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Smith

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Smith

The Smith hive was designed by W. Smith of Innerleithen near Peebles, Scotland. The design concepts were simplicity, adequate brood area for local conditions and ease of transport to the heather.

A brood chamber containing 11 National brood frames 14” wide x 8½” deep proved sufficient for the local bees but to design a hive of simple construction Smith followed the American Langstroth pattern.

Hive data

National

National 14x12

Smith

Brood frame

14" x 8½"

14" x 12"

14" x 8½"

Super frame

14" x 5½"

14" x 5½"

14" x 5½"

Frames / brood box

11

11

11

Cells / brood box

54,000

80,000

54,000

Lug length

1½"

1½"

3/4"

The top bars of the National frames were reduced from 17” to 15½” and the resulting short lugs were let into a rebate cut into the thickness of the end wall.

Smith hive detail   Smith Hive detail
Note the rebate cut into the thickness of the hive wall and the resulting short lugs. The original design was top bee space (as shown) but can be made bottom bee space if preferred.

The resulting hive is 18¼” x 16⅜” made from four pieces of timber.  Compare this to the more complex Modified National which is 18⅛” square and requires eight pieces of timber.

The Smith hive is still popular today in the north of the country where the season is shorter, the weather cooler and the brood chamber sufficient for a normal colony. Further south the brood chamber may prove too small for a prolific colony so the beekeeper may expand the brood area using the same techniques as with the National, namely brood and a half, double brood or 14 x 12.

The single large size of 14×12 brood frames provides the bees with the opportunity to cluster and move upwards during the winter in a similar way to their natural behaviour. In brood and a half and double brood there are barriers to movement in the form of frame top bars, a gap for bee space and the bottom bars of the frame above. Colonies with brood may not bridge the gap or may move sideways.  Both situations can lead to isolation starvation.

 

More hives:  |National| National 14×12 | WBC | Commercial | Langstroth | Dadant | Dartington | Beehaus | Warré |

 

 

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News & Events

Axminster Tools & Machinery
Free event
Sat 29 September 2018
11:00 – 14:00 hrs
at the Axminster Store – An introduction To Bee Keeping With East Devon Beekeepers

There’s a great deal of interest in bees these days … would you like to find out what it is all about?Our ‘Introduction to Beekeeping’ event will be hosted by John Badley, Chairman of East Devon Beekeepers, who will cover the history of hive design, definition and importance of bee space and required materials for construction. This will be followed by a demonstration by the Axminster team, on how to build the key components of your own wooden beehives.

John’s presentation will start at 11am and should run for about an hour, and he’ll be available for questions and one-to-one discussions afterwards. This is a free event, between 11:00-14:00, with light refreshments provided so come and find out what all the buzz is about!

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
LATEST ASIAN HORNET WARNING
The National Bee Unit has confirmed a sighting of a single Asian hornet in Lancashire. More information can be found in the Defra Press release:   https://www.gov.uk/government/news/asian-hornet-identified-in-lancashire