Anatomy & Dissection Short Course

A two-day intensive course for beekeepers covering the field and laboratory diagnosis of diseases of adult honeybees.

The course has been developed by the National Diploma in Beekeeping Board as part of its series of Train-the-Trainer courses. It is part-funded by Fera as part of the Defra Healthy Bees Plan.

Course content

Studying honeybee anatomy helps beekeepers understand how bees have are able to carry out the many and varied tasks they perform. Honeybees have been evolving for 100 million years and have become superbly adapted to survive and prosper in their environment. The aim of this course is to study, explore and gain an understanding of honeybee anatomy and to learn the techniques required to carry out successful dissection.

Topics covered will include:

  • Setting up and using stereo (dissecting) and compound microscopes
  • Dissection tools & techniques
  • Wax embedding and slide mounting
  • Respiratory, digestive, circulatory, and nervous systems
  • The sting, flight muscles, and the glands of the head

It is recommended that those new to (or very rusty with) the use of microscopes first attend the Microscopy for Beekeepers short course.

This course will be of interest to anyone studying towards the BBKA Microscopy certificate, and to support further practical study by students preparing for BBKA Module 3 (Honeybee Pests, Diseases & Poisoning) or Module 5 (Honeybee Biology).

Target audience

The Short Courses are aimed at those beekeepers with some experience of the craft; they are not aimed at novices. We can provide guidance to applicants as to the appropriateness of our Short Courses to their stage of beekeeping. We do ask that students respect this policy. Students are welcome to apply on a first come, first served basis.

The NDB Short Courses can provide valuable discussion, learning, and hands-on experience for those planning to take the BBKA Assessments above Basic level.

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