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Beekeeping suit basics and working close to annoyed bees

 
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 100
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 1:32 pm    Post subject: Beekeeping suit basics and working close to annoyed bees Reply with quote

Hi
I will start with my question and then fill in the background.

I am looking to buy a suit so I can do some repairs on a hive/box and think that I may as well buy a suit so I can wotk up close when needed.
As an example I have sen this one https://www.amazon.co.uk/Bee-suit-ALL-SIZES-Medium/dp/B00BO3FDPO/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1462800093&sr=8-3&keywords=simonthebeekeeper which seems ok.
I am not asking for yes or no on this model but does it seem to have what a suit needs and any other things to look out for or general suggestions.
I can buy this in France, where I am, complete with gloves etc, so trousers, jacket, veil and gloves for 65 euros which seems good value.
How secure are the elasticated bits on these suits, worth taping just to be sure ?

I need to repair a bird roosting box that was occupied by a swarm 4 years ago, it is still in use (see related post on moving bees) but is starting to deteriorate. I have posted here on this so for details just look up previous posts.
A local beekeeper has offered to fit any repair sections I make but I would rather not bother him as very busy at the moment.
Also it would help if I could do basic tasks myself.
I don't harvest the honey so don't bother them much jsut want to be safe when messing with the box they are in.
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1574
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 4:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That looks fine to me, although I personally prefer the broad brimmed hat type veil rather than the fencing style that this is, but nothing wrong with the one advertised, it's just a matter of personal preference.
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 100
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 6:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, I thought these would be much the same just some better thought out than others.
I noticed they mentioned extra elbow room, seems a sore point (pardon the pun) from other reviews I read. Just things like that I am interested in.

I only need this occasionally, hopefully about twice a year ? as I would rather leave them to their own devices. But if I need to intervene then decent protection would be my choice. My last 'stinging' was from about 6 wasps after I inadvertently strimmed their nest in a load of pampas grass, no wish to repeat that.

Seems a decent price point, I have seen them from £15 to £100 so usually the middle is a good place to start, especially for an occasional amateur like myself. I do like bees and even set up an insect area, tubes, bamboo etc for wild bees (actually in use) but I also have log piles etc. Nice to see them about and they don't bother anybody, just when you mess them about.
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Tavascarow
Silver Bee


Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Posts: 962
Location: UK Cornwall Snozzle

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 9:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've just bought a new jacket & veil & It's fine but made from lighter weight fabric than my old sherriff smock.
But it was a third of the price.
You get what you pay for so cheap will mean lighter weight.
No bee suit bar heavy canvas (which would be uncomfortable & hot to wear) is going to be sting proof.
It's primary purpose is to stop bees getting in & getting you & them in a flap whilst they crawl around in your underwear.
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http://www.fotothing.com/Tavascarow
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 100
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Mon May 09, 2016 9:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, I guess nothing is perfect.
Basically such as this type of suit should do for me. Just up to me to minimise exposure and keep annoyance to a minimum.
Even my local beekeper said he gets stung 20 ish times a year, and he has proper gear and knows what he is doing. Smile
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rmcpb
Scout Bee


Joined: 17 Jul 2011
Posts: 447
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 7:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Any suit is better than none. Don't get too hung up on it. There is no problem starting with a cheap one and getting a better one later if you stick to the hobby. As for stings, they happen and are cause of great concern to most in the beginning but unless you are truely allergic your reaction usually lessens over time. Stings are part of beekeeping.

Cheers
Rob.
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trekmate
Golden Bee


Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 1125
Location: UK, North Yorkshire, Bentham

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 7:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've used a lot of kit from the same supplier. Generally well made to a budget. It's worth checking his own website and ebay as he also sells the same things there sometimes at different prices. You might save a few Euros! Cool
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 100
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 4:24 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the advice. I should be ok with stings, no allergic reactions so far, only allergy is to unnecessary pain. But I think we all have that one.

I did think the suit I looked at seemed decent, I will look around for the other sources.

Is just a smock, no trousers, setup ok or are jeans not enough and offer too many entry points ? I could tape round the ankles but not the waist really.
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Tavascarow
Silver Bee


Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Posts: 962
Location: UK Cornwall Snozzle

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 7:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If the suit is fine weave & clean the bees wont try to sting through it.
I've worked some aggresive colonies & the bees fly at the face & sting the hands.
I've had bees crawling all over me but they rarely try to sting unless you agitate them.
Learning to stay calm & not over react.
Learning how to work efficiently but with care & know when a colony is saying enough is enough it's time to close up & come back another day is my best advice.
One more.
Always tuck your trousers in your socks or wear wellies.
There is nothing more disconcerting than felling a bee crawling up your inner leg towards your nether regions. I know Wink
_________________
Don't worry
Bee happy.
Member of Cornwall Natural Beekeepers
http://z7.invisionfree.com/Natural_Beekeeping/index.php?showforum=4
http://www.fotothing.com/Tavascarow
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trekmate
Golden Bee


Joined: 30 Nov 2009
Posts: 1125
Location: UK, North Yorkshire, Bentham

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 8:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tavascarow wrote:
Always tuck your trousers in your socks or wear wellies.

Bees sting through socks. Just ask Phil!

I wear wellies or walking boots. Suit inside wellies, tight around the top of walking boots.
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rmcpb
Scout Bee


Joined: 17 Jul 2011
Posts: 447
Location: Blue Mountains, NSW, Australia

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 8:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jeans are fine. I never tuck my jeans into my socks as that exposes your ankles with just the sicks for protection. Bees up your trousers are not generally a problem, all they want to do is get out.

Cheers
Rob.
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 100
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks again, the fact they go for face and hands (exposed skin I guess) makes sense. The time the wasps stung me it was all on the head, how do they know.

Neighbour was worried about then but I just waved my hand in front of the entrance and said hi girls how are things going, totally ignored. Unless really upset not a problem, food and work seem to mean you are very low prority Smile
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Tavascarow
Silver Bee


Joined: 24 Jun 2008
Posts: 962
Location: UK Cornwall Snozzle

PostPosted: Tue May 10, 2016 10:34 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

charentejohn wrote:
Thanks again, the fact they go for face and hands (exposed skin I guess) makes sense. The time the wasps stung me it was all on the head, how do they know.

Neighbour was worried about then but I just waved my hand in front of the entrance and said hi girls how are things going, totally ignored. Unless really upset not a problem, food and work seem to mean you are very low prority Smile

Carbon dioxide apparently.
_________________
Don't worry
Bee happy.
Member of Cornwall Natural Beekeepers
http://z7.invisionfree.com/Natural_Beekeeping/index.php?showforum=4
http://www.fotothing.com/Tavascarow
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