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  1. #81
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    5,996

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    What he said was that to not wear a veil takes complete ignorance.

    He may or may not be right for some people, but in my opinion it is not always the case.

    But hey, no biggy. People do what they want.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  2. #82
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Utica, NY
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    9,502

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    I know what he said and I think I know who he was saying it to. This is beekeeping, there are exceptions to every rule. Maybe I am going out on a limb here but I know it wasn't you or Mark.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  3. #83
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    27,123

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    Old timer think about people who reads these forums. I don't believe Michael's comment pertains to people who have years and years of experience with thousands of hives. I think he was fore warning naive beginners like myself who have never had a problem with a hive thinking it is always going to be that way. I have opened my hives without protection but what if Michael is right and ten thousand bees come at me. There is no way you can get the veil on fast enough to do any good. OK so maybe it is only 30 bees. You could be a hurting pup with 30 stings at once.
    A. He made a blanket statement w/out any qualifications.
    B. Unless you have some variety of bees unlike anyone else in NY you wouldn't have 10,000 bees fly up out of a hive at you. Even if you picked up your hive and dropped it. Have you ever seen 10,000 bees in the air at once?
    C. I have met you and you are perfectly capable, barring a suddenly broken leg, of getting away from your bees by going inside of your house from where your bhive is w/out suffering hundreds of stings.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  4. #84
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by Acebird View Post
    I know what he said and I think I know who he was saying it to. This is beekeeping, there are exceptions to every rule. Maybe I am going out on a limb here but I know it wasn't you or Mark.
    When he says anyone who does something he is talking about all anyones who do it. How can one interperate what he wrote any other way?
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  5. #85
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    Mar 2011
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    Utica, NY
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    9,502

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    A. He made a blanket statement w/out any qualifications.
    So let's crucify him. Get out the nails and wooden cross. I've done it countless times. When you compose a thought you have a certain audience in your head. It may exclude a group of people that are the real audience and low and behold you throw some mud, but not intentionally.

    I live in an area where bees don't go through feast and famine. Lucky me because I can get away with things that people would consider crazy. Am I right?

    The bottom line here is if you have no experience then you should darn well wear protection. If you have all the experience in the world they why should anybody tell you anything? The odds are they aren't even if what they wrote includes you.
    Brian Cardinal
    Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping

  6. #86
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Livingston County, NY
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    527

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    I worked 10 hives today in one of my yards. I wanted to check on them before we get 2.5 days of rain. I was wearing shorts, tee shirt, & a veil. most every hive was calm, queenright & didn't mind me at all supering & moving on.....then I opened a hive one deep, one honey super. lots of bees on porch....not much honey in medium top super....okay, what's up? pulled honey super....honeybound, no brood....started thinking, maybe I should have paid closer attention to the sounds when I opened the hive, nice little roar. One sting on bare leg, scraped & close w/ a little smoke & move on. rubbed some plantain (pigs ear) on the sting, no pain no swelling. rest of hives were calm & no more stings.

    I have only been keeping bees since 09. being mentored & paying very close attention to what & when the more advance keepers wear has helped me go from 200 stings in a year to a lot less.

    I bought some texas queens this year, & put them in my yard @ home. not a good idea. slightest bump with hive tool has 15-20 bees right in my face. I wear jacket & gloves every time. if these girls aren't GREAT honey producers they're gone!
    Best advice I've heard is learn from your mistakes. some days you get the eagle, some days the eagle gets you. many hives, keep notes & listen to their attitude when cracking the top. if you can't handle stings wear what you need. I am thankful that my working bees is becoming less & less a pain...so to speak.

    btw Mark, I was helping my mentor a cpl years ago, 12 colonies stacked HIGH, blowing bees out & stealing their goods. All of 100,000 bees in the air. got one in my veil. started heading away taking my veil off & my pal Stuff is yelling "don't take your veil off!!" I'm yelling "I have to" "no no no don't!! too late off goes the veil 15-20 stings right on the mellon, dizzy for a little while & back to work.

    Post # 70 Good word Beeman!
    Last edited by lakebilly; 06-27-2013 at 08:08 PM.
    Rmns 1:16/Prv.3:5,6/ Beegan BK May 09/ Zone 5b
    I have NOT failed. I have only found many many ways that do not work!

  7. #87
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    Jul 2008
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    OKC, OK USA
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    2,869

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    This will never be resolved. To the OP.....if you want to know how, spend many years with your bees, loving them, caring for them, and learning their behavior until you reach the point where you are comfortable and calm among them. If you reach a point where you can comfortably and safely work your bees without protection you will know it. It won't be a daring thing nor have anything to do with ego (as some have said) it will just make sense....and if not enjoy keeping your bees with protection.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  8. #88
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Location
    Madisonville,TN
    Posts
    197

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Whew! This is the last time I stay up late watching bee videos on you tube and posting on a bee forum! Thank you for everyone who posted, I have read every reply. I hope no one is mad at each other over the difference of opinions expressed here. The way I see it, be you a hobbyist, sideliner, or commercial guy, we all share a love for this amazing insect, just having something in common like that with other people around the world is a rare thing these days.

  9. #89
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
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    46,142

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    >Kinda wondering why your experience is that things can suddenly go so bad.

    Let's see:

    1) you open that hive that was perfectly nice yesterday, but they are decidedly NOT today for no apparent reason. One second it seems like things are normal and the next, hundreds of bees come out after you
    2) some Texas bees swarm in the middle of a drought and what were very nice bees last week, come pouring out of the hives by the 10s of thousands hitting you in the face and blocking your vision today
    3) you step in a hole that is hiding in the grass, while holding a ten frame deep full of bees and the box hits the ground and breaks into pieces and ten thousand bees hit the air in less than a second, and most of them are very unhappy

    Things can change very rapidly.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #90
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    Nov 2009
    Location
    Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
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    1,974

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    I agree with Mike here.

    A guy can have a ton of experience and really reads his bees well. So when he drops that box, he may well "read" he's about to get his butt hammered, but doesn't still doesn't have enough time to do much about it before he takes the stings...

  11. #91
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Worcester County, Massachusetts
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    3,632

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Bush View Post
    Things can change very rapidly.
    Sure they can. ...but I can't help think of the beginning of "Tunnel in the Sky" (a Heinlen boys/scifi/survival novel...one that Michael and I have discussed together before). The lesson of going out for survival drill without any gear that will make you feel "cocky" is a good one. When you open a hive without gloves, without a veil, etc, you have to approach things differently. You will move slower (or your lack of doing so will be "corrected"). You will be gentle pulling frames...you will act different.
    I had a friend who was trying to get into beekeeping with his 15 year old son...he complained to me that his son was too rough with the bees, banging frames around...I told him to take away his son's gloves.
    You should do what you need to do in order to feel safe.
    If I'm opening hives for an audience that generally isn't wearing protection, I should not open the hives unless I'm willing to do so without protection. I tell people that they might get stung...but I can't promise

    There are few things that can happen to you that (generally) are not harmful long term and cause as much immediate pain as a bee sting. Some of the lessons the bees have for us are taught by stinging. You can't learn those lessons if you are wrapped up like a corn dog

    deknow
    The irony is free. It's the sarcasm you are paying for....ironically.
    -Felicity Jones in "Chalet Girl"

  12. #92
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Location
    Ontario
    Posts
    55

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    First year beek here. The guy who I bought my bees off inspired alot of confidence in me not wearing any PPE (a cigarette in your mouth helps). Anyway I inspect my bees probably more then I should (2-3 times a week, im learning right?). I have worn PPE only once when I was fixing up some foundationless and tying it in, and realistically I probably didnt even need it then. Now heres the kicker, im 2.5 stories high on six colonies, im in there 2-3 times a week, and I have NEVER been stung by my bees. The closest I came is I was showing a friend after work, and they were all in for the night, I had one guard be fly up at me.

    So lessons learned, if I wouldnt want to be outside its probably not a good time. At night, not a good time. Move slow, be gentle, and dont be afraid.

    That said I have been stung by multiple wasps, yellow jackets, and even a bumblebee.

  13. #93
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    Dec 2005
    Location
    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    How do some guys walk across wide open spaces on a wire w/out a net or safety harness?

    W/ confidence and faith and very carefully, being willing to accept what happens and then deal w/ it.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  14. #94
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    May 2013
    Location
    Tineo, Asturias, SPAIN
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    184

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    I live in northern Spain and the local bees here have the reputation of being fairly aggressive. That said, I hear many old timers say they never use protection. After reading a lot on the subject here I decided to go without gloves at first. Now I go without any gear if the weather is good and the bees seem calm when I approach the hive. I usually get stung once or twice, sometimes not at all. As several have already said, if I judge wrong whether it is a good day, or I bang something, they correct me quickly.

    I am not a cocky nor do I think I know it all, I just am hypersensitive to heat, I sweat in 60 degree weather if I am in a suit/veil and I have never been able to see eggs with a veil on - without it, I look over the top of my glasses (I am nearsighted) and I can see the eggs plain as day.

    It also helps that I have a high tolerance to stings. I don't really feel any pain from the sting and I have mild itching the next day, sometimes not even that. I was once stung a half dozen times on the face and didn't realize it was more than one sting until I saw the stingers in the mirror when I got home.

  15. #95
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
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    3,594

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    How do some guys walk across wide open spaces on a wire w/out a net or safety harness?

    Confidence doesn't guarantee that one possesses the ability / talent to complete a task. There's a lot of crazy YouTube videos of confident people failing.
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  16. #96
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    Dec 2005
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    Brasher Falls, NY, USA
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    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by BeeCurious View Post
    Confidence doesn't guarantee that one possesses the ability / talent to complete a task. There's a lot of crazy YouTube videos of confident people failing.
    Granted. No guarantee of anything accompanies anything I have written in Reply to Posts on this Thread. Or any other Thread. Unless a guarantee was stated.
    Mark Berninghausen #youmatter

  17. #97
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    Aug 2007
    Location
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA
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    3,594

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by sqkcrk View Post
    Granted. No guarantee of anything accompanies anything I have written in Reply to Posts on this Thread. Or any other Thread. Unless a guarantee was stated.
    A very confident reply...
    BeeCurious
    Trying to think inside the box...

  18. #98
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    Jul 2010
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    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
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    5,996

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Confidence born of knowledge will help achieve the desired result.

    The other kind of confidence is born of ignorance, or maybe a little alcohol, and ends up on funny you tube videos.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  19. #99
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    May 2013
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    Tineo, Asturias, SPAIN
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    184

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by BeeCurious View Post
    There's a lot of crazy YouTube videos of confident people failing.
    And the world would be a more boring place without them. Lol.

  20. #100
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Upperco, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    69

    Default Re: How do some guys go without any kind of protective gear what so ever?

    I learned a valuable lesson the other day, actually a couple lessons.

    1) When opening a hive to inspect the state of honey supers, and I suspect they have gone queenless, always wear my suit & gloves.

    2) When I feel the need to wear a bee suit, always make sure to fully zip the veil/hat secure. Do not be silly and leave the jacket half unzipped and the veil completely unzipped.

    3) Just because I have all that stuff on, do not be in a hurry and get rough with my handling technique.

    4) In case I fail to take these steps, have someone suited up with a hose to squirt the bees off me.

    7 stings to my head, and embarrassed since it happened in front of my wife, I find that benedryl and advil are no solution to being stupid . I think I have become numb to hive conditions and my handling style since wearing all the stuff. I will continue to wear the stuff, but I really need to slow down and work'm as if I was naked. You'll be happy to note that the swelling is down enough that I can get my helmet on without pain and will be touring the Smokys next week!

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