Finding the Right Beekeeping Equipment
Article by Mark Daymond
One of the initial concerns for beginner beekeeper is what beekeeping equipment do you need. What you want to avoid is buying lots of equipment and then finding that you do not need much of it. Likewise, you do not want to be in a position of making a start on your new hobby and then finding that you are missing something vital.
One obvious piece of “equipment” you need is your honeybees – if you can describe bees as being as such. You should source your bees from a reputable supplier (who will supply them in a nucleus hive) or from another beekeeper. It may be worth contacting your local beekeeping association (if there is one) to see if there any local beekeepers who are able to supply you with a starter colony. As a new beekeeper, it is really not recommended that you try and trap a swarm of honeybees.
Your honeybees will require a home, and of course you will need a bee hive. But what sort of hive? The most widely used is the Langstroth hive, although there others of a similar design available. Whatever design you choose, it is recommended that you choose one and stick to it. This way, if you want to expand you beekeeping venture and increase the number of hives you have, you have the flexibility to interchange parts between your hives. Whatever hive you choose it should incorporate the following:
- Crown board
- Up to three or more (honey) super boxes
- Queen excluder
- Brood box
In order to protect yourself from your honeybees and so that you feel more confident and comfortable dealing with them you will need a bee suit and veil. It is better to avoid the older type with netting all around the back as the folds in the netting can allow the occasional bee through. The newer bee suits have a fabric back to the veil.
Here is a list of some of the other equipment you will need:
- Suitable boots
- Bee gloves
- Hive tool
- Queen marking cage and pen
- A feeder to feed your bee’s sugar syrup
- A Porter bee escape
- A good beekeeping reference guide
Your local beekeeping association may able to advise on the best places to source your beekeeping equipment.
About the Author
As you can see the amount of beekeeping equipment you need is not huge, and after your initial outlay your costs are really quite small.
Beekeeping is a fascinating hobby which allows you to be a part of nature’s miracle of producing honey. Providing you are armed with the right information, anyone can take up beekeeping.