Careers rarely develop the way we plan them. Our career path often takes many twists and turns, with particular events, choices and people influencing our direction.

We asked Liam Dowling from St. Michael's House to give some advice for people considering this job:


Liam Dowling

Clinical Nurse Manager 2

St. Michael's House

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  Liam Dowling

Do your homework, ask about it - there is lots of infomation out there.  You need to be person centred, social, not afraid to mix and to have an understanding of disability or at least be prepared to learn about it. 

People with an Intellectual Disability  ARE NOT SICK , but they can get sick like everyone else and sometimes I feel people outside don't fully understand this. They don't just need Gods help. They need the help of qualified people that want to understand them so that their needs are met and they have chance to enjoy their life as much as is possible.


Not surprisingly, some aspect of the natural sciences will run through the Naturalists interests - from ecological awareness to nutrition and health. People with an interest in horticulture, land usage and farming (including fish) are Naturalists.

Some Naturalists focus on animals rather than plants, and may enjoy working with, training, caring for, or simply herding them. Other Naturalists will prefer working with the end result of nature's produce - the food produced from plants and animals. Naturalists like solving problems with solutions that show some sensitivity to the environmental impact of what they do. They like to see practical results, and prefer action to talking and discussing.
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Occupation Details

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Apiarist / Commercial Bee Keeper

Job Zone

Most occupations in this zone require job specific training (vocational training) related to the occupation (NFQ Levels 5 and 6 or higher), related on-the-job experience, or a relevant professional award.

Related Experience
Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, electricians typically complete four years of training in order to perform the job.

Job Training
Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers. A recognised apprenticeship program may be associated with these occupations.

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These occupations usually involve using communication and organisational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include restaurant managers, electricians, agricultural technicians, legal secretaries, hairdressers, and web developers.

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At a Glance... header image

Works on a commercial honey farm looking after hives of bees where honey is made, collected and then retailed

The Work header image

Apiarists maintain bee hives, collect the honey they produce and retail it. The work includes a variety of seasonal jobs. For example they make sure that the bees have access to trees and plants that produce sufficient nectar for the production of honey.  
They ensure that the bees are kept free from disease and parasites. They create new hives when the bees swarm and take care to prevent the bees swarming away from the farm.  
They feed the bees with a sugar solution during the winter and they regularly inspect the hives and remove the honeycombs. It is important that they adhere strictly to the rules and regulations regarding hygiene and health and safety.  
Duties also include extracting the honey from honeycombs, bottling it and labeling it. They may also produce related products such as confectionary, cosmetics, candles and royal jelly.


Personal Qualitiesheader image

You must be fit, strong and willing to work outdoors in all types of weather. You will have to be prepared to work early in the morning or late at night to make sure that the bees do not swarm away from the farm.

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Contactsheader image


Organisation: Federation of Irish Beekeepers' Associations
  Address: Ballinakill, Enfield, Co. Meath
  Tel: (046) 954 1433
  Email: Click here
  Url Click here


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Career Guidance

This occupation is popular with people who have the following Career Interests...

...and for people who like working in the following Career Sectors:

Agriculture, Horticulture, Forestry & Food

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Further Ed & PLC Course Suggestions
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Courses found: 20