So let’s get back to my things to do list.
EQUIPMENT is my first job to tackle. What and how much do I need, because I don't know if I will like this hobby, or maybe I am going thru a mid life crises like my son tells me. So the first place I stopped was Google search and put in Beekeeping equipment. There are so many beekeeping equipment sites on the internet that I did not know where to start. So I found the closets one's to my home and ordered Catalogs from each. But I also looked on their sites. What do I need? I back tracked back to the forums with more questions. By this time I figured everyone would be sick and tired of my Rookie questions, but to my surprise they still were willing to help. So I started.
What type of equipment?
Large, medium, or small supers
Ten or eight frame. Or should I take a 10 frame and make it a nine frame with spacers, or maybe make a ten frame an eight frame?
What type wood? Pine, Cyprus etc….
Box or rabbit cut?
Natural or plastic foundation?
Telescope, Flat, Migratory, or reversible cover?
Solid, or screened, or screened beetle trap, or double screen bottom boards?
Slatted rack or not?
Inner cover or not?
Queen Excluder, wood, plastic, or metal? Or just don’t use one.
Feeders ? Boardman, plastic feeder pail, plastic entrance one piece, plastic hive top feeder? So to say the least everyone uses some thing different and each climate location needs somethings different .But I did have a lot to look at.
I was back to square one until some beekeepers told me to.
Before you do anything read Beekeepers for Dummies. Then ask yourself why do I want to take care of bees? Make a million $$$, save the environment; help out in your garden become a commercial Beekeeper etc…? Answering this question will help you decide what equipment to start out with.
Most all beekeepers I talked to said to start out with at least two Hives so you can see the differences and tell if something is going wrong. Find a local Beekeeping Association http://www.midstatebeekeepers.com/index.html . Great group I have gone to two meeting and have learned a lot. I have also signed up to take the Beginers Beekeeping Course.
I ordered the book and read it and began my wish list which has changed several times after talking to more beekeepers and getting there input.
This is my first equipment order.
I will start with two Hives both having.
No Inner covers
After Reading several comments about not getting an inner cover I decided it would be best to get that or a jack hamer. So I ordered two inner covers.
This is why. When you us a top cover, you will also need a inner cover, to help with condensation and for ease of getting the outer cover off your hive, using just a top cover the bees will fill the edges with Propolis which is a kind of bee cement and because of the shape of the outer cover you will not be able to get your hive tool under the cover to pry it off.
If you do not want to use a inner cover you can order a Migratory, Flat, or a reversible cover. These covers are very similar in construction with some slight variation. Check out Rossmans Apiaries at http://www.gabees.com/home.htm they have the three covers I have mentioned.
All medium eight frame supers. Supers made of Cyprus.
I will use natural Bees wax foundation small cell.
I will use a slatted Rack from Better Bee http://www.betterbee.com they offer the one that is vertical that goes in the same direction as the frames and a screened bottom board with an extension kit for small hive beetles.
An entrance reducer and Hive top feeder, one hive tool a brush, professional 10in smoker funnel top. I was told not to get a round top it always comes off. A Bee jacket and Vail combination from http://www.honeymoonapiaries.com it is called the Ultra Breeze a little pricey but I think it will be worth it in the South Carolina heat. So everything is ordered next time I will talk about putting the equipment together and painting.