Welcome to the Andover and District Beekeepers Association (ABKA) website.
ABKA is a thriving association of amateur beekeepers looking after the interests of existing members and newcomers to beekeeping in the Andover area (Map of Andover and District territory).
We are one of the many associations that make up the larger body of the British Beekeepers Association (www.bbka.org.uk) and our association is one of the many that make up the Hampshire Beekeepers Association (www.beetalk.org.uk)
We meet regularly to exchange information and keep abreast of issues relating to beekeeping as well as simply to socialise. Topics we cover include bee health, beekeeping techniques and theories, bee products, advice and access to BBKA training modules as well as practical apiary visits.
We look forward to meeting you or helping with your enquiry as an Andover resident, with an interest in bees!
Winter Lecture Programme and Beginners' Courses
Andover BKA Winter Meetings and Beginners' Course will be held at Picket Piece Village Hall, Walworth Road, Andover SP11 6LY starting at 7:30pm prompt. Anyone who would ike to learn more about beekeeping is most welcome to attend, but please contact the membership secretary beforehand if possible - details can be found on the Contacts page
Association Summer Events 2022
Date Event Venue
Sun 24th July Summer Lunch Cholderton
Sun 14th August Knepp Visit Knepp
Apiary meetings 2022
Dates and hosts below:
Saturday 28th May Alan Telfer
Saturday 11th June Amanda Prideaux
Saturday 2nd July Rosemary David and Manoochehr Gerayesh
Detailed information for each visit to follow
Practical Beekeeping Training at Cowdown Apiary 2022 -
We are pleased to announce that the Cowdown training apiary is again open. Dependent upon weather conditions and the availability of the site team access can be gained from 1000 hours for two hours on Saturday mornings between the end of April and the end of September and at other times by prior agreed appointment with Mike Barrie, the apiary manager.
Please note that there are no toilet facilities on site and due to its open grassland, plain environment and at times high fire risk that smoking and naked flames other than to prime a smoker will be permitted and even then under strict control.
Monthly Diary Guide -
Introduction and Preparation - TBA
Hands in hive - TBA
Hands in hive - TBA
Main honey flow – super management - TBA
Assessing bee temperament - TBA
Uniting colonies - TBA
Preparing for Winter - TBA
See Side Menu for Directions to Cowdown and details of Activities
Any meeting cancellations will be notified on this page
Beginners Course Dates and Content starting in January 2023
Bee Keeping Introductory Training - now completed
Are you interested in taking up beekeeping as a hobby, working with honey bees or just for the sake of environmental study? If so, then this is your opportunity to join with us Andover Bee Keepers in their forthcoming Introductory Course for bee keepers due to start in January – next year 2023.
Zoom may be used as the method of presenting the training over seven one hour sessions (Tuesday evenings between January through to the end of March) you will be taken through basic steps which can lead to practical learning at our Cowdown apiary under the guidance of experienced bee keepers.
Open to all ages without any necessary experience and certainly no test! The cost of the course will include the text book appropriate for the course.
Beekeeping and natural history
Equipment and forage
The beekeeping year
Disease and colony health
Swarms,queens and mating flights
Alternative Natural Beekeeping
Practical session - will be held in Picket Piece Village Hall
Summer training at Cowdown Apiary site
History and natural history of the honey bee
Equipment used in beekeeping, and Forage
Invertebrates generally; placing the honey bee into context
Colony management, inspections, neighbours and apiaries
Diseases, pests and problems
Queen bees, the management of swarms, managing apiaries
The beekeeping year including, honey processing -- extracting, filtering, storing, and eating your first jar!
Winter work and putting kit together
REQUIREMENTS. Notebook and pencil.
COST: To be advised - we will provide you with the latest beekeeping book for homework. Please do not buy anything yet as there is a lot of unnecessary and useless stuff out there waiting for the unwary.
COURSE REGISTRATION OPENS: October 2022