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2012 Michigan Beekeepers Association Annual Spring Conference - Beekeepers Online


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Now that you have your bees all tucked in for the long Michigan winter, it’s time to get online and broaden your beekeeping horizons by learning from others, and also sharing what you’ve learned during the past season. In this talk we will survey some of the top beekeeping related destinations online, including the MBA’s brand new website! We will also provide a short tutorial on how you can easily create a professional beekeeping website to promote your own beekeeping hobby or business and grow your online beekeeping network via social media integration.

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2012 Michigan Beekeepers Association Annual Spring Conference - Beekeepers Online

  1. 1. Beekeeping Online!Jonathan R. Engelsma, Ph.D.
  2. 2. Today’s AgendaTen helpful online beekeeping resources.Establishing your own online digitalbeekeeping outpost!
  3. 3. About Me ...First started keeping beesin 1984 as a high schoolstudent (the pre-mite era!)Currently an AssociateProf of Computer Science@ GVSU (and a hobbybeekeeper.)
  4. 4. Spring is almost here!Congratulations: Your beessuccessfully wintered. You’rethinking about feeding bees...What to do while waiting forthat bee candy to finishcooking? Grab some coffee & snuggle up with your computer!
  5. 5. 10 Online Beekeeping ResourcesSome things to note: There are many good online resources for beekeeping! I may have missed some really good ones ... Don’t leave your own intuition/experience at the door!
  6. 6. #10: honey.comNational Honey Board’swebsite: Great source of technical info on honey and its benefits. Honey related recipes. Applicability: Good place to glean info that is helpful when marketing your honey crop! Site:
  7. 7. #9: Year in the Life of an Apiary (videos)Videos tutorials featuringDr. Keith Delaplane: Excellent introduction to all aspects of beekeeping. A bit dated (1993!) when it comes to treatment. Applicability: Excellent and enjoyable source of info if you are new to beekeeping.Site:
  8. 8. #8: Supplier E-Newsletters A number of beekeeping equipment suppliers have started excellent e-newsletters: Seasonable how-to info. Learn about good deals! Subscribe and it lands in your mailbox automatically! Site: (Google is your friend)
  9. 9. #7: bushfarms.comMichael Bush’s Website A leading proponent of treatment free beekeeping. Lot’s of good practical beekeeping info, though unconventional at times. Applicability: If you are interested in treatment- free beekeeping read Michael Bush’s articles. Site:
  10. 10. #6: Local Bee Club SitesVisit your local beekeepingclub’s website: Find a complete list of these sites on the new MBA site! (link below). Applicability: Find out and get involved in beekeeping happenings in your neck of the woods. Site:
  11. 11. #5: Amazon Kindle StoreGo digital with yourbeekeeping reads: E-books are slightly cheaper then print editions. Save the trees. Instant gratification. Kindle reader device recommended but not required! Site:
  12. 12. #4: Cornell Beekeeping CollectionDusty Old BeekeepingBooks & Journals Online First 40 years of the American Bee Journal. 30+ out of copyright beekeeping tomes. Full text searching! Applicability: Treasure trove of free historical beekeeping lore for the serious beekeeper. Site:
  13. 13. #3: Randy Oliver’s Website Many scientific articles on bees. Mostly articles readable by the average lay person. Applicability: Especially useful if you are trying to get your mind around treatment & sick bees! Site:
  14. 14. #2: beesource.comBee Source Forums Largest most active online beekeeping community. Hobby & commercial beekeepers. Search before posting! Applicability: Useful site to research specific questions, help others, or just connect with other beekeepers. Site:
  15. 15. #1: michiganbees.orgMBA’s New Website! The online “hub” for all Michigan Beekeepers. Links to local bee clubs and more! Up-to-date news postings. Applicability: Important resource for Michigan beekeepers and beyond! Site:
  16. 16. Establishing your ownonline digital beekeeping outpost!
  17. 17. Why create a beekeeping website?Share your beekeepingexperiences with otherbeekeepers.Raise visibility about the plightof the honeybee.Be a beekeeping evangelist (e.g.introduce others to beekeeping.)Promotional purposes.
  18. 18. Creating yourbeekeeping website Your options are: Hire somebody to do it for you. DIY - (the beekeeper’s way of life!)
  19. 19. Do it right!!Use a modern ContentManagement System (CMS): Software that makes it easy to create/maintain a website. Let’s you (or even your chimp) get the job done without having to be a web designer or programming genius!
  20. 20. WordPress is highly recommended as a CMS. A free open source publishing platform. Started as a blogging tool, but now is the most popular CMS on the Internet today. Separates stylistic elements (look & feel) from site content: makes it easy to refresh your site (WordPress themes). Widgets/Plugins: makes it easy to customize.
  21. 21. Setting up your websiteA simple three step roadmap to follow: 1. Sign up for a web hosting solution that fits your budget. 2. Select/configure a WordPress theme that suits your tastes. 3. Enter/maintain your website content.
  22. 22. WordPress HostingGet started free accounts: get extra storage use your own domain ad free!
  23. 23. WordPress HostingThere are manyinexpensive WordPresshosting providers:
  24. 24. WordPress ThemesThink of the WordPress themeas your website’s “skin”.Lot’s of free and inexpensivethemes.Easy to switch to a new themein the future.
  25. 25. WordPress Themes
  26. 26. Be sure to setup a nicemobile theme!
  27. 27. Creating Web ContentWYSIWYG content editing
  28. 28. Creating Web ContentPages = static content
  29. 29. Creating Web Content Posts = periodic updates
  30. 30. Creating Web Content Social Media integration is a great way to drive traffic to your new website!
  31. 31. Free Online Tutorial!
  32. 32. SummaryDon’t get bored during thebeekeeping off season! Grab a cup of coffee and join beekeepers from around the world online! Take some time to establish your own online beekeeping outpost!
  33. 33. Any Questions?Jonathan Engelsma’s Contact Info: email: web: Like us! /hudsonvillehoney