I have an opportunity to hear Keith Delaplane speak in mid-March over a 3 day period. I don't believe he is speaking about package installation though. Over the years, the big changes have been in varroa, small hive beetle and Africanized Honey Bees. Unless you area is prone to AHB, that's probably not a big concern.
I hope you get to attend, I would be interested in hearing him speak myself, if you go I'd love to hear some of the highlights!
Green bee, here is a little follow up on the Dr. Keith Delaplane lectures. I will try not to come across as a star struck school girl, but he is an outstanding
speaker. This professor is so knowledgeable. Anyone hearing a lecture, taking a class, or reading his books will be a better beekeeper.
Dr. Delaplane spoke to two different groups. We got to hear him at the state wide beekeeping association meeting and then at a local beekeeping beginners class. He spoke on the following topics "Honey Bee superorganism and why it matters", "Integrating Queen Multiple Mating with Traditional Bee Breeding. Queen Polyandry", "Emergent Properties in the Honey Bee Colony", "Biology of Individuals", "Biology of the Colony", and "Honey Bee diseases and pests".
These textbook sounding titles were really easy to understand lectures backed up by extensive research. (His own research as well as giving credit to Tom Seeley, Marla Spivak, Mark Winston and so forth)
Delaplane has some interesting research data on combating varroa mite by spacing hives an appropriate distance. His thoughts on queen mating were fascinating and left you with the impression that we will be doing a lot more artificial insemination of queens some day. He also leans toward the hygienic queens.
I could elaborate, but I will say that if he is speaking in your area, make an effort to see him.
Again, trying not to act like an infatuated school girl, I was asked to transport Dr. Delaplane from his hotel, which was 5 minutes from my house, to the beginning beekeepers class!!! 30 minutes with the keynote speaker!! We chatted about everything light and casual. Interesting man.
At the close of the beginners class, we had the traditional door prize drawing at the end of the day. I won a copy of his First Lesson In Beekeeping
which I had him autograph. He commented it was 10 years old and about time to revise it with a second edition.