The honey bee program at Clemson University consists of three broad areas including extension, research, and teaching. One of our primary goals is to help provide the citizenry of South Carolina the opportunity to learn the importance and value of our honey bees and other insect pollinators. Our honey bees have been challenged by several new diseases and pests over the past several years and they deserve our best efforts in protecting and preserving this precious natural resource.
EXTENSION – information fact sheets have been developed on honey bees and related insects that offer guidance and recommendations on good insect management. Three “News for South Carolina Beekeepers” newsletters are published annually that inform beekeepers of upcoming beekeeper meetings and includes articles of major importance to beekeepers. Beekeeping educational efforts are promoted by the South Carolina Beekeepers Association and several local associations throughout the state. Graduate students are expected to make significant contributions in support of the above extension initiatives.
RESEARCH – our apicultural research program is focused mainly on applied honey bee pest management with major emphasis on integrated pest management. Investigations have been conducted on the management of small hive beetles, wax moths, varroa and tracheal mites. Students are expected to conduct their research using the scientific method and use critical thinking in their plans, data analysis, and publications.
TEACHING – ENT 308/Apiculture is a 3 credit course offered alternating years to undergraduate students to teach them honey bee biology, disease and pest management, and other colony management skills. The South Carolina Master Beekeeper Program is offered to the general public as a public service program initiative in cooperation with the state and local beekeeper organizations.