Sunday, September 26, 2010

Beekeeping Bee Hive

 The first thing that you invest in when you want start beekeeping is the Langstroth hive. You can build it or buy it, it dose not matter how you acquire it as long as it well built from strong wooden material.

Parts of Langstroth Hive include:
  • Hive Stand
  • Bottom board
  • Slatted rack
  • Lower deep or brood chamber
  • Upper deep or food chamber
  • Queen excluder
  • Shallow honey super
  • Inner cover
  • Outer cover
To protect your hive fro the elements you should apply paint to the outside of the hive only, do not paint the following:
  • Feeder ( the one located at the top of the hive)
  • Cover ( the whole cover should not be painted or stained)
  • Hive bodies
  • Frames
 The reason for not painting these is it may cause the bees to swarm from the smell of the paint and also not allowing the paint chemicals to get in the honey.

 When your are planning on moving the hives be sure to strap it together to insure the hive stays together. It is very possible for the to come apart when transporting them.

Understanding the Langstroth Hive

 The hives that are mainly used around the world: the straw or basket hives, top bar hives, and the Langstroth hive. We are going to look at Langstroth hive which is the most popular in the United states.

 Let's look at the parts of the Langstroth hive and how they come together. The hive is going to be exposed to the elements most hive makers use cypress for the base because it resists water and rotting better than other woods.

 Another important part of the hive is the stand. It keeps the hive up away from the moist ground and aids in the ventilation of the hive by not having grass or any other structures blocking the hive entrance and slowing down the bees.

 In the winter months the hive has a entrance reducer that helps keep the cool out of the hive, in the warmer months the entrance reducer should only be used for colonies that are newly introduced to the hive.

 The deep hive body is the main part of the Langstroth hive, this is where the waxed frames are installed and honey is made. The honey is stored and cured in lower deep, while the upper deep is used by the queen to lay eggs and the larva is taken care of by nursing bees.

 The queen excluder is a screen used to prevent the queen from entering the honey supers. The excluder should only be used active honey production, it is designed so that the worker bees can pass through it but not the queen due to her size.

 Bees do better with the use of wooden wax foundations than plastic foundations. The bees work faster with the wooden frame with wax foundation, although some beekeepers argue that in the long run the plastic is a better investment because it want rot. That's true, but bees a slower to accept plastic and are ready to start making honey with the wax foundation.

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