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Which Hive?

Sub-pages:  |National| National 14×12 | WBC | Commercial | Smith | Langstroth | Dadant | Dartington | Beehaus | Warré | Kenyan top bar |

Which Hive?

There is a bewildering selection of hive types to choose from.  How do you decide which one is right for you, especially if you are a Beginner?

In the East Devon area there are mainly four types of hive in use by hobbyist beekeepers, and as you are more likely to obtain bees on frames from one of them we will consider these four types.

They are:   National,   National 14 x 12,   WBC,   Commercial

There are a few beekeepers in the East Devon area who have moved away from the complexity of the National hive construction but who still wish to retain the same brood area as a National. The Smith hive fulfils these criteria.

The Langstroth, Jumbo Langstroth and the Dadant hives are of North American origin and have been through a number of changes and modifications since their inception in the second half of the 19th century and the early 20th century. They now use frames of the same width and the Jumbo Langstroth frame will fit a Dadant brood chamber but the hive cross sections are different and Dadant hives often have wider brood frame spacing. The majority of hives are top bee space but there are regional differences, for example the Buckfast Dadant is bottom bee space.

These pages describe some newer types of hive which are based on the National 14 x 12 frame.

They are:  Dartington Long Deep Hive,   Omlet Beehaus

These hives have been designed for a variety of reasons which are outlined in the text. They are also made with modern materials unlike traditional wooden hives.

Top bar hives take many forms and their origins date back hundreds of years. The Warré hive is a top bar hive, usually referred to as ‘The People’s Hive’ in France where it was designed by Abbé Émile Warré (1867 – 1951) and described in his book Beekeeping for All.

As the hive does not use conventional frames like the other hives described so far the calculation of the number of cells available for brood in each hive box is approximate.

The original Kenyan top bar hive was introduced by the ‘Bees for Development’ programme and designed to be easily constructed with cheap local materials by beekeepers in Kenya and other African countries.

Click on the sub-page links at top or bottom of this page to find out more about each type of hive.

Sub-pages:  | National | National 14×12 | WBC | Commercial | Smith | Langstroth | Dadant | Dartington | Beehaus | Warré | Kenyan top bar |

 

Latest updates:
2019 Beginners Course
2019 Membership details

Recent update = Asian hornet page

 

News & Events

What’s that Buzz? Plants hear when bees are coming
New research has shown that plants can ‘hear’ sounds around them and flowers respond to the buzz of approaching bees by producing sweeter nectar. The research biologists from Tel Aviv University played recordings of flying bee sounds to evening primrose flowers and found that after a few minutes the sugar concentration in the flower’s nectar had increased by 20% on average when compared with flowers left in silence or submitted to higher pitched sounds.
The authors of the report say that, for the first time, they have shown plants can rapidly respond to pollinator sounds in an ecologically relevant way.
Producing sweeter nectar in response to the sounds of bees can help entice the insects to visit the flowers and increase the chances of its pollen being distributed.
Thanks to Ann P. for spotting this article in the Times.
Scientists sew trackers to Asian Hornets to find and destroy nests before they kill honeybees
Britain’s beekeepers are turning to technology to prevent aggressive Asian hornets destroying their colonies. In a first successful trial, experts at the University of Exeter attached tracking devices to the backs of the voracious hornets and then followed them back to their nests.
Asian hornet information
The June edition of the BBKA News has extensive information about the Asian hornet threat. In particular, pages 209 and 210 have full colour reproductions of the Asian hornet alert document issued by the Non Native Species Secretariat (NNSS) for you to cut out and use as your personal guide to identification of this invasive species.
EU agrees total ban on bee-harming pesticides
More information can be found at:          https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2018/apr/27/eu-agrees-total-ban-on-bee-harming-pesticides?CMP=Share_iOSApp_Other