Welcome to SEMBA

Southeastern Michigan Beekeepers Association

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SEMBA BeeKeeping School

As we welcome you to an exciting bee-centric journey, we do want to offer two notes of caution. First, take time to evaluate your reasons and goals. If you are hoping “to save the bees,” it may be more important to plant and encourage pollinator friendly farms and gardens, to join the movement to eradicate lethal pesticides, or to participate in citizen science projects that support endangered pollinators. If, however, you are fascinated by social insects, want to share a hobby with your children, are determined to have fresh honey from your backyard, want to try your hand at making mead, or feel that you can build a better beehive, then honey beekeeping is for you.

Second, only one in three Michigan honey bee hives will survive their first winter. Our classes promise you the joy of discovery, the pain of stings, as well as the sorrow of learning to cope with bee loss.

The board of SEMBA and the instructors at SEMBA Bee School invite you to hone both your vision and practice, as well as consider the role our eco-system plays in the life of the honey bee.

2021 Calendar year classes are currently being developed. The structure of the classes will be modified to accommodate COVID-19 guidelines to ensure student and staff safety. More info will be available soon. If you have any questions and/or are interested in attending beekeeping school next year, please send an email to sembabeeschool@gmail.com 

TO ATTEND CLASSES You must be a SEMBA member! if you are not already a member you can sign up at the time you sign up for the class.

2019 Bee school yard at Tollgate Farm

The Southeastern Michigan Beekeepers Association (SEMBA) has provided support to those interested in bees and beekeeping for over eighty years.

The goals of our class are:

  1. to develop students’ understanding of disease and pests, especially varroa mites;
  2. to better understand the roles of nutrition and healthy habitats for managing colonies throughout the seasons;
  3. to build student confidence and the local beekeeping community through hands-on training and mentorship; and
  4. to cultivate sustainable beekeeping practices that support the health of all pollinators.

We also offer a more advanced course for those with at least two years of hands-on beekeeping experience.

We are reviewing locations in Detroit, Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb counties. 


Our affiliation with the Michigan State University Department of Entomology offers access to cutting-edge research, and our knowledgeable guest presenters bring passion to our comprehensive classes and to SEMBA club meetings. We promote hands-on mentorship, as well as participation in regional beekeeping conferences.


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