In addition to the hives, I do need some basic equipment. I had put in an order at Betterbee, and it came in today! Here is what I got:
- A smoker (its bigger than I pictured, maybe I should have gotten the “Lil’ Pro” instead of the “Pro”)
- A pair of Beekeeping gloves (they go up above my elbows)
- A hive tool (for prying, scraping, etc)
- A bee brush (for brushing bees off comb, top-bars, etc. – not sure if I needed this, but it was cheap)
- 2 entrance feeders (for feeding sugar syrup to help the hives get started – I will put them at the back of the hive)
I had tried to estimate the size of the feeders, and was a bit off. The catalog said they were for 3/8″ entrances, so I cut the slots in the back of the hive 3/8″ thick. It turns out they are 1/2″ thick, so I will need to widen the slots. They are also 5″ wide (I had guessed 4″) so I will have to lengthen the slots too. Oh well, I guess the hives aren’t really done after all.
For protective clothing, I got a zippered jacket with a zip-on veil. The veil unzips and flips over behind your back when not needed. I also got an additional veil that doesn’t require a hat. This will be for backup or visitors (or if its really hot and the bees are nice to me). Its foldable and can fit in a backpack (so I could possible use it coming straight from school before going home). My daughter took a liking to the extra veil, and has decided its hers.
I’m sure I will figure out other stuff I need after I start, but I think this should cover the basics.