Like all things in keeping honey bees when you ask 2 beekeepers what you will need in your first year you will get 3 answers. This blog post will lay what we at HarBee use in our hives and also try to give time to equipment and different sized equipment that we don’t use but really have nothing against.
I is always suggested that a person manages a minim of two hives at a location because when keeping two hives you are able to take resources that would other wise swarm and give them to a colony that is not as strong. That said the post below will list what you need per hive.
We do have the capacity to sell all list equipment all you have to do is email Pat at Pat@harbee.net with the subject “Equipment order” other wise the link that are provide will bring you to a site where HarBee is given a commission. In no way does or did that commission effect want we choose to suggest to new beekeepers
Bottom Board, Inner and outer cover.
The Bottom Board is plan and simple the basement to the hive. There is a small rim around the edge that allows bees to get all all frames after coming into the hive from foraging.
We would recommend a solid bottom board because the screened bottom board only become popular with the idea that it was a good way to control Varroa and it don’t little to nothing at all to do so. Also, when treating with formic acid, Oxalic acid and other mite treatment you will need to sell that bottom anyway so for easy of use. Get a solid Bottom. Here is a link.
Inner and outer cover. The inner cover prevent the crushing of bees want putting the outer cover on. At HarBee we use inner and outer cover, but sometimes we use a monitory cover that have a raised lid. The raised lid cover is less expensive but would suggest a new beekeeper use the inner and outer classic. There is no link, I couldn’t from an option that had a reasonable price.
There are two different size that we will talk about the Deep and the Medium box. The the photo the green and orange boxes are Deeps while the Blue and purple are mediums. You can see that 2 deeps = 3 mediums.
We keep 2 deep boxes and 3 mediums on hand for each hive. and normally only have 2 deep boxes as a brood chamber and use mediums as honey supers.
A super is where honey is kept that will be harvested.
Brood boxes is where the queen is laying and honey is not harvested. For more info on that watch this video. HERE
There are two types of feeders. Top feeders are great being the hold more sugar and division board are smaller (so more trips to the bee yard) but are less expensive. NEVER use a bondman feeder when feeding sugar.
Hive tool. A hive tool is really just a crow bar for the bee hive. Get one of both (L type and J hook) and figure out which one you like the most. For me, it is the one that I can find. Link to J hook and Link to standard type and Link to Both
Queen Excluder. The hottest topic in beeping. Some will fight over the idea that a queen excluder leads to less honey production. My option is that when used currently you will get more. Once I make a video explaining I will link here. A queen excluder prevents the queen for laying eggs in your honey supers and I use them on all hives. Here is a link
Smoker, a smoker is used to dilute the alarm pheromones that are put out by the bees when working the hives. Is a like to one that is great if you have less than 10 hives. Link here