This spring I am thinking of going to pallets. Have any of you used the one in this link?
I made eight, two hive screened bottom pallets for my BeeBed last winter. Have hive clips to secure hives, and mite trays. Can send pics if interested.
I use alot of pallets. They are advertised for free almost every week in the paper. Piles are sitting everywhere you look. I pick the hard-wood sturdy ones. Some can be reenforced and even plywood pad added if you want.
If they are to be moved, I simply push the hives (4) together and use a 1" strip on the side of the hives with a wood screws. Two hives face one way and the other two the opposite. Then put a screw through the front entrance to hold them down and from jumping up.
If its a permenant site I like to use 10" cinder blocks layed side by side. 2 per hive. This puts them up a little and no need to worry about wood rot over the years.
I find that the pallets also help with skunk problems. I guess with the hives higher up, the skunks belly is more exposed to stings. Ever since I went to pallets, I find little to no skunk damage in any of my yards.
I use two pallets per grouping, it keeps your good pallet off the ground and last longer.
>>I simply push the hives (4) together and use a 1" strip on the side of the hives with a wood screws. Two hives face one way and the other two the opposite. Then put a screw through the front entrance to hold them down and from jumping up.
BjornBee, great idea. I'm going to do that from now on. I throw a pallet on top and strap them down, but never seems to work very well, my hives are not all uniform enough. I don't move yards all that often anyway.
I've worked bees by hand, with pallets using a bobcat, forklift and a boom truck. I think that only for the very large operations are pallets a good idea. I think its much better to use a boom truck and move hives individually because:
1) With pallets, you get a lot of drifting, which helps spread disease, especially when moving.
2) With pallets, it is much harder on your back to add supers and take them off.
3) With pallets, you are forced to move all four colonies even if one or two should be left behind.
4) With a boom lift, you can weigh colonies, remove supers, inspect hives, load supers on and off a truck, and remove individual hives from a yard if they are diseased.
5) With pallets, you have to tow a forklift, pay for it and maintain it.
6) With pallets, your equipment tends to take a beating when loading and unloading.
The only real advantage I feel pallets have is that you can go 'cross country' with a four whell drive forklift or bobcat, other than that I would stick to a boom lift.
Did any of you check out the link. I like the first one where the pallet doubles as a bottom board. What do you think about them?
It is popular with some commercial beekeepers. I dont like the idea though. Your cant move individual hives away, and cant move them around on the pallet. I group in fours for winter, and like to keep the hives snug together. You also have to modify the pallet. And you have to buy good pallets to make the work worth while and last.
In Dadants Beginning Beekeeping book he states not to put more than one hive on a single stand/platform in order to minimize disturbing hives you aren't working with. Makes sense to me.
Hi,All:Been gone for awhile.I seem to have more problems with mice when I place hives on pallet's.I've noticed it several times so I quit using them.Anyone else noticed or had that problem?>>>>Mark