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Thread: Bee Suits

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
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    Gainesville, FL, USA
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    Default Bee Suits

    Does anyone have any experience / opinions on children's bee suits? My son will be 7 this fall, and we just got our first hive of bees. The man who gave us the bees strongly recommended a bee suit for him. Right now he is just wearing blue jeans and a long sleeved shirt with veil and gloves. Do the suits really make that much of a difference in protecting from stings? Which is the best type to get? I've also noticed that they come in 4-6 or 10-12. What about the in between sizes? What size would I be better off getting? He wears around a size 7.
    Thanks for any input!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Loganville, GA
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    2,172

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    Can't help with sizes.

    Getting a suit because some else says you need to makes no sense. It depends on your bees. If he's not getting stung now, why make him more uncomfortable with the extra clothing? If you expect to be raising bees that are more defensive, then go ahead with it.

    I have bees I can work in shorts and t-shirts. I also have bees I wouldn't dare open up without a suit and I still get stung. Maybe I'm just crazy that way keeping them? But I really don't care. I do well to keep them in seperate yards and don't mix them up. I love them all and see good and bad in both.

    It's up to you what kind of bees your going to keep. Dress accordingly.
    "Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts." Winston Churchill

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Barnesville Pa.
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    74

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    Bieng new, I feel alot better in a full suit.Maybe when I get more comfortable Ill go down to a veil and gloves.I bought a suit with a zippered veil from Dadant.I think it was like 65 bucks not including shipping.It sucks to have extra clothes in the summer,but I feel alot more confident in it.I would definately put a kid in a full suit.But,thats me......

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Paso Robles, California
    Posts
    155

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    I also have a son who is 7 and loves to help me with the girls. I bought him the full suit from dadant, size 10 I bilieve...they grow like weeds so I figure he will grow into it. It has elastic wrists and ankles so it keeps it up and out of his way. It helps him to know he doesn't have anything to worry about and can be confident and LEARNING instead of worrying about the bees 'getting' him. I also wear a full jacket with hood. My girls are very docile but it gives me the confidence, as a beginner, to do what I need to do without worry of getting stung. One less thing to worry about. in my opinion its like a seatbelt or a bulletproof vest...it doesn't get in your way, its not that difficult to put on...so why wouldn't you wear it? Of course, ymmv...just my $.02
    you can check out my blog for pics of the little man in his suit...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Weymouth, Massachusetts
    Posts
    220

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    My son is 6 and he wears the wee bee suit from Brushy Mountain in the 8-10 size, it looked huge when I took it out of the box but once it was on it fit good.
    It wasn't huge on him but its baggy which is good anyway, its suppose to fit loosely and he will get a couple of years out of it.
    As far as making a difference, the suits obviously offer protection from stings much better than with long sleeve shirts otherwise there would be no market for them.
    My son helped me catch a swarm last week and has worked the bees many times and the suit protects him from stings.
    He knows that and it helps him to feel more confident around the bees.
    Regular clothing does not offer any guaranteed protection from stings.
    I worked bees in my ultra breeze jacket the other day and there were stingers stuck in the fabric when I was done, stingers that did not go into me because I was wearing a protective jacket.
    Bees can and will sting right through clothing and it will only take one or two stings for it to take the fun out of it for him and make him afraid of bees.
    I saw someone get stung about 30 times last week in minutes when he opened a hive that just poured out angry, I was just standing there and they were all over me, I was definitely glad to be wearing protective gear.
    I couldn't believe all the stingers stuck in the jacket when I took it off.
    I wouldn't have wanted my kid to have been standing there without any gear on thats for sure.
    You never know how your bees are going to react, even gentle bees will have an off day especially if there is a dearth.
    Most adults at least have protective gear even if they don't always wear it.
    I don't know about you but so far the minute people hear that my son works the bees they always immediately ask me if he has a suit to wear.
    I would not want to tell them that he did not.
    He likes to go to the beekeepers field days that the club puts on and I would not want to bring him without protective gear and I highly doubt they would let him near the hives without it anyway.
    To me protective gear is not an option when it comes to kids.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    North Bend, WA
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    504

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    I got my 9 year old the children's jacket veil combo from dadant.

    https://www.dadant.com/catalog/produ...oducts_id=1072

    Since it's not a full suit, size isn't as crucial and it'll last a few more years. So far, it's been a really good choice.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Gainesville, FL, USA
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    78

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    Thank you everyone for the great advice! I think I will definitely buy him a suit, just for the extra security. I would hate for him to have his enthusiasm quashed by being stung

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Plano, TX
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    My daughter just turned 11, but is pretty small. She wears about 7-8 in girls. I got her the full Dadant beesuit + zip-on veil in size 10-12. It's kind of big and baggy on her, but I figured she's growing. Also the bee suit gives her the extra confidence with the bees. After getting totally frustrated w/ my Alexander veil -- it kept slipping and then I couldn't move my glasses back up my nose -- I stopped using it. So far I've been able to work my bees in light cotton pants (like pajama pants) and a T-shirt. That has given my daughter extra confidence. She likes working the smoker, which also makes her feel more in control.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Plano, TX
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    Default Re: Bee Suits

    As to being stung -- the only time my daughter was stung was when she was attempting to rescue barehanded a bee that had flown into our pool. She understands why she was stung, and it hasn't seemed to sour her on bees completely, although she did take a couple of days off afterward.

  10. #10
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    May 2009
    Location
    Plano, TX
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    18

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    Last post -- I promise. She also likes the "cool factor" of having a beesuit and being an "official" beekeeper.

  11. #11
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    May 2009
    Location
    Gainesville, FL, USA
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    78

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    LOL, I think the cool factor is important! My son also loves working the smoker. After his first time opening a hive, when I asked him what he liked best about beekeeping, he said "the smoker!" On the way home from the beekeeper's place, he said "I think I want to be a beekeeper FOREVER mom!" Too cute

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Weymouth, Massachusetts
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    220

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    They do like the gear that goes with beekeeping, it definitely has a cool factor at that age.
    My son is 6 and his teacher contacted me and asked if I could bring in his suit and some equipment for him to do a presenation to his first grade class.
    My son is normally very quiet and she says he does not volunteer much information to her but she noticed that whenever he approached her to start a conversation it was always about his bees.
    He caught a swarm with us last week and she told me that he barreled into class on the following school day to tell her about it, so she was impressed by how much it has helped his confidence and how much he knew about the bees in general.
    So we showed up the other day with his gear and he put on his suit and demonstrated his favorite piece of equipment, the smoker
    He was able to answer any question about bees that was asked of him which surprised even me since you never know how much kids are going to take in when you teach them.
    He did take a beekeeping course at our local club and he does work the 10 hives that we have with me but I wasn't sure how much of the details he was absorbing.
    I think its great to get the kids involved.
    His class thought it was the coolest thing ever and now they all want to be beekeepers too.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    macclenny florida
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    104

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    Quote Originally Posted by kaisfate View Post
    like a seatbelt or a bulletproof vest...it doesn't get in your way,...
    have ya put on a bullet proof vest lately yes they get in the way .BUT!!!!!!!

  14. #14
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Oak Hill NY USA
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    1

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    I am looking for a used 10-12 bee suit for my daughter Thank you in advance

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Newbury, MA
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    5

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    I wear a tyvek suit when the bees are ornery. I saw one for kids but in Australia. Here is the site selling a tyvek suite for kids with a hood. They must be available somewhere in the states......our economy is global right?

    http://www.industrysearch.com.au/Pro...Coverall-13876

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Killington,VT
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    143

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    Hi: I found this site for tyvek suits in general. I wear one when I have to really work through a hive. So far it has worked well. I wear a booted and hooded version I was given with my veil and gloves. No stings with it yet - two years of sporatic use. Paul

    http://www.disposable-garments.com/p...nt__p3272.html

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Edmonds, Washington, USA
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: Bee Suits

    I'm looking to buy a used kid's bee suit for my son. He is almost 3 (but tall) and loves to stand in front of the hive and watch the bees. Any suggestions?

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