A Little Background Information
Thank You for visiting our site. My name is JoAnn Poirier and I am a local beekeeper in the Clarington area of southern Ontario. Currently living in the little hamlet of Mitchell Corners Ontario, my best friend and husband Chuck and I have been the very honored custodians of the bees in our care for many years now.
We often get asked about what got us interested in beekeeping. Well let me tell you. When we bought the house we now live in, Chuck and I were fortunate that the first acre of the property was occupied by an apple orchard. The first spring in our new home I was saddened by the fact that I did not see a single bee in our orchard. It was obvious what was needed, we needed to get some BEES.
So I took a weekend beekeeping workshop and purchased my first two hives. The rest is history as they say. The first few years I did not know what I did not know. I got smart and joined my local beekeeping association. Then I found a beekeeping mentor. My now dear friend Reg Hicks, (that's his smiling face in the picture below) took me under his wing and showed me the ropes. At year five of keeping bees, Reg said to me, "Well, I guess you're a beekeeper now." Did I mention Reg is 90 and manages over 100 hives. Through his guidance I have learned the necessities of beekeeping, in addition to a few non-beekeeping lessons that keep life interesting.
Through the years, we have come to understand the many complexities of being a beekeeper. You are not only tasked with maintaining healthy bees, you are dealing with parasites and honey bee diseases and how best to treat them, learning on the job skills such as queen rearing, hive maintenance, swarm control, plant identification, recognizing starts and finishes to different honey flows, woodworking (to keep the cost of equipment down) and the various ways to package and market your honey and hive products. You learn very quickly that you have to be a "jack of all trades" kind of person.
But in the end, the skills required and the on-the-job training you get does not compare to the bliss you feel when sitting by your hives and observing these glorious insects bringing in pollen and nectar each day. The hum of these amazing creatures is worth its weight in honey. There is something about "working" a hive that brings such calm. Nothing like it out there.
Our work with the honeybee comes from a deep caring and concern for the fragility of the honeybee. We have all become aware of the current worldwide concerns of the declining bee population. Our goal for this website is to hopefully educate those who visit here, share some knowledge and discoveries, and ignite in others our profound passion for these incredible insects.
We are proud members of the Durham Regional Beekeepers Association and I have served as the past treasurer for the Club. We are also registered members of the Ontario Beekeepers Association. I work full time as a Registered Nurse and full time as a devoted companion to the many bees that have shared their existence with us.