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Costs to begin beekeeping

What are the actual cost associated with becoming a Honney Bee Keeper?

All I actually need is a box, right? I can just go turn the handle and get FREE honey any time I want, correct?

It can't be that hard I see the old guy/gal down the street out playing with their honeybees all the time!


If you are seriously interested in even remotely thinking about becoming a Beekeeper I would suggest that you take just 1 year and find a Beekeeper that you can watch, learn  from and actively participate in the activites. Not when you want to but when ever he calls and says things need to get done!

If you think you are prepared at least think a bit more and then do or ask yourself the following!

  • Research if you are able to keep bees in your area
  • Read all that you can. Books $0-$20
  • Find a Mentor or Join the local club and/or take a class. $45-$75
  • Ask yourself, why you would like to keep bees.
  • Are you afraid of being stung?
  • Are you allergic to insect bites or stings?
  • Do you have a good location?
  • Can you lift at least 25 pounds?
  • Can you tend to the hives year-round? (Do you really have the time)
  • Be a courteous neighbor.
  • Can you afford it?


Can you afford it?




To begin you will need some basic beekeeping equipment including:


  • Beehive: $120-$200
  • Hive Tool: $7-$12
  • Bee Brush: $6-$10
  • Bee Smoker: $30-$40
  • Protective Gear: $20-$160.
  • Buying a complete Starter Kit is another option. $200-$450.
  • ETC... $$
  • ETC......$$$
  • ETC...........$$$$$ (yes it is alwyas an ongoing thing)



All depends on how you want to go about getting your Honey Bees

  • Capture Swarms Free (Hardware can be built)
  • Cutouts Free (Not for faint of heart or beginner and equipment can be $$$)
  • Package bees: usually 2-3 lbs. of worker bees w/Mated queen $100-$175
  • Nucleus Colony: an established colony in a 5-frame box $150-$200
  • Complete Hive: $300-$650 (Typically Single deep with established colony)


By clicking the link below you can download an older speadsheet that shows a breakdown of associated cost of beekeping though it is not complete!


The cost of becoming a Honey Bee Keeper


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Tennessee's Honey Bees