Beekeeping Material Checklist
Currently it is winter time, although there is not much bee work to do. It is now the time for the beekeeper to prepare all his equipment for the new season.
Material preparation is a minor thing to do in the winter and I often postphone it to the beginning of the season.But you will notice if you prepare well in advance it will save you a lot of busy last minute nights of preparation.
I made a small list for myself to help me herinner on what is needed for the next beekeeping season. This list can be used by the more experienced beekeeper or for the beginner to set up basic beekeeping kit.
In this list I take into consideration normal hives which are used by the majority of the beekeepers.
I check for each hive if I have the following available:
When you first buy a hive please consider buying a whole hive,this can save quite some money.
- One – Screened bottom board
- Two – Brood boxes
- Two – Honey supers
- Twenty – brood super frames* (ten for each box)
- Twenty – honey super frames* (ten for each box)
- One – plastic or wooden feeder
- One – Inner cover
- One – Outer cover
- Multiple – Queen excluders’s
- Entrance reducer
- One – 5 or 6 Frame nuc for each hive – see aalstermethod.
* For each super or honey frame you should check if the old frame still suffices. Next you should check if wax comb can be re-used. As a rule of thumb: I try to renew 40 percent of the old frames with new foundations for the bees to build. Old (almost black) wax comb contain diseases and should be changed out over time.
Clothing and Tools
Below the minimum amount of clothing I have available. You should check if it is still in good condition. Last summer I had a small hole in my suit and the bees where happily using this to sting me in the face. This is a once in a lifetime mistake and please learn from it by regularly checking your gear. I always wear long pants including boots. When bees fall on the ground and they will use your legs to climb up. If they bees are angry they can sting you into the anckles which can swell really bad.
- One – Bee suit
- Set of (Leather) Gloves
- One – Hive tool
- One – Smoker
- smoker Fuel – I prefer Hemp Pellets
- Brush or geese wing.
- Metal wire crimper/ tensioner – too tension the wire of the old frames
If you want to collect pollen or propolis you can consider the following.
- Propolis trap
- Pollen trap
There are several methods of honey extraction, you should consider for yourself what suits you best. But below is what I use.
- Honey extractor – manual three frames
- Uncap tool (no heating knife)
- Uncapping tank
- Honey strain
- Honey Bottling Tank
- Bottles incl lids (always have small and larger sizes available)
Note: Hope this list provides any value to you, I included the amazon link to closely show you what I use. If you consider to buy something via amazon I receive a small commision which keeps this site up in the air. Please be aware the links are for information only, buying would be appreciated but I can not force you.
What is not mentioned here is pest control. Pest control is something I am still figuring out, so I am not able (now) to provide you with input.
Photo credits: T. Oosterveer