Wear beekeeping apparel to protect yourself from stings.,
Choose a sunny day around mid-day to work the bees.,
Obtain a 5 gallon (18.9 L) bucket to place your bee working tools in.,
Fill your smoker with your chosen burning material.,
Light the smoker just before you reach the hive.
Approach the hive from the back, out of the landing path of the heavily laden bees.,
Open the top of the hive, and blow smoke into the inner cover.,
Pull out the frame closest to the side of the bee box, and lay it on the ground.,
Move downward into the brood box.,
Remove honey-loaded supers, and replace with a fresh super and frames.,
If you choose to do so, feed and/or medicate the bees as needed.
Replace all hive components, and quietly leave the area.
Clean all hive tools with disinfectant.
This could include a commercial bee suit, but at the very least it should include a hat with a veil and bee gloves. Wear thick, long clothes, tuck your pants into thick socks, and wear sturdy shoes. You may want to put rubber bands around your ankles to prevent bees from crawling up your pants.
Bees are more aggressive to dark colors. Wear light-colored clothing when working with bees.;
, More bees will be away from the hive working during this time. Cloudy, rainy days should be avoided. Many bees will be at the hive, and they seem to be more apt to sting on these days.
, This will allow you to keep everything together and transport them easily when going out to work bees. Place in the bucket a smoker, a hive tool, burning material, matches or a lighter, and any feed or medication needed for the bees at the time you work them.
, Common choices are burlap, pine needles, corncobs, wood pellets, dried grass, or mulch. Smoking bees calms them by causing them to gorge on honey. The smoke masks the alarm signal from the guard bees.
,, Come around to the front, and blow a few puffs of smoke into the entrance of the hive. Move away, and wait 3 minutes.
, Use the hive tool, if needed, to remove the inner cover and blow smoke between the frames as you remove and inspect them. The hive tool is useful for breaking the propolis, which is the resin-like material bees use to glue areas of their hive. Give the bees plenty of time to eat.
, Move the other frames into that place after you have inspected them. Gently lift the frames up, and allow the bees to let go and move out of the way.
, Look for the queen and sealed brood, and make sure that you have ample frames for the colony to work with. Check on any abnormalities and pests, such as mites or moths.
, If you’re preparing the bees for winter, reduce the entrance to the hive and remove any extra supers. This will force the bees down into the brood boxes to store honey for the winter.