Welcome

Please Join Us at our Monthly Meeting
Beginner Beekeeping Presentations
Listen to Educational Speakers

 

The next Beginner Beekeeping Session will start at 6:15 PM before the meeting on Monday, February 27, 2023 at the Nassau County Extention Office in Callahan.

 


About Us

Nassau County Beekeepers Association is recognized throughout the beekeeping community for its important role as mentors to beekeeping hobbyists, professionals and sponsors.

No less important is the associations continuing efforts to educate the public about the vital importance of the honey bee. The group is able to accomplish these goals through superior membership that gets involved and stays involved.


The annual dues for membership in this Association are twenty dollars ($20) per year paid to the Treasurer. This shall be adjusted by vote of the membership when deemed necessary. This sum will cover membership, and payment of annual dues constitutes one vote.


New and Experienced beekeepers helping each other with questions, quandaries, and other beekeeping related challenges.


 


Association Documents


  • Constitution – for Nassau County Beekeepers Association

  • By-Laws – for Nassau County Beekeepers Association

 


 


Monthly Meetings


member

All meetings are open to the pubic, you
do not need to be a member to attend.

4th Monday of the Month
6:30 PM Beginners Session
7:00 PM Regular Meeting


Located in the Nassau County Extention Multi-Use Building
at the County Fairgrounds
543350 US-1, Callahan, FL  32011



Membership Information

Welcome to the Beekeepers of Nassau County and neighboring communities, and thank you for your interest in becoming a member.


Membership Application

Please download and fill out an application to join us today and mail to:

  Nassau County Beekeepers Association
  C/O Tina O’Brien
  1844 Highland Drive
  Fernandina Beach, Fl 32034


Reasons to Join

  • Network with other local beekeepers
  • Learn more about beekeeping at the monthly educational meetings
  • Discover local and statewide beekeeping events and activities
  • Find answers to your beekeeping questions and issues
  • Buy or sell beekeeping equipment or bees
  • Become knowledgeable about current research and production practices
  • Keep current with local and state beekeeping and honey regulations
  • Hear guest speakers with noted titles, experience, or published research
    related to beekeeping
  • Help promote beekeeping in Nassau County and your local community
  • Enjoy hands-on experience from mentors and experts in beekeeping
  • Annual membership dues are $20

Association Officers


President: Tina O'Brien

Vice-President: Scotty Bichsel

Secretary: Sharon Davenport

Treasurer: Carolyn Applegate

Membership Coordinator: unfilled


Web Master: Gordon Reilly

 


 


 


 


Our Mission


The Nassau County Beekeepers Association promotes a passion for beekeeping and an interest in the role all pollinators play in our society and environment. The association educates and advocates for the honey bee and its wild pollinator friends through immersive talks, beehive mentorships, breeding locally adapted bees and an increased focus on bringing scientific data gathering into the hive through our innovative Beehive Monitor program.


The association partners with organizations to maximize the impact of providing the education and experience necessary to enact change in the next generation. Through our adaptive approach to education and research, we continue to increase the public's awareness by providing any opportunity for all ages to learn about the life saving benefits pollinators provide.


 


Queen color codes

  2020, 2025 – Purple
  2021, 2026 – White
  2022, 2027 – Yellow
  2023, 2028 – Red
  2024, 2029 – Green

 


 


 


 


 


 


 

What is the state of honeybees in Florida?


In general, honeybees are on the decline. Troubling numbers come out every year that suggest dangerous trends for honeybees. However, in Florida, honeybees are doing well in comparison to the population at large. Florida is one of the top 6 states for honeybee populations with more than 4,000 registered beekeepers, and even a state agency that has the authority to inspect hives. Unfortunately, honeybees face many challenges from beetles to pesticides, so it is important to continue this growth and educate the public on just how important honeybees are.

 


What factors contribute to the decline of honeybees?


Though many factors have contributed to the decline of the bee population, from harsh winters causing increased rates of die-off to the destruction of natural habitats. Above all else, it is human factors that contribute to the decline of honeybee populations. Dangerous pesticides that are popular in commercial growing, lawn care, and gardening are decimating the honeybee populations.

 


What does local beekeeping do for the honeybee population?


Local beekeeping is essential for improving and growing the honeybee population. Quite simply, as people have become busier and less engaged with the outdoors, interest in beekeeping has declined right along with it. By supporting local beekeepers, you are helping to ensure that these essential pollinators come back from this decline stronger than ever.

 


 


Help Save The Bees


Bees are in decline all over the earth and their loss poses a serious threat to the plants that rely on them and in turn all of us!

Operation Honey Bee's mission is to connect communities of the world, to spread awareness, educate and lead the sustainable movement that will preserve bees and other pollinators for future generations.


 


10 Ways to Save the Bees


1. Plant a Bee Garden:  One of the largest threats to bees is a lack of safe habitat where they can build homes and find a variety of nutritious food sources. By planting a bee garden, you can create a habitat corridor with plants that are rich in pollen and nectar. You don’t need a ton of space to grow bee-friendly plants — gardens can be established across yards and in window boxes, flower pots, and planters. You can also get involved with local organizations and governments to find opportunities to enrich public and shared spaces. An ecellent place for planting suggestions specific to Florida is the Florida Native Plant Society.


2. Go Chemical-Free for Bees:  Synthetic pesticides, fertilizers, herbicides, and neonicotinoids are harmful to bees, wreaking havoc on their sensitive systems. Avoid treating your garden and green spaces with synthetics. Instead, use organic products and natural solutions such compost to aid soil health and adding beneficial insects that keep pests away like ladybugs and praying mantises.


3. Become a Citizen Scientist:  Join a global movement to collect data on our favorite pollinators! Gather photos and other information about native bees and upload them to the iNaturalist app. Make it a group activity for friends by hosting a BeeBlitz event! Together, we can learn about the bees in various sites and cities and identify opportunities for nurturing them.


4. Provide Trees for Bees:  Did you know that bees get most of their nectar from trees? When a tree blooms, it provides hundreds — if not thousands — of blossoms to feed from. Trees are not only a great food source for bees, but also an essential habitat. Tree leaves and resin provide nesting material for bees, while natural wood cavities make excellent shelters. With deforestation and development on the rise, you can help bolster bee habitats by caring for trees and joining tree-planting parties in your area.


5. Create a Bee Bath:  Bees work up quite a thirst foraging and collecting nectar. Fill a shallow bird bath or bowl with clean water, and arrange pebbles and stones inside so that they break the water’s surface. Bees will land on the stones and pebbles to take a long, refreshing drink


6. Build Homes for Native Bees:  Did you know that, with the exception of honeybees, most bees are solitary creatures? 70% of solitary bees live underground, while 30% live in holes inside of trees or hollow stems. Species like bumble bees build their nests in undisturbed land, and you can provide safe haven for them by leaving an untouched plot of land for them in your garden! “Bee condos” — which have small tube “apartments” — allow species like mason bees to take up residence. They’re easy to make or purchase


7. Give Beehives and Native Bee Homes:  Keep honeybees, nurture native bees, or help gardens and schools around the U.S. and Canada grow food and strengthen local environments. Our Sponsor-a-Hive program creates safe havens for precious pollinators in underserved communities by supplying the tools, gear, and education needed to successfully home bees.


8. Teach Tomorrow’s Bee Stewards:  Inspire the next generation of eco citizens with guides, lessons, and activities to get them buzzed about bees! Educators can use our collection of free resources to bring nature and ecology into the classroom — and the hearts of children everywhere.


9. Host a Fundraiser:  Host a fundraiser online or do something you love to help #BeeTheSolution. Your #BeeTheSolution fundraising events create community building and information sharing opportunities that inspire while raising funds for The Bee Conservancy programs. It’s an easy, fun way to make a serious impact.


10. Support Local Beekeepers and Organizations:  Local beekeepers work hard to nurture their bees and the local community. The easiest way to show your appreciation is to buy locally-made honey and beeswax products. Many beekeepers use products from their hives to create soaps, lotions, and beeswax candles. Plus, local honey is not only delicious — it is made from local flora and may help with seasonal allergies! You can also give time, resources, and monetary donations to local beekeeping societies and environmental groups to help their programs grow. If you live in Nassau County or in a nearby community, we hold monthly meetings (details here) where you can learn about supporting honeybees.


 


 


 


 


 


 


Imagine a grey world without almonds, apples,
or fragrant flowers


Unfortunately, that’s the shocking future we face if we don’t work to help our most precious pollinator: bees. Far from being a niche concern, bees lie at the heart of our survival – and they have been dying at unprecedented rates. Their hard work is not only essential to healthy ecosystems, but to sustaining animal and human life too.

Each year, bees are experiencing massive die-offs throughout the U.S. and Canada. In 2017, the rusty patched bumblebee was the first bee added to the endangered species list in the continental U.S. A 2019 survey from the Bee Informed Partnership states that nearly 40% of U.S. beekeepers lost their colonies during the previous year. Compared to 1947, the U.S. honeybee population has declined by 60%.

Bees pollinate one-third of the food we eat.

From apples and squash to buckwheat and coffee, bees are responsible for pollinating most of the fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts that are essential to our diets. Honeybees in particular play a huge role in agriculture, contributing over $15 billion to the value of US crop production.

Without Bees, We'd Lose:
   100% Almonds
   90% Apples
   90% Onions
   90% Blueberries
   90% Cucumbers
   90% Carrots


 


 


 


 


 


 


 


Beekeeping Calendar


This beekeeping calendar is a tool for all beekeepers in Florida, small scale to commercial operations. This calendar is meant to be a reference point for beekeeping management and is not comprehensive. The check-list can be used to identify management issues or concerns in the apiary. Understanding the plants blooming in your area can help to identify the nectar and pollen resources available to your bees.

Additional infofmation and a yearly beekeeping management calendar can be found here at the UF IFAS Extension website.