Syllabus of Examination for Proficiency in Apiculture:
Intermediate Examination Scientific Paper


Although the following is a comprehensive outline of the syllabus, the student is also expected to be up to date with modern ideas on the honeybee, particularly where these ideas are dealt with in newer textbooks or in lectures that (s)he has attended. 

Natural History of the Honeybee

The student will be able to:

  • describe the stages in the life cycle of the three castes and the average number of days for each stage of metamorphosis
  • describe the function of each caste in the life of the colony
  • give an elementary description of parthenogenesis in the honeybee
  • give a simple description of sexual reproduction in the honeybee, the aerial mating of the queen and the drone, and the multiple mating of the queen
  • give a simple description of the communication dances of the honeybee workers
  • give a simple description of queen substance and its influence on the production of queen cells
  • give a simple description of food sharing in the colony,

 

External Anatomy and Internal Biology

The student will be able to give:

  • an elementary description of the structure and segmentation of the exoskeleton
  • a detailed description of the external structure of the queen, worker and drone honeybee
  • an elementary description of structure and an elementary appreciation of the function of the appendages of the honeybee worker (the mouthparts, the antennae, the legs, the wings and the sting)
  • an elementary description of the general structure and function in the adult worker bee of the alimentary canal and the digestion of sugars and pollen
  • the excretory system, including the function of the malpighian tubules
  • the respiratory system and the interchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide
  • the exocrine glands of all three castes, but only the hypopharyngeal, mandibular glands, salivary glands, wax glands and Nasonov glands
  • the circulatory system, including the heart, dorsal and ventral diaphragms.

Note Simple labelled diagrams of all of the above are required.

 

Nectar and Honey

The student will be able to give:

  • an elementary account of the composition of nectar and its variations
  • an elementary account of the conversion of nectar to honey, including chemical changes of the basic sugars and the storage of honey by the bee, chemical equations are not necessary
  • the approximate percentages of the major constituents of a honey of average composition
  • an elementary description of the process of granulation of honey
  • an elementary description of the process of fermentation in honey
  • an elementary account of the importance of pollen in the nutrition of the honeybee

 

Honeybee Forage, Plants and Pollination

The student will be able to give:

  • an elementary account of the process of pollination of a flowering plant using labelled diagrams
  • an elementary account of the process of fertilisation of a flowering plant using labelled diagrams

 

Diseases, Pests and Pathogens

The student will be able to give:

  • an account of the signs of Varroosis, how it spreads, methods of detection, monitoring and treatment
  • an account of the signs of Small Hive Beetle infestation, how it spreads, methods of detection, monitoring and treatment
  • an account of the diagnosis of American Foul Brood (AFB) and European Foul Brood(EFB) and a tabulation of the differences between the signs of these two diseases
  • an account of the ways in which foul brood infections can spread from colony to colony
  • an account of the action necessary to take when AFB or EFB is found, including treatments and sterilisation of equipment
  • an account of the major provisions of the statutory regulations relating to Foul Brood, and their implementation in Ireland
  • an account of the signs and treatment of chalkbrood disease
  • an account of the signs of, and the recommended treatment for adult bee diseases Nosema and Acarine
  • an account of colony starvation and possible remedial actions
  • describe the Bailey frame change
  • describe the Shook swarm
  • an account of the expert services available to the beekeeper

Note recommended answers on diseases should include causative agents, signs, symptoms, effect on colony, spread and treatment/prevention.

 

Honeybee Products and Their Preparation for Show and for Sale

The student will be able to:

  • give the approximate composition of an average honey
  • give an account of the properties of honey including specific gravity, viscosity, hydroscopicity and reactions to heat
  • give a description of the main constituents and physical properties of beeswax
  • give an account of the uses for, and marketing of, beeswax
  • give an account of the use of other bee products such as pollen, royal jelly, venom and propolis
  • give an account of the preparation of bee products for the show bench

Note this syllabus is indicative not exhaustive (look on both scientific and practical for completeness)

Social

News

Gormanston 2017!

The provisional programme for Gormanston 2017 is now available.This years Gormanston will be taking place from 30th of July - 4th August! We have a series of great talks and workshops for all levels, from beginners to intermediate and senior. Check out the programme of events and book your place before places run out!

Please note that this may be subject to future changes so keep checking back to get the most up today information!


COLOSS Survey 2017!

The annual COLOSS survey on winter colony losses is now available for completion online by clicking the link: https://tinyurl.com/mapfgof

Closing date is 1 June 2017

Please participate…Thank you


Hedge cutting

If you wish to report hedge cutting out of season
Contact the people below
National Parks & Wildlife Service
7 Ely Place
Dublin 2
IRELAND D02 TW98
For General Queries:
Tel: +353-1-888 3242
LoCall 1890 383 000 (within Republic of Ireland only - rates charged for the use of 1890 numbers may vary among different service providers)
Fax: +353-1-888 3272
E-mail: nature.conservation@ahg.gov.ie
Web: www.npws.ie


Disease Sampling Form

Teagasc offers a Honeybee disease diagnostic service to beekeepers, more information available here


Bee Research Project!

FIBKA are co operating with CIT to run a beehealth project to improve the genetic diversity of Irish honey bee stocks, funding needed either corporate or individual. Click here for more info!


All-Ireland Pollinator Plan

Great news! - The All-Ireland Pollinator Plan 2015-2020 is released this week. Click here for more info!


Got something to say!?

We are looking for people to submit articles on beekeeping or anything related to it, on a once off or a regular basis. If you think you could put pen to paper, then please email the Beachaire Manager, Dermot O'Flaherty at  manager.beachaire@irishbeekeeping.ie