most.

“The extreme defensiveness of the Africanized Honey Bees (which now heavily populate our area) has caused unjustified fear of ALL honeybees and has sadly resulted in some communities restricting or banning hobby beekeeping in urban and residential areas of South Florida, with apparent total disregard that hobby “backyard” beekeepers provide a much needed first line of defense against the undesirable bee invasion by providing a continuous supply of the calmer, managed European Honey Bees filling the voids throughout our community which would otherwise quickly be filled by the unwanted bees should the gentle bees be legislated out through ignorance of their importance.  A prime goal of the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida is education including education of the non-beekeeping members and leaders of our community regarding the great need and importance of permitting the keeping of managed, gentle European Honey Bee colonies throughout our communities, replacing beekeeping intolerance, ignorance, and fear with acceptance, knowledge, and love for the gentle honeybee and those who keep them." ~ Dennis Riggs

Manatee Park Eco-Detectives Summer Camp ~ Thursday, July 28, 2011

Dennis and Virginia present "All About Bees" to the young Eco-Detectives, July 28, 2011.
Melissa's Dad assisted by supplying Keith's observation hive for the demonstration
Earlier Presentations by Our Club:  [ Manatee Park 2008 ] | [ Manatee Park 2009 ].

Lee Deputies looking for bee-napper, June 27, 2011... read the whole story

HopGuard the newest Varroa Mite control has been approved for use in Florida. Several other States have been approved as well.


One year ago, May 30, 2010 our member Rachell Skerlec's youngest son, Griffin got a beehive as his birthday gift of choice for his 8th birthday. This year, on May 30, 2011 Griffin turned 9 and got a very special gift from his honeybee colony,… 2.5 gallons of golden, delicious wildflower honey!  Don Murray (VP of our association at that time) loaned his extracting equipment and helped with the very first harvest (almost a full super of honey)... more pics and details

The following are UPDATE photos of the Kenya Top Bar Hive which now has a colony of bees:

WordPress plugin

A couple of excerpts from The New York Times article:

"...New York City made beekeeping legal, and in so doing it joined a long list of other municipalities, from Denver to Milwaukee to Minneapolis to Salt Lake City, that have also lifted beekeeping bans in the last two years. Many towns, like Hillsboro, Ore., have done the same, and still other places, like Oak Park, Ill., and Santa Monica, Calif., are reconsidering their prohibitions. Nationwide, hives are being tucked into small backyards and set alongside driveways; even the White House has installed some..."

 “People want to feel that they are doing something to help,” said Dave Mendes, president of the American Beekeeping Federation in Atlanta. “Having a few beehives in your backyard can make you feel better.”

Yes!, Florida has a Honey Standard (the first to have one) ~ Only PURE HONEY will do on Florida Retail Shelves.  No unfair competition from pretend honeys, bogus honey, foreign honey blends, diluted honey, or honey cut with syrups.

Standard of Identity - Honey:  One objective is control of the pervasive, illegal practice of blending or diluting pure honey with low-cost syrups (i.e., sugar, cane, corn, etc.) thereby committing an economic fraud on both the permanent and transient residents of Florida.

This rule addresses comprehensive prohibitions against the deliberate addition of any food ingredient or food additives other than honey, sets maximum moisture content for honey, sets parameters for sugar constituents in honey and establish honey labeling guidelines. This rule provides a mechanism for the Department to enforce instances of adulteration and misbranding of honey being offered for sale at retail in Florida.

DOWNLOAD or VIEW the Standard of Identity - Honey for Florida (pdf)

Florida was the first (in 2009) to adopt a Honey Standard, followed by California, Wisconsin, ...and now North Carolina just joined Florida and the others and are ready to send out their Honey Police to combat the crime of "Funny Honey" (sweet-but-bogus honey) "Some of the people who think they've been buying sourwood all these years have actually been buying corn syrup, and they have no idea what they're missing," said John Ambrose, an entomologist and bee expert at North Carolina State University who sits on the newly created Honey Standards Board.

SPECIAL Field Meeting (Picnic) was held at our New Club Apiary,
May 29, 2011, 4:00 PM to 6:00 PM

It was a beautiful, sunny day (no rain).  Everything went very well and was enjoyable.  Thanks to all that worked to make this happen.  I am sorry I didn't take many pictures and not everybody who attended (i.e., Pen, Lisa, and others) made it into my photos.  Others took pictures of the picnic and of the hive inspections... and I will post more pictures as they become available.  Check website often for updates and changes.


WordPress plugin

Rachell Skerlec, mother of two 4-H boys earning their 4-H Beekeeping credit.  They got two areas signed off Saturday, by helping Dennis and Virginia Riggs with their observation hive set-up/display and fielding questions about bees, beekeeping, and beekeeping equipment at the Olga Community Center BBQ.  Both boys have a long list of beekeeping tasks which they must complete and get signed off by beekeepers.  The list and progress can be viewed at our BLOG.  Please help them achieve their goal(s).

Meeting Q&A Topic on April 13, 2011 was
 "Getting Started:  Installing Package Bees, Do's & Don'ts" by Dennis Riggs

Install Video 1  Video 2  Video 3

READ "How to Obtain Your First Bee Colony" by Beekeeping for Dummies Author Howland Blackiston

Suppliers: Listing of Suppliers found in American Bee Journal (ABJ)
Listing of Suppliers found at Bee Source Website
Listing of Suppliers found at Dadant
  North American Bee Hive Company
Arnold Honey Bee Company

Nuc & Hived Bees:  Jester Bee Company

Florida 4-H Honey Bee Essay Contest | Topic & Rules 4-H Beekeeping Project

“U.S. Honey: A Taste for Every Preference”

The taste and color of honey varies according to flowers where the bees gather the nectar. Each different type of plant will yield honey with a different taste...

DEADLINE:  February 21, 2011

SUBMIT TO:  Please submit essays to as a microsoft word document titled: " 4-H Essay _YOUR LAST NAME". Please use the format in the subject of your email as well.

QUESTIONS?:  E-Mail the UF Lab Staff

Commissioner Charles H. Bronson's Accomplishments

2010:  He established the nation’s first standard of identity for honey to prevent cheap, watered down, or otherwise adulterated honey products from being processed or sold in Florida as pure honey. This protects the honeybee industry and ensures consumers get pure honey when they purchase it in Florida.

He launched statewide outreach program to inform public about Africanized bees that are established in Florida. The department facilitated the formation of a regional inter-agency communications group to address the growing number of Africanized bees and the likely interactions between the highly defensive bees and people and animals. The slogan, Look, Listen and Run has been adopted by the group and is being used to inform the public.

FDACS is playing a key role in the national control strategies for the introduction of apiary pests and diseases including varroa mites and the troubling mystery disease, colony collapse disorder which is being blamed for the loss of thousands of honey bee colonies.

Jerry Hayes says it is impressive how active Commissioner Bronson has been with all Agricultural Groups in Florida, but Jerry, of course, was really impressed with his forward looking engagement with the Apiculture Industry of Florida. Jerry says to have a list of Commissioner Bronson's accomplishments include our Industry is tremendous.  A list of Commissioner Bronson's most significant accomplishments in helping Florida Agriculture be the best in the Nation can be viewed on this FDACS web page.

The Florida Beekeeper ~ September 2010 ~ Online Version

Click to launch the full edition in a new window

The Annual Advertisement Campaign for "The Florida Beekeeper"  is now underway. Please have your association or a beekeeping outfit in your area consider taking out an ad to support the State Beekeepers Association's activities.

View our advertisements in The Florida Beekeeper:

Our Full-Page Ad | Our Half-Page AdOur Quarter-Page Ad | How to Advertise & Rates for The Florida Beekeeper

Raffle for Beekeeping and other Door Prizes, usually at each monthly meeting:

Tom's Website | Tom's Art | More About Tom | Obituary

Thomas J. Allen, 69, died Monday, Aug. 9, 2010.  He will be missed and remembered by us all.  He was a wonderful, generous person. 

Tom was many things to many people.  Besides our beekeeping friend, he was a nationally recognized wildlife artist (painting, sculpting, carving), a gifted photographer, wildlife biologist, butterfly expert, an avid native plant gardener, fossil hunter and collector. He was a dedicated conservationist who loved to share his knowledge, speaking to diverse groups in many venues.  He truly loved all forms of wildlife.

Tom spearheaded education and outreach efforts for the Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida, and was a successful backyard beekeeper and honey producer. He helped other novice beekeepers with his advice and time and was a generous resource for all in the organization.

Memorial Service: was held on Saturday, Aug. 14, at 2:30 p.m., in the chapel of Coral Ridge Funeral Home, 1630 S.W. Pine Island Rd., Cape Coral. 

Contributions in Tom's memory may be made to Cape Coral Friends of Wildlife, P.O. Box 152761, Cape Coral, FL 33915, or to Hope Hospice of Cape Coral.

Tom Allen Day

2:00 PM, November 21, 2010, at Rotary Park

For the past few weeks the City of Cape Coral has been organizing an official “Tom Allen Day”. After coordinating with Sandy Allen and Mayor Sullivan, they have selected November 21st, which is Tom’s birthday, for the event. It will take place at 2 pm at Rotary Park.

What does “Tom Allen Day” mean?

Tom Allen Day will be a time for Tom’s friends to gather and celebrate his life. Mayor Sullivan will be there to present a proclamation to Sandy, which will declare November 21, 2010 to be “Tom Allen Day” in the City of Cape Coral. The proclamation will recognize the many things Tom did for the citizens and wildlife in Cape Coral. Afterward we’ll have light refreshments. We would love to have all of Tom’s friends attend this special day. Tom touched many lives in the few years he lived here. Please let everyone you know that was friends with Tom about this day.

 Help boy scout, Christopher Stowell to bring back the Beekeeping Merit badge
which was discontinued in 1995.

2010:  Christopher says, “I believe that now more than ever before the survival of the honey bee is important to all. If other boys are not encouraged to learn how to become beekeepers, the honey bee will surely die out. Not only do I feel this way, but beekeepers all across America believe in the importance of teaching the younger generations the importance of the honey bee."   READ CHRISTOPHER'S REQUEST at the Haagen-Dazs Ice Cream website.

Support the Reinstatement of the Merit Badge... SEND THE LETTER for Christopher using the form on the Haagen-Dazs website.  ADD YOUR NAME to the list of those supporting this cause using the simple online petition form.


[ American Honey Queen Program ] | [ Guidelines for Honey Queen Program ] | [ Application Form ]


Florida State Beekeepers Association is proud to announce the reintroduction of the Honey Queen Project for Florida.

If you have a daughter, niece, sister, or granddaughter between the ages of 17 and 24 she may be eligible.   THIS IS NOT "A BEAUTY CONTEST"!... and NO! she will not wear a bee costume like Dennis' daughter-in-law who is holding a teddy bear of Old Man Riggs' honey.

The Honey Queen is the "front line" between the public and Florida Beekeepers. She is the face of beekeeping and attends local fairs, gives lectures at garden clubs and schools and is the media contact for the local and state associations. The ultimate goal for a Florida Honey Queen is to attend the American Beekeeping Federation and win the National honor.


Please go to and click the "history" button. Scroll down and see the years and names of past Honey Queens.

For more information, please email Beth Fox at .

Summer Fling for 2010
Saturday, June 19, 2010

Palm Beach County Beekeepers Association has invited our association to their "Summer Fling for 2010" which will take place on Saturday, June 19, 2010 at the Pine Jog Environmental Center.  The event will include classes, speakers, dinner, board meeting.  They are looking for donations and sponsors.  If interested in participating or having a table at this event, then READ INVITATION LETTER for more information and to view the actual letter of invitation from their president, Brendhan Horne.

2nd Urban Farm Bus Tour
March 17, 2010

The 2nd Urban Farm Bus Tour, guided by Roy Beckford, agriculture agent with IFAS Lee County Extension, will be held Wednesday, March 17, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The tour will feature four urban farms located in Lee County. It is a unique opportunity to meet farmers who will share their business experience and to learn about new farming techniques being practiced locally. One of the stops will be at Keith Councell's place to see/discuss farming bees.  Samples and produce will be available. Refreshments and farm snacks will be provided during the bus tour. Lunch is also included and will be served on one of the stops. The bus will be leaving from Lee County Extension Office, 3406 Palm Beach Blvd., Fort Myers. The cost is $50 per person For additional information, call 239- 533-7514. The extension Web site is  ... not sure what time the bus stops at Keith's?


New York Times announced March 16, 2010:  "New York City's board of health voted Tuesday to lift a ban against beekeeping, legalizing the hives of hundreds of residents who have tended bees in defiance of the law.

The unanimous vote amends the health code to allow residents to keep hives of Apis mellifera, the common, nonaggressive honeybee. Beekeepers will be required to register with the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and to adhere to appropriate practices. That means they must be able to control bee swarms and ensure that the hives do not interfere with pedestrians or neighbors."

Read the rest of the NY TIMES story at BRING ON THE BEES:

West Virginia just became the first state in the nation to pass a Beekeeper's Immunity Law which limits the liability of apiary owners and operators.

 West Virginia's HB4527

Per Dan O'Hanlon (Legislative Chair of West Virginia Beekeepers Association):  "It passed our House 94-2 and our Senate 34-0. The final version of the bill is attached. Many thanks to the bill's sponsors and the many others in both chambers who helped out. The bill was made effective on passage. I will be explaining it at the WV Beekeeper's Spring Meeting in Huntington April 10th.  HOORAY!!!! "

PEST ALERT:  Argentine Ant Problem

To our knowledge (based on some quick preliminary research) currently concludes that the Argentine ant has not yet been yet reported in LEE OR CHARLOTTE COUNTIES.   CLICK HERE to see a map of where the Argentine Ants may be a problem.

Should they make it to Lee County the Argentine ants can overwhelm new colonies overnight, ultimately causing the loss of an entire bee yard.  Since the Argentine ant has not officially made its way to Lee County,  if you believe that you have lost a hive to these ants, and believe they are indeed the Argentine ant,  then per the request of Agricultural Agent,  Roy Beckford, please collect the ants in plastic zip bag and take them to Roy for positive identification.

 HOW TO IDENTIFY ARGENTINE ANT  Note:  there are ants very similar to the Argentine ant (i.e., Darwin ant).

The Argentine ant has been reported from the following counties: Alachua, Bay, Broward, Duval, Escambia, Gulf, Highlands, Hillsborough, Okaloosa, Orange, Palm Beach, Pinellas, Polk, Putnam, Seminole, Walton and Washington.  SEE MAP

Often beekeepers will falsely conclude that ants caused the demise of their colony when the ants are only there naturally cleaning up the remains of the colony which died by other means.  Please don't jump to any conclusions and help Roy to determine if Argentine Ants are here in Lee County and not just a case of mistaken identity.  Identification is difficult and there are other ants very similar.  A microscope is required for many of the I.D. steps.

Argentine Ant Information and Photos are available at Florida Department of Agriculture, Div. of Plant Industry.

More Details

Sunday Morning, November 15, 2009, 9:00 am
Keith's Orange River Loop Apiary

CLICK HERE or on Photo Map Image above
to View Larger Detailed Site Map

Florida State Beekeepers Association - ANNUAL MEETING & 89th CONVENTION
Nov. 5 thru 7, 2009

[ Detailed Agenda 3-Day Itinerary ] | [ Short Summary of Event Activities ] | [ Registration Form ]
Pre-Register for Convention by October 30, 2009 for Lowest Rates

[ FSBA OFFICERS Nomination Form 2009-2010 ] | [ FSBA AWARDS Nomination Form 2009-2010 ]
Deadline for Nominating FSBA Officers is October 19, 2009 and FSBA AWARDS is October 12, 2009.

The 89th Convention of the Florida State Beekeepers Association will be held in Monticello, Florida near Tallahassee in the Panhandle November 5-7, 2009. The Apalachee Beekeepers association will be hosting the FSBA annual meeting. In addition to the FSBA meeting they have scheduled a Welsh Honey Show at the North Florida Fair. for Sunday, November 8, 2009,  8:00 a.m. - 11:45 a.m. Bldg. 1

[ North Florida Fair Welsh Honey Show ] | [ Honey Show Entry Form ]


See picture of this GIANT yellow jacket nest that Dennis took during the interview with Keith.  Also a picture that he took of yellow jacket queen, worker, etc.   READ THE STORY at Wink News.

[ About the Festival ] | [ Tom Allen and the Other Speakers ] | [ Activities & Events ]

The Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida (BASF) joined the national effort to bring AWARENESS to the plight and challenges which face our gentle honey bees and the beekeeping industry by holding a National Honey Bee Awareness Day seminar and exhibition.

Saturday, August 22, 2009
8:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Gulf Coast Palm and Tree Nursery
8591 Gladiolus Dr., Fort Myers, FL  33908

The National Honey Bee Awareness Day (a.k.a. National Honey Bee Day), is the first ever day completely dedicated to Honey Bee Awareness from a national effort.  This event will be tailored to educating and connecting with the community with the goal of harnessing and multiplying the efforts which our local bee associations already make in their communities through this national combined effort culminating on this single day.

Considering all the important work performed by the honey bee, it is long overdue to have a day which is dedicated solely to the Honey Bee.

Gulf Coast Palm & Tree graciously allowed us to host this seminar and exhibition at their location in their facilities... and provided hot dogs, sodas, nice door prizes, etc.   [ National Honey Bee Awareness Day PHOTOS ]

[ Introduction to Beekeeping Summer Course ] | [ Photos, Video, SlideShow ]

Cost:  One can of food or $1.00
Vendor:  Grower/Displayer Application
Advertisement:  Event Flyer

This is an event you simply cannot afford to miss, nor an opportunity to miss out on.

August 9, 2008 was the debut year for the annual exhibition ‘Taste of Lee”. The response was overwhelming with more than 2,000 patrons showing up on a rainy morning. Both television and print media reported the success of the event in the nightly news and in the August 10th newspapers respectively.

This year, July 18, 2009, ‘Taste of Lee’ promises to be even bigger. Included here are the event flyer and vendor application form for you to consider participating in what is quickly becoming the premier event showcasing local producers.   For information, please call C. Cowert at 239 533-7514. 

Members Process (uncap and extract) Honey, etc. for News-Press:  READ THE ARTICLE

Powdered Sugar Dusting of Colonies found ineffective per study authored by Amanda Ellis, James Ellis, and Jerry Hayes (January 2009), "we did not find that dusting colonies with powdered sugar afforded significant varroa mite control"

IMPORTANT "CANCELLATION" NOTICE Regarding FSBA Mid-Year (June) Meeting in Bartow:

Per Dr. Malcolm T. Sanford, Executive Secretary, Florida State Beekeepers Association's FSBA Template: After a good deal of deliberation, President Reno Plenge has decided to cancel the mid year beekeeping meeting of The Florida State Beekeepers Association , scheduled for June 13 in Bartow. Several developments put the program’s effectiveness and potential audience participation in doubt.

Bayer Pesticide 'Poncho' Causes Bee Deaths in 11,500 Colonies in Germany

Urge the Department of Agriculture to act now to save bees

Honey bees are crucial to producing about one-third of all the food we eat, the Department of Agriculture has failed to meet crucial research needs to determine the cause of colony collapse disorder, which is devastating hives across the country.

Urge the Department of Agriculture to act now to save bees.  Take Action Now

Haagen-Dazs Loves Honey Bees


As part of the "Haagen-Dazs Loves Honey Bees" campaign, they created a new flavor of ice-cream, Vanilla HoneyBee.  They are also donating $250,000 (for bee research) to UC Davis & Pennsylvania State University, formed a 7-member scientific advisory board, and has a great, informative/fun website,


[ More About the FSBA 88th (2008) Annual Convention ]

BEE DAY at Manatee Park
Fort Myers News-Press

Kids get First Hand Look at a Honey of a Career

GENERAL MEETING for all interested: Saturday, September 20, 2008, 1:00 PM IN THE FIELD at Keith's Place, see details below

PAST EVENT:  Saturday, September 20, 2008 "IN THE FIELD" at Keith's, 1:00 PM.  MORE DETAILS including map, directions, agenda, etc.

March 5, 2008 - GENERAL MEETING: Membership fees were collected at the meeting and officers were elected.  It was a very important meeting.

Betterbee shipped us 20 of their new 2008 catalogs which were available at the meeting.  There are only 2 or 3 left!  Also, Old Man Riggs brought his single-frame observation hive with a frame of LIVE BEES for viewing at this meeting.  The same one used on Fox 4 Morning Blend show with Roy and Dennis.


Proposed Plans by University of Florida’s President Could
Cripple IFAS, Extension, and 4H Possibly Starting As Early As March 2008!

February 7, 2008 - GENERAL MEETING: We voted Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida as our official name.  We accepted both the proposed Constitution and Bylaws amended to include our new official name.  We set membership fee at $10.00 (annually) for our organization with the prerequisite that you must also be a member of the Florida State Beekeepers Association (FSBA).  Steering committee is remaining in leadership/organization mode until elected by the membership (next meeting).  Next meeting was set for Wednesday, March 5, 2008, 6:30 PM, at Lee County Extension Service.  Main entrance will be closed and entry will be around back (South side of building).  Meeting was adjourned and refreshments provided by Keith Councell were enjoyed after the meeting.

January 22, 2008, Tuesday, 5:00 PM,  Lee County Extension Service (Terry Park):  Second Meeting of the steering committee. General meeting date was set for Thursday, February 7, 2008, 6:30 PM at Lee County Extension Service (Terry Park Complex),  four choices for names will be presented (Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida, Beekeeping Association of Southwest Florida, Southwest Florida Beekeepers Association, and Southwest Florida Beekeepers Association), officers will be elected at general meeting, constitution and bylaws will be presented for acceptance.

December 13, 2007, Thursday, 4:00 PM,  Lee County Extension Service (Terry Park):  First Meeting of the steering committee. Draft versions of Constitution and Bylaws were presented, discussed, and modified.

November 28, 2007, Wednesday, 6:45 PM, Lee County Extension Service (Terry Park):  First Meeting of those interested.  See Minutes for more information.  Steering committee was selected for working on the details (membership, constitution, bylaws, name for organization, etc.).

Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida can use your help.  Please DONATE to support our group's efforts.
 We are a now a 501(c)3 Non-Profit Organization and your donations are tax deductible!:

 Notice:  You do NOT have to be a member of PayPal (or sign up) to use your credit card to donate, simply look during the donation process for the section "Don't have a PayPal account? and click continue.

This document was created on 9/20//08, rev. 02/20/17

©2008 - 2015 Denrig, Inc., All rights reserved.

























How do I join Beekeepers Association of Southwest Florida (BASF)?  Attend one of our meetings and pay applicable dues to our Treasurer, or you can DOWNLOAD Membership Application. Consent/Release Form, and mail it to our treasurer along with applicable dues.  Currently $12 for current year.  If you are not already a member of FSBA then please join FSBA as well; however, we do not collect dues or fees for the Florida State Beekeepers Association (FSBA), you must pay FSBA directly: Click HERE to Join or Renew your Florida State Beekeepers Association (FSBA).