Going into a hive with no protection?

Do you go into a hive with no protective gear? And if so why? And also what things do you do to ensure you don’t get stung?


For me it depends on what I’m doing. If I’m going to be inspecting or taking honey or doing something that will upset the bees, then I gear up. however I have done work outside of hives and have opened up tops for short spans with no gear on at all. However if you are going to work around bees with no suit, do expect to get stung once in awhile. Bees in general are protective of their home and honey and you are an invader. don’t be fooled by their seeming docility as they can get aggressive if they feel threatened in anyway. A good friend of mine worked bees for years without of suit and then one day for no real reason got attacked and had to run away, drop to ground and cover himself but was still stung 24 times, what he told me. If you are new at this it pays to use precaution.

be as protected as you need to be in order to work comfortable and without stress. beginner bee keeping is stressful enough without having to add the worries of being stung :slight_smile:
I think as you get more comfortable with the work and the bees you might drop some of the protective clothing. For myself I know I will never ever ever go in without hat and vale - if one of the girls gets into my hair or face I would be swatting and that doesn’t end well if you holding a frame

Always suit or jacket unless just topping rapid feeders up

I would never recommend it. Do I ever? Sure, but not often and it is usually a bad idea…


Thanks for the replies. Just wondering what other people do.
I have been stung, sticking my face near the door talking on the phone trying to figure out why the hive was raging…lol. Lesson learned. When the girls are upset, leave then BEE. Good thing I have little reaction to it. I have never been stung when in the hive.

I’m a newbie, but so far I still wait for my first sting to happen. I only wear a veil (the one that came with the flow frames :wink: ) so the bees won’t get caught in my hair. If I take only a short glimpse into the hive I don’t wear anything. Also I like to just stand by the hive and watch the business at the entrance. The bees don’t care.
Probably it depends on that bees you have. German thoroughbred Carnica bees are so calm, that they just stayed on their comb even when I tried to chase them off for brood check… :smirk:

Naked beekeeping? Wow, you are brave! :smile:

:yum: Of course I wear normal clothes! Some of my neighbours are scared enough from the bees, I don’t have to shock them anymore… :sweat_smile:

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Just remember, whilst your bees and queen are young and starting out, the colony is mostly docile but as they age in the lifecycle the bees tend to become more defensive of the hive and will sing more readily.

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I wish my bees sang. They only buzz…

; -D

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like a choir? Sing a Song of the Bees:


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Funny, good, bad, ballsy, creative and I think one of my ears is bleeding.


I used to be ‘gung ho’ when I first started beekeeping. Getting into my bees without even a veil. I few good stings soon put a stop to that. You’ll rarely see me into my bees unless I’m fully protected. Sometimes at home here, while working my bees, my feet are unprotected. I only wear thongs (flip flops). Not really recommended. You don’t want a sting under the thong strap or on the back or sides of the heel. Ouch!!!..Double Ouch!!! if it’s on the back or side of the heel.

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I can just imagine a young gung ho Jeff :smile:
I never dared. Getting stung a few times when you have the queen just about caught for marking and then dropping the whole frame (seen it) isn’t for me.
There’s nothing macho about not wearing at least a veil.
Oh…and new nucs are always gentle, or should be.

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