Beekeeping Equipment Checklist

Here's a list of equipment you'll need to get started with beekeeping.

by Dani Yokhna
PHOTO: Luc Viatour /

To begin beekeeping with one Langstroth hive, you’ll need the following:

  • A veil, bee suit and gloves: Worn properly, protective clothing helps keep stings to a minimum.
  • Smoker: This implement produces a cool smoke that settles the bees by causing them to gorge on honey.
  • Hive tool: A steel tool used to open the hive, scrape wax/propolis and handle frames.
  • Hive stand: This improves air circulation by elevating the hive.
  • Bottom board: The bottom floor of the hive.
  • Two deep hive bodies: These boxes are used as brood and food chambers by the bees.
  • Ten frames with foundation per hive body: Each frame holds a sheet of beeswax or plastic foundation.
  • Secreting wax from specialized glands, the bees build hexagonal cells onto the frames. Many beekeepers use nine.
  • Shallow honey supers with frames: The bees store surplus honey in these boxes.
  • Queen excluder: A frame and grid that keeps the queen from entering the honey supers to lay eggs (not used by all beekeepers).
  • Outer cover: Protects hive from the elements.
  • Feeder: Provides bees with supplemental feed such as sugar syrup when stores are low.

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