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5 ,8 ,10 frame, and long Lang
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Re: Protection!!

Do find out how you respond to being stung - yes it will happen. Good to know if you're one to swell up big time before you're in a situation where you get multiple stings.

But it HURTS! Many of my mentors (very experienced keepers) urged me to "get used to it"..."handle the frames with bare hands so you don't squish bees"..."just get a veil, suits cost too much"...."stings are good for you".

I think they love pain. Perhaps after going through hives, they like to slam fingers in car doors. Not for me.
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Actually I do enjoy getting Stung, the fire slowly going up you arm or leg, the feel of fire in the vein. I can hardly wait till spring sometimes.
The venom really is good for some ailments, there is a Whole group of Apitherapy aficionados. Must be like skydiving, jumping out of a per factually good plane, feeling good....
GG
 

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All good advice up above. Spend a year learning all you can before you get bees. Read, read, read, join a club, work with another beek. There is some good stuff on YouTube but you need some background to separate the wheat from the chaff. Ask questions. Two beekeepers will give you 3 or 4 different answers.
Do some self searching:
Why do I want bees?
Where do I want to go with this?
Do I have the time and commitment to look after them?
You won't go far wrong if you read this first: https://honeybeehealthcoalition.org/hivehealthbmps/
Don't worry about treatment free beekeeping. Concentrate on keeping your bees healthy and getting them through the Winter.
Make sure you have a nice chair in your bee yard. There is no place on Earth quite as satisfying to the soul as sitting in a bee loud glade and thinking about bees.
 

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Take a good, thorough online course. I used to give in-person classes and students just didn't remember what to do months later when they actually had bees. In person classes are great for trying out being around bees and see if you like, but when you need to really LEARN, go online. There are a few online courses available. Sign up for one that doesn't limit you to how long you can access it so you can watch BEFORE you have bees and again when you actually have your bees.

The Penn State course was ok but lacking in mite treatment info and overwintering specifics.
Beekeeping Made Simple's course was really thorough and they offer mentorship. www.beekeepingmadesimple.com
I haven't tried any others yet.

Books are nice, but I find it hard to understand exactly what you're supposed to do just by reading and seeing a black and white photo.
 
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