Equipment You Need for Beekeeping - Year 1
We advocate using a Langstroth Hive although there are other types of hives. This type of hive makes it easier to adhere to best practices in beekeeping. Some of the other types are a Skep, Warre and Topbar Hive.
It is also imperative that you have adequate forage for your bees and enough water to keep the plants in bloom. Further these must be blooms that they (not you) like - in enough quantity and diversity that the bees will be adquately nourished. There must be lots of blooms in each season: Spring, Summer and Fall (click here to go to Xerces Society's excellent plant list for your bioregion).
If you don't already have information about pesticides, fungucides, herbicides, and their effects, you will need to read up so that you can be proactive in advocating for your bees. If you have neighbors using pesticides it may be helpful to find out what they are using and what time of the day they use it.
You must have some sort of protective equipment that covers at least your face and head (this minimal approach is for the very hardy! We recommend a full bee suit with gloves), a hive tool, smoker, and a Langstroth Deep hive box with all its component frames, bottom board (preferably a screened bottom board with insert to close it up in winter), an inner cover, telescoping lid, a couple of bricks to keep the lid down, some strapping to secure it to the base and a base of some sort. We recommend using six cinder blocks so it is really up off the ground. Do not underestimate the need for strapping. It will keep you from worrying about your bees during high winds.
You are best off with two hives so that in case one fails, you may be able to rescue the failing hive with stores from the other (if doing so does not put the stronger hive at risk). Hence, the supplies (which reflect the needs for hives which are growing and maturing) would include the following:
8 (8 frame style) Langstroth boxes, two of which are “deeps” and 6 of which are “westerns”
16 “deep” frames
48 “western” style frames
2 exterior telescoping covers
2 or more inner covers
2 (8 frame style) bottom boards, preferably screened with plastic inserts and “removable doors”
at either end.
2 size adaptors if the bottom board is larger than the boxes.
2 feeder frames or feeders (more on this later)
12 concrete cinderblocks
6 bricks or something else that is heavy to keep lids secured
2 entrance reducers
Beekeeper protective suit (s)
Beekeeper style gloves
Smoker fuel (burlap and unprocessed cotton)
Long nosed lighter
Fire extinguisher (preferred)
8 doses of apiguard mitecide or appropriate doses of other mitecide (you may also need other supplies to cope with Small Hive Beetle if it is an issue in your area)
30 lbs drivert sugar
Quart jar fitted with #8 gauge screen
A white plate
Several commercial wasp traps or homemade wasp traps.
An extra swarm box
Text: First Lessons in Beekeeping by Keith Deplane
You need to have some sort of water feature available in the very near vicinity (15 to 20 feet away from the hives is preferred). You should most certainly also have access to a hose or buckets of water to prevent fire in the unlikely case that a spark should fly out of your smoker.
Beehives should be facing east, south east. Once they are placed, if you must move them they can only be moved two inches at a time or the bees will become disoriented. Alternatively, they can 2 miles away and kept at that location during the next generation of bees. Any less that that, they will return to their former site looking for their hive. The point here is that one must be sure of the placement site ahead of time.
Honeybees are a valuable part of our agricultural landscape and pollination supports our food network but the general public often does not know what to make of them. It’s advisable to make a sign indicating to the public that they must not poke at the bees or otherwise antagonize them, although generally, honeybees do not seek to harm humans any more than do spiders or flies. Finally, if you live in a city or town, there may be guidelines which you must follow and you should check with your local government about this.
Oregon and Northern California
Honey Producers and Bee Suppliers
Bee-Licious Honey: Portland, Oregon: www.bee-licioushoney.com or 503.867.4596
Deer Creek Apis: Selma, Oregon: www.deercreekapis.com
Diggin' Livin': Cave Junction, Oregon: www.digginlivinnaturalfoodsfarmdeli.com
Davitt Apiaries: Klamath Falls, Oregon: www.davitt.com
Franz Honeybees: Gold Hill, Oregon. https://www.facebook.com/franz-honeybees
Noah's Bees and Products: Grants Pass, Oregon: https://www.facebook.com/noahsbees
Chico Honey Company (www.chicohoneyco.com) // Olivarez Bees, (www.OHBEES.com) Orland, California - Queen Bees available year round : 877.865.0298
Simply Bee: Rogue Valley, Oregon: Honey@messagebox.biz
Siskiyou Bees: Jake Kenfield: Talent, Oregon: 541.890.4623
Wild Bee Honey Farm / The Oregon Bee Store, Eagle Point, Oregon: www.oregonbeestore.com
Find Local Oregon Beekeepers' Associations- Click Here
Oregon Honey Festival © 2013
National Management Survey Data from the Bee Informed Partnership
Below: Bill Catherall, Past President of Portland Urban Beekeepers Association and Dr. Dewey Caron show you How To Do A Mite Count using the Sugar Roll Method:
Cascade Girl || Oregon Honey Festival
Research Informed, Passion Driven || Connecting People with Bee Culture & Science
What to plant for Bees
Check THIS LIST from the Xerces Society to plant for your area/season
-Remember to use native plants whenever possible!
-Avoid neonicotinoid treated plants!