Meet our Mentors
With a rich diversity in beekeeping experience and general interests, there's a Hive Buddy beekeeping mentor for all beekeepers.
Caroline has a love for creating a sustainable future which sees her working with likeminded people throughout the West Gippsland region.
Not only has she found a passion for bees and beekeeping, but for the very meaning that beekeeping gives to her everyday life.
Anna is an experienced beekeeper, with a PhD in botany, and a wealth of knowledge about the environment, pollinators and hive management.
Anna has a professional and scientific perspective, and an engaging and encouraging approach to support beekeepers to be the best they can 'bee'!
Hear from some of our beekeeping mentees...
Andrew - Gippsland, Victoria
Caroline has really helped me grow and mature as a beekeeper, generously sharing her extensive knowledge, experience and mindful approach to beekeeping. Her mentor-ship style is informal and friendly, you won't regret becoming one of her 'bee buddies'.
Maree - Bendigo, Victoria
The group sessions meant I could learn from everyone's bees, not just my own. My mentor was up to date with her knowledge and kept us informed of current conditions.
Ron - South Australia
I finally can say that I have the confidence to go it alone with my hive inspections.
Amanda - Victoria, Australia
Caroline is a very down to earth beekeeper with lots of valuable ways to help you through the trials and the joys of keeping bees. She is full of passion and love of bees and how we can better look after them.
How does a beekeeping mentorship work?
Firstly we want to point out that there's a mentor for everyone.
Our mentorships are group learning programs that give you more people to capture experience from than just your mentor.
The twice monthly, online group sessions allow time for you and your mentor to work through seasonal issues and explore any problems that have emerged recently.
Between mentorship sessions, jump on to Hive Buddy to spend time with your mentorship group or explore the whole of the Hive Buddy ecosystem. There's plenty to learn and lots of it is free...
Beekeeping is Tough
It's normal to be excited and full of enthusiasm when you first start beekeeping. We know from experience that this only builds as you progress further into this amazing interest...yes it's addictive and hard to stop once started!
Success in beekeeping comes down to experience...but what if you don't have much experience? In this case you're relying on two things, either good luck or good advice.
Something inevitably goes wrong, maybe not in the first season, maybe not in the second, but at some point your experience will be challenged and you'll be stretched in ways that can be really uncomfortable. After all, no beekeeper wants to cause the death of their own hives.
But there is help!
So how do you get ahead of the issues and stay current and up to date with seasonal conditions and tasks? You get a mentor! But here comes your second problem! A good mentor with spare time is as rare as hens teeth. But you don't have to be alone.
Hive Buddy have online mentorship groups for beekeepers with high quality mentors at a fraction of the cost of in person mentoring.
The mentor meetups occur online and will keep you updated and informed and help you work through any issues you face.
Best of all you have a whole group to learn from!
Hive Buddy has plenty on offer for beekeepers
From beekeeping courses, beekeeping clubs, social media groups, online forums and websites it can be daunting to find your place as a new beekeeper.
But what if we brought the best of this together in the one place?
Another essential element before you start beekeeping is to participate in introductory beekeeping course. This will orient you around what is required to become a beekeeper, what equipment you will need, the basics of honey bee biology and how to handle bees as safely as possible.
When the course is over you will have the base level knowledge to consider if beekeeping is a good fit for you. Many people will stop at this point but for those that continue, the real learning journey is about to begin.
At this point Hive Buddy can help you grow with our Mentorship programs.
Another great place to get help is from a beekeeping club. Most beekeeping clubs offer a monthly program which includes guest speakers, beginner support and beehive field inspection days, all for an annual fee.
Not everyone can fit in with the timings of these meetups or find them sufficiently worthwhile to meet their learning needs.
Hive Buddy Bee Club is fully online. Not only is there a monthly meetup but all sessions are recorded and available to the Hive Buddy Bee Club community. It's like having catch up TV for your bee club!
These can be hit and miss and some people are really put off by the behaviour of some of the people in these groups.
Hive Buddy is (as far as we know it) Australia's only online group with a dedicated Community Manager.
We have a safe place for beekeepers to ask questions and browse the experience of others.