September 10, 2009 Meeting Minutes
The first meeting of those interested in hobby beekeeping was called to order by Jerry Owens at 6:05 p.m., September 10, 2009. The meeting was held in the Rapid City Public Library. In attendance were approximately twenty-three people.
The first order of business was the showing of the movie “City of Bees”. After the movie, Jerry explained several items in the movie further or gave reasons why there were discrepancies between the movie and beekeeping in this area. Items discussed were how and when to acquire new queens, the adding of honey supers, discarding queen cells to keep the hive from swarming and colony collapse. John Halverson relayed some recent information concerning a correlation between feeding bees corn syrup and colony collapse.
Jerry indicated the proposed purpose of forming a club was threefold: 1) to disseminate information to members regarding hobby beekeeping activities, 2) to support hobby beekeepers and 3) to advance the knowledge of bees and beekeeping to help preserve and protect the bee population.
Jerry was asked about the cost of getting started in keeping bees. Jerry explained that he has a business that supplies hobby beekeepers and basically he charges $350 for a hive (consisting of two hive bodies or brood boxes, 2 honey supers, the frames for these four boxes, and a queen extruder), bees and his assistance for a year. Jerry also explained that there are many outlets for beekeeping supplies on the internet and elsewhere.
Jerry was asked how much honey could be gathered by the hobby beekeeper on the second year. Depending upon the hive and the year, about 20 pounds could be harvested the first year and 30-60 pounds the second year. As an example, the hive that Jerry got his honey for the fair from is in its fourth year and he got 80 to 100 pounds of honey from it in August and expects about another 20 to 40 pounds in late September. Bees need approximately 60 pounds of honey to feed on during the winter which equates to the bottom two hive boxes.
The question was asked about wintering bees over and what protection was needed. This depends upon where the hive is located and what natural protection is in place. There are several things a beekeeper can do such as surrounding the hive on three sides with insulation or nothing may be required.
A discussion was held about potential names for the club. Several suggestions were made including: Western South Dakota Hobby Beekeepers Association, Wannabee Hobby Beekeepers, Black Hills Buzz Club, and Black Hills Beekeepers.
It was felt that as the club is in the beginning stages, meetings should be held once a month. The Library is a central place to meet and there is no cost.
There was a lengthy discussion regarding the amount and purpose of dues. Jerry suggested dues were necessary for such items as having a booth at the fair and other venues, as well as incidental expenses such as newsletters, etc. This led to a discussion on the requirements of applying to the state as a not-for-profit club, articles of incorporation, the election of officers, a board of directors and by-laws. Mary Bodensteiner and Maggie Engler volunteered to research these requirements and report back to the group.
As a result of this discussion, Mary brought up the fact that as a not-for-profit club there was no charge for a booth at the fair. Mary also inquired if there was a need for honey to be collected in a commercial kitchen to comply with the existing city regulations (such as is required for selling jellies, jams, salsa, etc. at the Farmers’ Market). Jerry advised that since there is no actually processing or changing of the honey from one state to another, this is not a requirement.
The next meeting will be held on October 8, 2009 at the Rapid City Public Library (second floor meeting room) from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.