A highly successful on-the-job training programme for beekeeping, a key component of the HIDA funded Integrated Agriculture project was conducted on April 26th, 27th and 28th, 2014 in and around Buttala, in Moneragala district. In the words of our technical advisor cum trainer the renowned Dr. R.W.K, Punchihewa Senior Lecturer in Agricultural Biology in the University of Ruhuna “the Buttala beekeeping programme is success story”
Key components of the programme are environment conservation and income generation with the participation of mainly women. In the project a group of “culturally honey gatherers are being gradually transformed into seasoned beekeepers”. Buttala was selected as a productive beekeeping area. Here there is the need to conserve the invaluable genetic stock of honey bees in the forest and utilize them in our programme to benefit the people.
The following figuredprominently in the training programme – demonstration of multiplication of colonies, seasonal colony management,capturing wild colonies thereby proliferating available resources, methods of proper honey extraction. In the programme the services of trained “Lead Beekeepers” were extensively used. All the training was done in the homegardens of the selected beekeepers.