Welcome to NewBee University!
About NBU founder, Matthew Doucette
For a few years I thought that it would be neat to keep bees. It didn’t get much further than that until my wife bought me a short beginners book on beekeeping. Little did she know that was the beginning of the end! I loved reading about bees, they fascinated me, and from that point on I was determined to become a beekeeper. Unfortunately, I didn’t know how to begin; Where do I buy a hive? How do I get the bees? Where will I put them? These concerns cause me to choose the easy out: “I’ll get bees next year.” Summer passed and fall arrived and I still had more questions and concerns about how to get started, but decided to up the ante and bought a hive and package of bees to be delivered in the spring. Now I HAD to figure out this whole beekeeping thing or I was going to be in trouble. Soon after ordering my first hive I read that having two hives had many benefits, as one hive can be compared to and even used to support the other hive, I decided to buy a second hive further committing myself to becoming a beekeeper. Before placing the order for a second hive and package of bees my brother and sister-in-law asked if it was much more work to keep an extra hive, to which I said it wasn’t, and they committed to purchasing a 3rd hive. Now before I had ever seen a hive in person I had committed to buying 3 hives and 30,000 bees.
I asked a friend if he would consider letting me have bees on his farm, expecting the typical hesitation and fear that surrounds bees, however to my surprise he said he had been wanting bees on his land but didn’t have the time to do it himself. He was on board and with a location secured everything else seemed to fall into place. Having exhausted myself watching dozens of YouTube videos on beekeeping I went to my first beekeepers association meeting and for the first time got to talk and make connections with real beekeepers. These connections would prove very valuable. I soon arranged with one of the meeting’s veteran beekeepers to purchase a nuc, and it was to be ready the NEXT WEEK, a month before my package bees were scheduled for pickup. I was ready!
Through my months of preparing to become a beekeeper I met several other NewBees who hadn’t been able to spend as many hours sifting through beekeeping resources as I had and still had very rough foundations in beekeeping. I found that the learning curve was nearly enough to drive them away from their desire to keep bees. I also witnessed these NewBees ask veterans for advice on how to get started and getting a long list of beekeeping details from equipment preferences, to the most recent findings on pesticide use, to what kind of queens have the best hygienics,….all of which is great information to discuss with a second, third or fourth year beekeeper, but not someone who hasn’t even started. These conversations seemed to leave many NewBees more confused than before they asked their question. I found myself speaking up and trying to help these NewBees by sharing with them what I found was important for me to GET STARTED beekeeping, not details on how to perfect the craft of beekeeping. I found that I very much enjoyed sharing my new found passion with NewBees, as well as utilizing my background as teacher. I found that I could relate to these NewBees because I was just learning as well. From these experiences with NewBees and my love of teaching, NewBee University was created. My goal is to provide a thorough, but not overwhelming, resource specifically dedicated to learning HOW TO BECOME A BEEKEEPER. NewBee University is dedicated to graduating as many students as possible through BEEKEEPING 101 and send them on to a life of ongoing learning and love of honey bees and beekeeping. I hope you will take some time and explore NewBee University. If you are interested in becoming a beekeeper I hope you will stick around and learn the essentials to getting started.
Thank you for visiting NewBee U,
NewBee University Founder and Instructor,