WBC

WBC

The WBC hive was designed in 1890 by William Broughton Carr. It is classified as a double walled hive and is the iconic image of a hive, usually painted white.

The inner boxes are made of thinner timber than the National, making it lighter.

The WBC brood chamber takes 10 long lug frames compared to 11 in the National hive. The frames are identical. Similarly, the WBC supers take up to 10 National super frames.

HIVE DATA NATIONAL NATIONAL 14×12 W B C COMMERCIAL
Brood frame 14″ x 8½” 14″ x 12″ 14″ x 8½” 16″ x 10″
Super frame 14″ x 5½” 14″ x 5½” 14″ x 5½” 16″ x 6″
Frames / brood box 11 11 10 12
Cells / brood box 54,000 80,000 49,000 80,000
Lug length 1½” 1½” 1½” 5/8″

The outer boxes or lifts act as protection for the inner hive. Thus there is double the amount of work moving boxes during inspections. This is offset to some extent by the extra protection afforded by the lifts.

WBC hives have the same capacity problem as Nationals so it is not surprising that a WBC brood box may be purchased to take 14 x 12 frames (note that an extra lift will be required). Or you could use double brood boxes for prolific colonies.

Other points to take into consideration:

  • The pitched roof makes it difficult to turn upside down and rest hive parts on, but the lifts can be removed, stacked to one side and used instead.
  • The protected inner boxes do not need paint or other wood preserver.

The drawing below is a typical WBC hive with sliders to vary the entrance width.

WBC hive with sliding entrance blocks
WBC hive with sliding entrance blocks
WBC
A modern WBC hive

News & Events

Varroa found in Australia
Read the latest news.
Only ONE bee dance!
Ever since I started beekeeping we were told there were two bee ‘dances’ used to recruit workers to good forage sources. Now, new research shows there is only ONE dance, the waggle dance, for communication of distance and direction to forage. This was revealed by slow motion video of the so called round dance.
Read the article in BBKA News, June 2022, p193.
‘Bee bricks become planning requirement for new buildings in Brighton’
A planning law introduced in the city of Brighton and Hove, England, calls for new buildings to include special bricks that provide nests for solitary bees.Read the article HERE.The bricks are not without controversy. Read their story HERE.
‘Bees may take generations to recover from one exposure to insecticides’
Study shows reduced reproduction and other negative impacts on performance of speciesIt may take bees multiple generations to recover from being exposed to insecticides even just once, research shows.Although studies have long shown the damaging effects of pesticides for the biodiverse environment, little is known about how much they affect insects in the long term.Read the article HERE
‘No one knew they existed’: wild heirs of lost British honeybee found at Blenheim.

The ‘ecotype’, thought to have been wiped out by disease and invasive species, is thriving in the estate’s ancient woodlands.Read the article HERE

US beekeepers sue over imports of fake
asian honey.

Read the article HERE.

Marks and Spencer project threat to honeybee diversity?

Good thing or bad thing? You decide. Read the article HERE.

Liquid gold: beekeepers defying Yemen war to produce the best honey

Read the article HERE.

Fungus creates fake fragrant flowers to fool bees

Fungi have been discovered making fake flowers that look and even smell like the real thing, fooling bees and other pollinating insects into visiting them.

Read the article HERE.

Spiders Can Fly Hundreds of Miles Using Electricity

Scientists are finally starting to understand the centuries-old mystery of “ballooning.”

Read the secrets HERE

Making a beeline: wildflower paths across UK could save species

Conservation charity aims to help restore 150,000 hectares of bee-friendly corridors to save the insects from extinction.

Read the article HERE.