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Dress for Success Around Beehives
Sting prevention is not only wearing protective clothing, it is calm deliberate movement.

Honey bees only sting in self defense. If you look like a bear, smell like a flower, or threaten bees by swatting or smashing, they will defend themselves. Consider these recommencations a starting point. You will see pictures from our bee workshops. Beekeepers are wearing everything not suggested and not getting stung. The difference is they are not swatting, not acting aggressive, and are moving calmly.

The goal is not to get stung:

  • Wear a veil. This is the single most important item since bees attack the face of bears and large aggressors.
  • Cover as much as possible with coveralls, long sleeve shirt, long pants, socks, and gloves.
  • Smooth cloth of light colors is preferred. Wool, suede, and leather are discouraged.
  • Do not wear strong perfumes, wrist watches, or rings (swelling could restrict blood flow if stung)
  • Gloves from most to least desirable are plastic, cloth and leather.
  • Do not swat near a hive. Keep your hands in your pockets to break the habit.
  • Bees sting to defend their home, approach or stand to the side or rear of the hive, not the front.
  • If you are in the flight path you are more likely to get run into.
  • Calm patient slow movements are least provocative.
beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com