I am looking into starting to learn Bee Keeping this coming New Year.. So I figure I need to ask questions now....
First one I got is.. What race of Bee is best for a beginner, but fends off Mites etc better.
I have read up a little and the Italians seem to be recommended more for newbees.
The Russians seem to more res to mites and so on though..
Next question what hive is best? A 8 or 10 frame langstrom? I want my hives to be as strong as possible to make more honey and defend itself/
Personally, I wouldn't get too caught up in the "what race of bee question". I'm just a year in and remember my early research, thinking that was a big issue. The more I talked to local beeks, I realized that most aren't really concerned with that...Bees are bees to a large degree. I decided to go with Nucs instead of packages and purchased local survivor stock....bascially Mutt bees, that have showed an ability to survive in my region :)
Everything since then I gathered from swarms and cut out calls...They are Honey Bees, that's about all I can tell you about them.
There is a guy in our LBC that bought some Russians, he says they're mean as Hell, whatever that's worth. :)
As to equipment, I went with all 8 frame medium equipment. As with most any decision, there are pros and cons. On the all mediums, I like the standard equipment allowing the ability to move frames around, as well as the weight savings. The only downside I really know is increased equipment cost, but the extra money you spend is still cheaper than back surgery. :-D
As to 8 verses 10 frames, I prefer 8...Again weight savings and it's a better width for the bees, less of an issue having to encourage them to draw the frames on the edges. A little of a cost issue, technically, you'll need more boxes to hold the same number of frames.