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About the South Gippsland Branch of the GAA
South Gippsland Beekeepers (SGB) had its inaugural meeting on 21st July 2011 which attracted over 55 people on the night. As of September 2011, our club now has around 63 financial members with new comers expressing interest on a weekly basis. Formed as a division of the Gippsland Apiarists Association (GAA), we are a not for profit, family orientated club with elected office holders.
What would I get out of joining the club?
Knowledge & Skills: As a member, you will learn much about beekeeping from your fellow members, both in general discussion, through our club presentations, and by taking part in our field day activities.
Support and Encouragement: Fellow enthusiastic and supportive beekeepers are keen to share their beekeeping knowledge.
Experienced members can advise on what equipment to buy.
The club plans to have some equipment for hire including an extractor, electric knife and safety equipment, available to members for a small fee.
- Can people join who don’t live in South Gippsland?
- Yes. All interested people are welcome; including members of other Beekeeping Clubs.
- Can children join the club?
- Yes, but they must be accompanied by an adult who is a club member if 16 or under.
- How often does the club meet?
- Meetings are held every 2nd Thursday of the Month, starting at 7.30pm. The club also runs half day ‘field days’ with practical sessions. Weekend field days will replace the evening meeting for that month.
- What is the format of the evening meeting?
- We open with a short formal meeting.
- We follow this with our popular question and answer session. Members are able to raise questions on any bee keeping problems they may have, or make general enquiries regarding looking after their bees;
- We then have either a guest speaker talking on a bee keeping topic of interest, a practical demonstration, or a practical session where you get a chance to put into practice things previously discussed in the demonstration (Time permitting).
- Then it is time for an informal chat over ‘supper’ with enthusiasts and mentors keen to share their knowledge and experiences on bee keeping.
Week-end Meetings format
- It will be informal with members getting ‘hands on’ experience.
- Beginners will get the opportunity to build some confidence and develop their skills, whilst learning to recognize the warning signs of an unhealthy hive.
Are beginners welcome in the club?
- Most definitely! Most amateur beekeepers are a passionate lot and get great enjoyment and satisfaction in helping beginners.
- Although it is desirable to do a Beginners Course, these courses can be hard to get into. Most beginners learn by firstly attending a Beginners Field Day (these will be run by the club) and/or being ‘mentored’ by a more experienced club member.
- Our club members range in experience (Commercial and hobbyist), and ages. We have members who are yet to obtain their first hive and others with over 60+ hives. Some members have been keeping bees for over 40 years.
- Is it costly to start in beekeeping?
- Not really. You will eventually need to buy some basic equipment.
What about being stung?
- For most people, bee stings are not life threatening. They can be a little painful at first, and may be itchy for a few days. However, only a few unlucky people will suffer an allergic reaction that may require medical treatment. Many experienced beekeepers wear no gloves at all! For Beginners, we would recommend that they wear protective clothing when inspecting active beehives.
Next Field Day
The GAA Field Day
2nd Thursday of each month at St Peters Anglican Church Hall, Crn McCartin & Bruce St's, Leongatha. Except when a weekend session is to be held. All welcome. Hope to see you there.
Contact: Robert Fisher on: 56644323
Thursday 13th June 7.30pm Beekeeping film night
Thursday 11th July 7.30pm South Gippsland Annual General Meeting, wear a silly hat night competition.
Thursday 8th August 7.30pm Questions and answers and a speaker or demonstration.
Field Day deferred to October - November 2013.
Bring protective clothing. Some veils available to borrow, but you need to bring a hat (for the veils to go over). All Welcome
Crowd gathered around the demonstration at the Field Day
What is the format for the club night meetings?
Week-end Meetings format
Howard explaining the format of the Field day
If you would like more information
Field Day Photos held in 2011
2011-2012 Membership Fees for SGB*
If you would like to become a member of the South Gippsland Branch please contact us.
for more information
Phone: Robert Fisher (President)