May 20, 2009
PHOTO: Luc Viatour / www.Lucnix.be
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.