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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm putting together a blog post about what beekeepers put in their hive inspection kit so that they're prepared while out in the apiary, both for my own personal interest and to share with other beginners out there.

So I've come to you, the professionals, to find out: What do you pack in your hive kit? What are the basics and what are some things that you find helpful that I may overlook as a beginner?

Thanks!
 

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Hive tools - more than one
Benedryl - never a bad idea
Bandaids - I always need those
Toothpicks - for examining cells with dead larvae or pupae
Extra smoker fuel - never a bad idea
Newspaper - for combining if neccesary
Small pieces of wood - levelling hives
Piece of # 8 hardware cloth to block entrance - if I have to make up a quick nuc to stop a swarm
Butane lighter - to relight the smoker that won't stay lit, gave up on matches long ago!
Hammer and small box of various nails - on the spot repairs to woodenware
Hive staples
Plastic tote to carry it all

I will stop there and let others chip in. :mrgreen:
 

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I carry most of the same stuff Perry lists above in a Rubbermaid tote.

I also carry:
My binder of hive records
An extra folding hat/veil combo (in case I have guests)
Bee brush
spray bottle of rubbing alcohol (works wonders in removing propolis from your hands)
A pair of bee gloves (I usually go glove-less, but sometimes have a testy hive I must work)
thumb tacks (so I can "mark" the top of a frame I want to keep an eye on for some reason, such as a queen cell, etc.)
A hair-clip queen catcher
duct tape (of course)
 

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Just to inspect?

I bring:

veil & gloves
Velcro straps to cinch around my pant legs so they can't crawl up inside (!)
smoker, lighter, and smoker fuel
Hive tool
bee brush
frame rest (very handy)
sometimes a camera

then again I only have 3-6 hives at any one time.
 

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In addition to what others have already posted:

- AJ's Beetle Eaters (enough for one in every hive).
- A bottle of cooking oil to use in the beetle eaters
- A turkey flavor injector syringe to fill the beetle eaters with after they're placed in the hives empty to eliminate any risk of spilling oil all over the hive.
- Ratcheting tie-down straps
- An extra bottom board, top cover, hive body and frames with undrawn founation (because if I keep drawn foundation in the back of my truck it melts on the first hot day and makes a mess of both the frames and the bed of the truck).
- A blow-torch (works better than anything else I've seen for lighting smokers).
- Three queen excluders (I think half the reason I carry them with me is that I don't have a place to keep them in the garage)
- 5 pounds of dry granulated cane sugar and a gallon of water just in case I find a hive that's starving I can make light syrup on the spot and pour it over them then leave the leftover sugar on top just like a mountaincamp.
- A fire extinguisher (read too many stories not to)
- A ladder (in case I find a swarm hanging from a tree just out of reach, also part of why I carry the extra hive equipment, though being able to do a split or add a box to a big hive without returning home to get more equipment is also a big plus)
- A small roll of window screening (it's cheaper than #8 hardware cloth and works just as well for screening off a hive).
- A good bee book (never know when you'll find you have extra time on your hands).
- A roll of duct tape.
 

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I like to carry all of the above junk in a five frame dcoates plywood nuc, handy little box and can make a split, catch a swarm, hold a frame or two while you make an inspection.
 

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That's a great idea G3. Why have I been using a plastic tub? It makes no sense when I could use a hive box instead. Thanks for the tip.
 

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I am into simple... so my basic kit is veil, gloves, hive tool and smoker. sometimes I have a few nails and a hammer in the truck. without a doubt some folks essential tools would require a semi to haul it around.

all the extra stuff I carry around is usually bee wood wares and at this time of year excluders. a bit later the excluders will be exchanged for hive feeders (frame style).
 

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I have my bees where I can drive right up to them. I carry a lit smoker and a hive tool to the hives.

In my truck, I have too many items to list.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks everyone! I really like the idea of having a fire extinguisher. I never thought about that before, but if we're keeping a hot smoker going in long dry grass, that could literally be a life saver.

Lots of other good ideas too. Thanks so much!
 

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I'm kinda like Iddee, except my bee shed is right next to my bees, so I go to the shed as I need things. When I head into the hives I have only my veil and a hive tool. If I need other stuff, it's just a 10-foot walk to whatever I need.
 

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Mostly the stuff already listed 5 frame nuc, 2 bee jackets, duct tape, hive tool, smoker and fuel, several large containers of cinnamon, sweat pants ( I wear shorts year round ), long socks to pull over the sweat pants, propane torch for windy days to light the smoker, and three pair of gloves. After reading this post I'm gonna add a fire extinguisher ( have several of these around the house for when we are making fireworks) and velcro straps.
 

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Im like Iddee, I drive the van 10 feet from the hives and have everything a beeks needs, and a carpenter as well, way too much to list, from day to day things change so ya never know what your going to need.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
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