Every beginning beekeeper is faced with this question: Should I wear a bee suit when I work my bees?
Beekeeper Suits Can be Very Comforting
I would recommend that you never work bees without wearing a bee veil, but gloves and suit are optional – even at the ritziest bee yards.
Seriously though, if you’re a beginning beekeeper, and you’re concerned about stings, wearing a suit may make all the difference between whether or not you’re able to enjoy your new hobby from the start.
A good beekeeper suit can all but eliminate the occurrence of stings (though nothing will totally eliminate the possibility of a sting).
It Isn’t Only Newbies That Wear Bee Suits…
Probably most beekeeping newbies start out wearing a bee suit.
If you start out wearing a suit, you’ll gradually become more comfortable working with your bees. And at some point, you might decide to dispense with the suit and just go with the gloves and veil – or even just the veil.
But on the other hand, you may well decide to keep wearing the suit.
There are many professional beekeepers who always wear a suit when working their hives.
And even if you reach a point where you don’t regularly wear your suit, it’s always good to have one on hand.
Because bees can be moody critters!
What Type of Suit Should You Buy?
If you decide to get a suit, there are many options available offering varying degrees of protection – and at substantially varying prices.
The possibilities range from just an upper body suit that doesn’t include headgear, to a full-body suit with zippered-on headgear.
It’s just a matter of balancing the level of protection and the quality you want with the money you’re willing to spend.
Here are a few good options worth considering:
Always Work Your Bees As Though You’re NOT Wearing a Suit – Even When You Are!
One additional point about using bee suits: If you wear a beekeeper suit, don’t let that influence the way you work your bees.
Some beekeepers, apparently emboldened by the protection of the suit, will work their bees aggressively, antagonizing the bees with jarring movements and abrupt actions.
I’ve seen it many times.
Don’t YOU be one of those beekeepers.
Even when you have the protection of a suit, work your bees the right way: calmly, methodically, and smoothly.
Don’t turn the luxury of wearing a suit into a necessity!