The Vermont Beekeepers Association is watching the COVID-19 situation and will provide updates on this page.
At this time, all North & South Yard Beekeeping Workshops have been cancelled until further notice. We've sent out an email to members announcing our first online workshop. Registration for this first one is limited to VBA members.
If you are ill and are unable to care for your colonies for any reason, you should reach out via the VBA web page forum (login required) to seek help in caring for them. The State bee inspector, Brooke Decker, encourages beekeepers to seek assistance and to be certain that colonies are cared for even if the owner become incapacitated.
The Vermont Beekeepers Association is proceeding with plans for the summer meeting in Brandon, scheduled for July 11. Of course we, like everyone else, are monitoring the Coronavirus situation and will make a decision as to whether the meeting will take place on the scheduled date. We are already planning alternate dates if it becomes necessary and will provide news on the VBA website and in our emailed Updates to members.
The EAS Board of Directors is closely watching the Coronavirus situation and will likely decide if EAS 2020 will be cancelled sometime in April. Currently the University of Maine Orono where the 2020 EAS conference is planned, is closed. Registration for EAS will not be opened until, and when, the Executive Board makes a decision.
In the event of a prolonged stay home order, the VBA will use teleconferencing, webinars and other online learning tools to assist members. In the meantime, members may use the VBA website forums in order to interact with other beekeepers and ask questions as we prepare for the upcoming season. (Login to the VBA website and find the Forums under the Members Only menu.)
Finally, Vermont Governor Phil Scott issued an Addendum to Executive Order 01-20 in response to COVID-19 directing Vermonters to stay home:
"To preserve the public health and safety, to ensure the healthcare delivery system is capable of serving all, and to help protect those at the highest risk and vulnerability, Vermonters are directed to stay at home or in their place of residence, leaving only for essential reasons." The complete order may be read here.
Section 6 of the order includes an agricultural exemption allowing beekeepers to tend to their apiaries.
State Coronavirus information may be viewed here or you may visit the Center for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) website.
The VBA website calendar will reflect updated events information as we receive it. Local clubs are asked to update their calendar listings as-needed.