Your Source For Beekeeping News, Information and Entertainment
April 17, 2023

Eastern Apicultural Society (EAS) with Mary Duane and Lou Naylor (S5, E44)

On today's episode, we welcome Mary Duane and Eloise (Lou) Naylor of the Eastern Apicultural Society. EAS was founded in 1955 for the "promotion of bees, education of beekeepers, certification of Master Beekeepers and excellence in bee research. EAS...

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On today's episode, we welcome Mary Duane and Eloise (Lou) Naylor of the Eastern Apicultural Society. EAS was founded in 1955 for the "promotion of bees, education of beekeepers, certification of Master Beekeepers and excellence in bee research. EAS Master Beekeepers are recognized worldwide for their beekeeping skills and ability to educate others in the art of beekeeping.

Each year, EAS hosts an annual conference in the state or province of one of their member organizations. This year, the 68th annual EAS conference goes to Amherst, Massachusetts. The conference has excellent speakers, many who you've heard on this podcast including Dr. Sammy Ramsey, Dr. Tammy Horn-Potter and Dr. Tom Seeley. 

The conference also hold workshops, a world class honey show and of course, the EAS Master Beekeeping Program Testing and Certification.

We hope you enjoy the episode. Leave comments and questions in the Comments Section of the episode's website.

Links and websites mentioned in this podcast: 

Honey Bee Obscura


This episode is brought to you by Global PattiesGlobal PattiesGlobal offers a variety of standard and custom patties. Visit them today at and let them know you appreciate them sponsoring this episode! 

We welcome Betterbee as sponsor of today's episode. Betterbee’s mission is to support every beekeeper with excellent customerBetterBeeservice, continued education and quality equipment. From their colorful and informative catalog to their support of beekeeper educational activities, including this podcast series, Betterbee truly is Beekeepers Serving Beekeepers. See for yourself at

Thanks to Strong Microbials for their support of Beekeeping TodayStrong MicrobialsPodcast. Find out more about heir line of probiotics in our Season 3, Episode 12 episode and from their website:

We welcome Blue Sky Bee Supply as a sponsor of the podcast! Check out for the best selection of honey containers, caps, lids, and customized honey labels. Enter coupon code PODCAST and receive 10% off an order of honey containers, caps, lids, or customized honey labels. Offer ends December 31, 2023. Some exclusions apply.

Thanks for Northern Bee Books for their support. Northern Bee Books is the publisher of bee books available worldwide from their website or from Amazon and bookstores everywhere. They are also the publishers of The Beekeepers Quarterly and Natural Bee Husbandry.

We welcome Fischer's Bee-Quick as a sponsor of today's show! If you use fume boards during your honey harvest and are tired of the absolutely horrid smell of typical fume board repellent products, you should try Bee-Quick. If you are are using bee escapes because you can't stand the smell of a fume board, but are dealing with clogged escapes, full of dead bees and honey supers still full of bees... you should try Bee-Quick this season. Listen to today's episode for a special 15% discount code for your next purchase on Amazon.


We hope you enjoy this podcast and welcome your questions and comments in the show notes of this episode or:

Thank you for listening! 

Podcast music: Be Strong by Young Presidents; Epilogue by Musicalman; Walking in Paris by Studio Le Bus; A Fresh New Start by Pete Morse; Wedding Day by Boomer; Original guitar background instrumental by Jeff Ott

Beekeeping Today Podcast is an audio production of Growing Planet Media, LLC

Copyright © 2023 by Growing Planet Media, LLC

Growing Planet Media, LLC


S5, E44 – Eastern Agricultural Society (EAS) with Mary Duane and Lou Naylor


Carolyn O'Neill:My name is Carolyn O'Neill, and I'm a hobby beekeeper with My Bees in New Canton, Virginia. A beautiful, tiny town in Central Virginia. Welcome to Beekeeping Today Podcast.


Jeff Ott:Welcome to Beekeeping Today Podcast, your source for beekeeping news, information, and entertainment. I'm Jeff Ott.

Kim Flottum:I'm Kim Flottum.

Global Patties:Hey, Jeff and Kim. Today's sponsor is Global Patties. They're a family-operated business that manufactures protein supplement patties for honeybees. It's a good time to think about honeybee nutrition. Feeding your hives protein supplement patties will ensure that they produce strong and healthy colonies by increasing brood production and overall honey flow. Now is a great time to consider what type of patty is right for your area and your honeybees. Global offers a variety of standard patties as well as custom patties to meet your needs.

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Jeff:Thank you, Sherry, and a quick shoutout to all of our sponsors whose support allows us to bring you this podcast each week without resorting to a fee-based subscription. We don't want that and we know you don't either. Be sure to check out all of our content on our website. There, you can read up on all our guests, read our blog on the various aspects and observations about beekeeping, search for, download, and listen to over 200 past episodes, read episode transcripts, leave comments and feedback on each show, and check on podcast specials from our sponsors. You can find it all at

Thank you Carolyn for that great opening. Folks, you too can help us open the podcast by recording yourself just like Carolyn did and sending it to us at questions@beekeepingtodaypodcast. Make sure to include your name, your town, and how many bees you keep. Be creative and have some fun with it. On today's episode, we chat with the president and the board chair of the Eastern Apicultural Society, Mary Duane and Eloise or Lou Naylor.

EAS have been the model regional beekeeping organization for many years, both in their summer conference and their master beekeeper certification. EAS master beekeepers are recognized worldwide for their skill and knowledge of bees and beekeeping. Their summer conferences are educational and entertaining, not to mention great social gatherings. This is a show you'll want to hear. Speaking of summer, what are your plans for your honey harvest this year? If you're tired of the stink of fume boards, then you should try Fischer's Bee-Quick. This week, receive a 15% discount on Amazon by using the promo code [listen to the podcast for the code].

I see Kim is coming in from a bee yard and the spring inspections. Let's get ready for our chat with Mary and Lou, but first, a quick word from our sponsors.

BlueSky:This episode is sponsored in part by Blue Sky Bee Supply. Check out for the best selection of honey containers, caps, lids, and customized honey labels. Inner coupon code podcast and receive 10% off an order of honey containers, caps, lids, or customized honey labels. Offer ends December 31st, 2023. Some exclusions apply.


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Jeff:While you're at the Strong Microbials site, make sure you click on and subscribe to The Hive, the regular newsletter full of interesting beekeeping facts and product updates. Hey, everybody, welcome back to the show. Sitting across the virtual Zoom table right now are two representatives from the Eastern Apicultural Society. We have Mary Duayne and Eloise or Lou Naylor. Welcome, ladies, to the podcast. Look forward to having you on the show.

Mary:Thanks for having us.


Kim:Mary, we know that you're the president of EAS this year and my experience with being president is that you're pretty much in charge of this meeting coming up this summer, correct?

Mary:Yes. That seems to turn out that way. Yes, indeed.

Kim:Lou, what's your role this year?

Lou:I am chairman of EAS.

Kim:You're the chairman. We have the two people of power here. [laughter] I'm looking forward to getting to EAS this year. I've missed a couple. Been stuck at home, no traveling, and all of that. We're looking forward to making it to Massachusetts this summer and why we have you here today is to tell everybody else why they should be there too. First off, give us a little background of how you got to where you are today, and then we'll talk about the meeting coming up.

Mary:I got involved in beekeeping in 1999 and was, was thoroughly enjoying it, and then perchance, a gentleman named Gus Kimawitz who was a member of EAS and he mentioned to me one day, "Did you go to the conference last week?" I said, "What conference?" He said, "The one that was in 2001 in Cape Cod, Massachusetts." I never knew about EAS in 2001 and I missed the conference in my own state. The following year, I attended EAS, I met Kim Flottum and other members of EAS, and I was hooked. From that point on, I've been to over 20 EASs. I find it a real valuable use of my vacation time. It's a true vacation.

Lou:I started beekeeping in 2007. I had a man move in next door to me that was in his 80s at that time and had kept bees for many years. I asked him if he would be my mentor and he agreed. It was not, and I'm not sure of the year of this conference, but it was Boone, North Carolina was when I first heard of EAS and I took myself down there, and loved it. The following year started volunteering in small ways and just kept going every year and volunteering however I could and here I am today and I recommend it.

Jeff:The journey the bees take you on is wonderful.

Mary:S true.

Kim:This year in Amherst Mass, you're going to meet at the university there?

Mary:Yes. That's our land grant college in the state of Massachusetts, UMass Amherst. It's just a lovely location in the Pioneer Valley and it has all the facilities to accommodate the beekeepers. We're going to have the state apiary MDA or Massachusetts Department of Agriculture is on campus, on a side portion of the campus. They're involved helping us and we're going to move bees right onto the main campus itself. The facilities are terrific. There's dorms, there's a beautiful hotel in the conference center, great food.

We know that beekeepers love to eat in UMass has been ranked number one by the Princeton Review for the best food in college campuses. We're planning for a good time to welcome all the people to us.

Kim:Well, it sounds good. Sounds like you've got a good start anyway. If you're listening and you're not familiar with EAS, it has a pretty typical week planned out. They're similar every year, of course, different people, but you're having a short course this year?

Mary:July 31st, which is a Monday, and August 1st, which is a Tuesday, that will be our short course, which is more focused for the beginners, but you can certainly be an experienced person. I always learn something when I take the short course. That's Monday and Tuesday, and then the main conference itself opens up on Wednesday and goes Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. August 2nd, 3rd, 4th, that's the main conference. A lot of folks are more experienced beekeepers will come in for the conference portion on those days.

We'll have keynote speakers on Wednesday morning, Thursday morning, and Friday morning. In the afternoon, we'll have breakout activities, field trips, workshops. We tell folks, come for a day, come for the short course, come for the conference, and then you'll get sucked in and you'll say, "I want to go for the whole week." That's what I usually plan on doing is for the whole week.


Kim:It's attractive every year. We probably should give some of these folks listening a little bit of background on EAS. Where and when did it start in all of those things?

Lou:We're coming up on 50 years soon of EAS. It started at Cornell as far as I know. I know 20 years ago, we were in Ithaca, which is where we were last year. EAS is the largest non-commercial beekeeping organization in the US. We have over 2,400 active individual memberships. The conference every year draws anywhere from 300 to 800 people. We had 300 when we were in Kentucky, a few years ago during COVID. 2020 we had a cancel, 2021 we held it in Kentucky and we had close to 300 then. It was a smaller conference than usual, but it was a good one. We are hoping for a big one this year.

Mary:We certainly are. EAS was started in 1955, so this is quite the 97th if you could consider the covid year version of EAS.

Kim:97, that's a good history to fall back on for sure. You meet once a year. Basically, as I understand it, you start the week with the short course and you just explained that how that works. Then you go into the main conference and that's mostly speakers in the morning and workshops and other activities in the afternoon. Who are your speakers going to be this year?

Mary:We have a large list of speakers. Starting us off on Wednesday are going to be Dr. Tammy Horn Potter. The theme for EAS in Massachusetts is past, present, and beeyond, B-E-E-Y-O-N-D. We're starting Wednesday with Dr. Tammy Horn Potter to talk about the history of beekeeping, because who knows it better than Tammy? Then on what Thursday, we're going to have Judy Woo Smart? Then on Friday, Dr. Samuel Ramsey. Those are our key speakers. After our key speakers on any given day, we're going to have some of the award winners for EAS research grants will take place after that.

Then as you said in the afternoon, we'll have more hands-on breakout sessions along the way. We also have coming this year, Dr. Thomas Sealy will be coming and doing bee lining one afternoon and talking. Kirk Webster from Vermont is coming. Bob Benny is coming. We have a whole list of people coming. We'll get you the website to look up all the names of the confirmed folks.

Jeff:We'll make sure that the website for the conference and for EAS is listed in the show notes of the podcast.

Kim:One question right now, can I register so I make sure I have a place there? [laughs]

Lou:Not yet. We haven't opened registration yet. We're still working on the final details of meals, but certainly, you could join now and that is the best way to be ready for the conference to open is activate your membership if you haven't won already.

Kim:I'm a life member so I'll take a pass on that joining that again, but I've been a life member for a bunch of years, I guess.

Lou:What a bargain.

Mary:Beekeepers are frugal. Getting the life-- I did life membership as well after the first year and it's been such a bargain.

Kim:Yes, it was.

Jeff:Do you have to reside in any state specific to be a member of EAS?

Lou:No, you can come from New Zealand, Australia where we do have people come from, anywhere can be a member. However, we have member states that go from the east coast all the way over to Mississippi River and Canadian provinces all the way down into Florida. People come from the islands, people come from anywhere.

Mary:You really do meet people all over the place.

Kim:The people from the states, the state members or the members states, I guess I should say each have a director on the board of directors of your organization. You meet, I'm going to say what, three times a year is that still how often the board of directors meet?

Lou:Typically four times a year now

Kim:Four. Okay, that's good. I always look forward to the directors' meetings because when I was part of EAS, we always had a director's meeting during the conference, which just was-- I had enough going on without a director's meeting during the conference [laughs] so I can register for your meeting, dorms and a hotel on campus that I can stay at.


Kim:Giving that information, as soon as registration is open, I imagine your dorm application will be with that. How do I get to the hotel?

Mary:Actually UMass Amherst Hotel is in the conference center and that hotel is booking now. You can call them up or go on the UMass campus hotel website and you can book a hotel room right now. We're doing an independent of the conference that way. That's open right now for you folks. Then the dorms will be registering at the time that you register for the conference. We have a cool setup on dorms this year. We have suites. They're giving us air-conditioned suites. Some people listening might laugh who went to the Cape Cod conference in Massachusetts in 2001?

There was no air conditioning and Massachusetts has heard that over and over for the last 20-some-odd years. [laughter] These rooms are air-conditioned and they are a suite of rooms. When you go for a dorm, you are in a suite. Each suite has four individual bedrooms and those individual bedrooms are locked. Those bedrooms share two bathrooms and in that suite, there is their kitchen facilities, a little couch, a little recreation area in the suite itself. We think the accommodations and the dorms are excellent and the hotel accommodations in UMass are outstanding for any hotel.

Kim:I know the air conditioning story. When we did EAS in Worcester a lot of years ago, they didn't have air conditioning, but all of the stories in Worcester sold fans like you wouldn't believe. [laughs] Air conditioning is mandatory I think, isn't it?



Mary:In Massachusetts is going to be. [chuckles]

Jeff:Kim, was that Worcester, Massachusetts, or Worcester, Ohio?

Kim:Worcester, Ohio. Just down the road. Jim Tew and I put together one, one year and neglected to check on air conditioning. I learned my lesson fast. In the afternoon you don't have speakers, per se, you have got projects and demonstrations and things like that. What kinds of things go on in the afternoon then?

Mary:No, we do have speakers in the afternoon doing 50-minute presentations on maybe a little bit of their research. Each speaker that comes, we ask them if at all possible to do three presentations. It could be a hands-on presentation or it could be a talk on collecting water. Tom Seally's going to be talking about collecting water and honeybees and that's an individual session. Each of the speakers will be pretty much doing an afternoon session, which we call them breakouts. There's small little section of people in there.

The biggest problem in EAS is always going to be, there's three or four things going on at the same time. You got to choose between the three and that's the worst part. You're in the hallway deciding do I hear this outstanding person or this outstanding person?

Kim:The other half of that is, is it raining? [laughs]

Mary:I don't know who's in charge of weather. We haven't decided. I think we'll give that to Lou. Lou's in charge of weather.


Lou:Yes, I've been in charge of that before. [laughs]

Mary:Because we had some weather issues at Ithaca, so that was a problem.

Jeff:Do you register for a session while you register for the conference or is that on the day of the start of the conference, you just choose whichever session you want to attend?

Lou:There are a few sessions that we ask for pre-registration such as microscopy, some of the queen mirroring classes, just so that we have enough supplies for everyone and seats. Also, we've had it with candle making and some of the other things like that. For the most part, you do not need to register. In the beginning short course, you don't have to stay in the beginner's track. There's a beginner, intermediate, and advanced.

You can go between the three of those and hear whoever you want to hear, whatever you're interested in. Every day we will have an apiary track also where people can go out into the bee yard with Don Hopkins and Jen Keller and have hands-on experiences in the apiary.

Mary:That's where I learned to mark queens out in the apiary with Don Hopkins. It was wonderful.

Kim:I think Don's been doing that job for 100 years. [laughter] He's been out there every year forever, I think. He's really good. Excellent teacher. One of the things I heard, if you're in Amherst and you're just down the road from Greenfield, I'm hoping L. L. is going to take a visit. Is that right?

Mary:Oh, yes. Dr. Langstroth himself has agreed to come to the conference. We're going to start off on Wednesday night's social supper is going to be with Langstroth. Then Langstroth is going to tell us and compare beekeeping in his time to a beekeeper in the present. They're going to go back and forth after that dinner for our little social event on that. I would encourage people to take the 15-minute drive to see the site where Langstroth was in residence at this parsonage and he discovered bee space while he was there and he wrote The Hive And The Honey-Bee. It's cool to walk on the same steps that Langstroth walked on, but yes, he will be at the conference.

Kim:Yes, it is. I was privileged to give us a talk in his church a few years ago, [laughs] so I'm very familiar with it. I've got some things I want to toss at Langstroth, so I'm definitely going to have to be there and see if I can find out some more things about him.

Mary:Not locked on stone, but I believe Dan Conlan, who's a distinguished beekeeper with the Russian program, who lives right nearby lives in Amherst, who's on the planning committee. I believe he will be going back and forth with Langstroth on traditional ways of keeping bees and so forth.

Kim:We had Dan here just a little while ago talking about the Russian Bee program. Real familiar with Dan. Then I went to talks in the morning. I went to some workshops in the afternoon. What goes on in the evening, anything?

Lou:There's a lot of fun that goes on in the evenings. Wednesday night we typically have a barbecue and Bee Olympics. Bee Olympics has maybe four or five different events such as lighting the smoker and keeping it lit the longest, bringing pollen to your hive, bringing water to your hive, putting the frame together fastest with only a hive tool, and things like that. Being able to pick out the queen, which is mostly a drone that's been marked.

Mary:Paul Kelly from Canada is coming down to the conference to be one of our speakers, He's helping to organize and I'm sure he is coming up with devious tasks such as Lou was mentioning here for our-- there'll be ribbons and there'll be a trophy. We have the Massachusetts people that we've challenged to win this contest.

Lou:Oh really? Are they practicing ahead of time?


Mary:Rumor has it they are practicing spitting drones. That's the rumor.

Jeff:Spitting drones. S-P-I-T-T-I-N-G. Spitting drones?

Mary:Yes. That took place up in Canada.

Jeff:There you go. [chuckles]

Lou:Then Thursday night is our live auction. We have a banquet and then a live auction. That is usually very lively. We have auctions daily also during the week. We have a virtual auction that you can participate in whether or not you come to the conference. Friday night is our more formal banquet. You can imagine beekeepers being formal, best jeans. [laughter] At that time, we'll be presenting awards. Awards to the Hambleton, the Divelbiss, and the Morse Award winner.

Jeff:While Kim is sorting through his notes, we'll take this quick break and we'll be right back.


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Kim:You've got some awards you've just mentioned. Can you tell me a little bit about them? You mentioned Divelbiss and Hambleton and Morris. Why are those important?

Lou:The first one is the James I. Hambleton Memorial Award. James graduated from Ohio State University in 1917 when he specializes in beekeeping and entomology. The award was established by the Eastern Apicultural Society of North America to recognize research excellence in apiculture. The Roger Morse Award, Roger A. Morse, nominations are welcome from any person in the field of apiculture and self-nominations are acceptable. Roger Morse's, outstanding teaching, extension, service, regulatory award supported by the Anita Weiss Foundation, is given annually to recognize an individual in teaching extension and or regulatory activity in the field of apiculture.

The Divelbiss Award is given to people who have influenced the public, reached out to the non-beekeeping public to explain the value of honeybees in our lives. That is given out at the conference and no one knows ahead of time until the banquet who's going to win the Divelbiss Award.

Mary:That's a big surprise.

Kim:It is, and it's quite an honor. Just for Phil in the Anita Weiss, people who support that award. Ed Weiss was a longtime beekeeper from Connecticut. He ran a bee business there and he was a strong supporter of beekeeping in that state. He firmly believed that the people that get this award deserve it and he was more than willing to help sponsor it. Just a little background there.

Jeff:I just want to add a little trivia. Ed Weiss's book, The Queen and I was the first book I read on beekeeping, and shortly after I got my first beehive. That's a good award. It must be. It must be a fantastic award.


Mary:I've seen people who've won that night, tears come to their eyes and their family. It's just a very distinguished honor to have to be that award.

Jeff:I think all three of them are certainly. That's the night of the banquet, then that's Friday night. One of the things you have, I know that there's a honey show that goes on during EAS and if I come there, I'm supposed to bring some of my honey. Do you have the rules posted someplace?

Mary:Massachusetts has reserved a gorgeous room in the upper floors of the conference center for the honey show. It's run by Christine Delaney from Massachusetts. There's numerous categories and quite bragging rights in order to win it. We have legitimate judges that come on in and assess all quantities of cut comb, combed honey, jarred honey, craft items, beautiful wax products. It's quite the honor to be the champ of the EAS Honey Show. Big competition. We encourage everybody to bring their entries. Read the rules, it calls for three jars, don't bring two. Bring three jars if it calls for the rules. Read, read, read the rules, so we have no discussion on that.

Kim:They're on your webpage, right?

Mary:They're on the EAS website. Yes.

Jeff:I'll encourage anyone who's never been to a big regional, big national honey show to make sure you check out the honey on display at the EAS conference because they put on a phenomenal display of various honeys and you see all the different colors, all the preparation that goes into doing competition at this level. It's just so much fun to see.

Mary:That'll be open to the public on Thursday to see who the winners are. Then they're given a beautiful engraved silver plate at the award dinner that night.

Kim:Oh, how nice. Something to take home.

Lou:Yes. We also auction off those winners that allow it. You could go home with a prize-winning jar of honey. We also have a honey exchange. If you don't feel like you want to compete, you can just bring a jar or two of your own honey, and go home with someone else's to try.

Jeff:That's fun.

Kim:When I was a part of EAS, that's when that got started. You bring your jar in when you first arrive at EAS probably on Sunday or Monday, you can spend the week looking at everybody's jar there and pick out the one that you want and then be first in line.


Mary:That's a long line and people line right up that to get their first selection.

Kim:What have we missed about the conference?

Lou:The master beekeeper.

Mary:Master beekeepers.

Kim:Tell me how to be a master beekeeper.

Jeff:I will tell you that's how I first heard of EAS. As a Ohio beekeeper, it was you need to become an EAS master beekeeper. That's the first exposure. I assume I'm not outside the norm of many beekeepers as the symbol of being an EAS master beekeeper is a good status to have or good certification to have. Tell us about the EAS master beekeeper. What does that mean?

Mary:I actually happen to be an EAS master beekeeper. I challenge myself. You have to have five years of beekeeping experience to sit for the examination process. That examination is only given at the EAS conference. That's once a year. The conference takes place, it's once a year they will give the exam and there are four parts. There's the oral exam where they ask you a bunch of questions and how you would interact with the public and they assess if you would be a good representative for beekeepers and EAS.

There is a field exam, you suit up and you go into a hive with a master beekeeper and they ask you questions all about, read the hive, what's happening in this hive? They put together some very challenging hives, some with problems. Is it queen right? Is it not? It's quite the challenge to figure out what's going on in that hive. Then there is the lab practical. You go into a lab room, it brings you back to your high school or college biology days of being in a lab situation.

There are microscopes set up. You have to look underneath that small high beetles, various stages of small high beetles. These are dissected and you're looking at the respiratory system. There's a whole bunch of gadgets. Beekeepers, we like our gadgets. What's this gadget for the year I was doing it, there was a cloak board. What's the cloak board, what's it used for? Then there's the standard written exam, multiple choice fill-in-the-blanks. It brings you back once again to your school day sitting down.

See a bunch of adults who haven't taken exams for many years sitting down and it's a little nitpicky details because they believe and I agree with them, sometimes the smallest little detail makes the biggest difference in managing your hives. You have to pass all four sections in order to get your Master Beekeepers certification. If you're unsuccessful in one section of it, you can come back and retake that section. Let's say you didn't pass the written portion, but you passed the other three, to hold onto those three, you come back and you have five years to complete that missing section or sections that you have, and you need to complete it within five years to earn the certificate of an EAS master beekeeper.

You must sign up to take the exam ahead of time. You can't walk into the conference and say, "I'm going to sign up for the master beekeeper." No, that's not how it works because they have to plan ahead how many exam-- the current master beekeepers volunteer their time to be the testers in the exam process. They need to know ahead of time, how many exams to print, how many microscopes to get set up. It's quite a distinction. On the EAS website, the master beekeepers have a whole list of material they recommend you read to prepare for this.

You also have to have someone be a mentor to sponsor you and write a letter on your behalf that you are ready for this exam process. It's a challenge and it's an accomplishment and a challenge. It's rigorous.

Jeff:Absolutely. What's the minimum passing score on all the tests?

Mary:I think it's 85 now. I'm lucky, I think I snuck in when it was 80, but I believe it's 85 now on each section. You can't get by with a 60 like you did in high school. That doesn't float.

Jeff:[laughs] Why were you looking at me when you said that?


Kim:I think you hit the right word there rigorous. If you go through all of that and you end up being a master beekeeper, it's something to be incredibly proud of and it will make you a good addition to your local organization being a resource definitely.

Jeff:Besides the master beekeeper program and the Honey show and the awards and the presentations, what else is going on at EAS conference?

Mary:Massachusetts, we're lucky. We have a young beekeeper named Billy Crawford, who runs New England apiaries and he has a large-scale honey processing facility, which is about 50 minutes away from the campus. He's graciously offered to give tours of his facility and how he went from one hive to thousands of hives along the way. We're going to offer tours for people and we'll have buses to take them to his facility and back. Then, believe it or not, there will be non-beekeepers at this conference who will come, their spouses or partners will come.

They may not be interested in honeybees all day long. I find that hard to believe, but that's the case. Those folks, Thursday during the conference we're going to have a field trip out to the Bridge of Flowers, which literally is a bridge covered with flowers. We have a master gardener who will give a tour of this. It's about half an hour away from campus. Then after that, this tour will go to Historic Deerfield, Massachusetts. If you want to learn about the history of New England, Historic Deerfield is a place to go. We're excited to offer that to the non-beekeepers or the beekeepers. It's either way, but we think that's planned more for that.

I shouldn't forget, on Thursday we also have a kids' program. We're inviting kids from the neighborhood and different organizations to come on in. We have a team of six very enthusiastic Massachusetts beekeepers that are, can't wait for the kids to show up and they'll go through all phases of beekeeping with the kids. Their parents must attend with them because it's not babysitting, it's educational in nature. That'll be on Thursday. This is all on the EAS website.

Kim:If I got to attend an EAS conference for a week, I'd need a week off just to catch up on sleep and rest. [laughter] It's a very full week. What part of the conference have we missed?

Lou:We are a society. We are not just a conference where we see people once and that's the end of it. People come back every year. We look forward to seeing each other from all over. Sometimes you keep in touch all year and I've made friends that have lasted. When you sit down to lunch, I might sit down next to Kim Flottum not even knowing who he is, and talk to him about beekeeping. That's part of the wonder of being at EAS. Everybody's welcome. Everybody is made to feel welcome. One of the parts I like. The other part we haven't talked about is late-night Yazi. [laughter] You don't need to catch up on your sleep, play some Yazi till 1:00 AM and then get up and go to class.

Mary:The sharing of a little bit of meat. I don't know if we should go into that. Massachusett has some good meat makers, so we're going to have a little bit of meat to be shared on the side.

Jeff:Besides the unofficial meat tasting, is there an official meat tasting part of the competition?

Mary:Oh, it is indeed. Massachusetts has a excellent mead maker, the colony in Kingsboro, Massachusetts. I hope that Rick will be entering his meat. I know we'll be sampling it in the evenings. [laughter] I think they drink on college campuses, but I don't know. It's been a long time since I've been on a college campus.

Jeff:[chuckles] With the sweets that are available, I'm sure that there'll be some meat tastings going on.

Kim:Lou, one of the things you just mentioned back in the day when I was constantly at EAS meetings was sitting down at lunch at a table full of people I didn't know. By the time lunch was over, you knew eight more people. You do that five days in a row for breakfast, lunch, and supper and you end up knowing a lot of people and being connected to them in a special way.

Lou:Yes, I agree. The first EAS I went to somebody just said, "Come sit here, there's room at this table." It was Carol Cantrell, she was the secretary of EAS eventually. It's been a great experience for me. I look forward to it every year.

Jeff:Not only educational, but it's also a great social event as well. Ladies, it's been a wonderful experience having you on the show. I enjoyed learning more about EAS and look forward to one day getting to EAS conference. I think that will be great fun.

Kim:Oh, you got to make it, Jef. At least once. [chuckles]


Mary:Massachusetts has got room for you.

Jeff:[laughs] Excellent.

Mary:This will be a good year.

Kim:Where's it going to be next year? Where's EAS going to be in 2024?

Lou:Maryland. I just went out and looked at University of Michigan Dearborn for the following year.


Lou:Yes. It's looking good.

Kim:It's almost my backyard. That sounds good.

Mary:I like that about EAS. You get to travel along the East Coast and up to Canada. That's always a nice and exciting thing when you go to the conference and you figure out where it's going to be the following year.

Jeff:Thank you for joining us today and we look forward to learning more about the conference and more about EAS and encourage other beekeepers to go out to your websites. Links are in their show notes. Those viewed that are interested in furthering your education about beekeeping, take a serious look at the EAS Master Beekeeper program. It is really worth the time and energy. Thank you for joining us today.

Kim:Thanks, ladies. This was fun.

Mary:Thanks. Always good talking bees.

Lou:Enjoyed it. Thank you.

Jeff:Kim, you're going to be going to EAS this summer?

Kim:We're planning on it. I haven't been for quite a few years between COVID and other things going on in the world, but this year we're looking to coming back. I enjoy the Langstroth trip. Looking forward to that and of course, just seeing the 400 people that will be there that I probably know.

Jeff:It sounds like it's, I won't say a party in a wild and crazy time, but it sounds like quite the party and experience for beekeepers along the East Coast and from around the world it sounds.

Kim:You got to take a half step back and it's not just East Coast, it's the eastern half of the US. You will meet people from pretty much every state in the eastern half of the US and then from a lot of other places too. It's not just East Coast.

Jeff:It sounds like they have a fantastic show lined up and encourage any of our listeners who are along the Eastern half of the United States or we'll be visiting the East Coast to check out Eastern Aquaculture Society Conference in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Kim:Yes, definitely.

Jeff:That about wraps it up for this episode. Before we go, I want to encourage our listeners to rate us five stars on Apples Podcasts wherever you download and stream the show. Even better, write a review and let other beekeepers looking for a new podcast know what you like. You can get there directly from our website by clicking on the reviews along the top of any webpage. We want to thank our regular episode sponsors, Global Patties, Strong Microbials, and Betterbee for their longtime support of this podcast. Thanks to Blue Sky Bee Supply, Fischer's Bee-Quick, and Northern Bee Books for their generous support.

Finally, and most importantly, we want to thank you the Beekeeping Today Podcast listener for joining us on this show. Feel free to leave us questions and comments at "leave a comment" section under each episode on the website. We'd love to hear from you. Thanks a lot, everybody.

[00:38:47] [END OF AUDIO]

Lou NaylorProfile Photo

Lou Naylor

Chair of Eastern Apicultural Society (EAS)

Current Chair of Eastern Apicultural Society. Former Director from New Jersey. Founding President of the Mid-State Branch of New Jersey Beekeepers. Owner of Moorestown HoneyWorks.

Mary DuaneProfile Photo

Mary Duane

President of Eastern Apicultural Society (EAS)

Mary has been fascinated by Honeybees since attended her first beekeeping course in 1999. She is the President of both the Massachusetts Beekeepers Association and the Eastern Apicultural Society (EAS). She maintains between 10-15 colonies of her own each year. She is coordinating the Massachusetts committee organizing the EAS 2023 conference which is in Amherst MA July 31- August 4th 2023. She has attended over 20 EAS conferences.

When not busy attending to her hives, she enjoys sharing the many health benefits of bee hive products with the public.