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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    DeQueen, Arkansas
    Posts
    18

    Observation bee hives

    I am looking for an observation hive for our 4H club and wonder if anyone has had any experience with the Ulster type hive that Brushy Mountain is now selling and I might add at a pretty hefty price.
    :Now hold er tween the fences and don't squat with yer spurs on!
    Cowboygourmet

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,481

    Default

    I have an Ulster. It's kind of heavy and I haven't kept bees in it, I just go pull some frames from one of my few deeps (most are mediums) and populate it to take to a demonstration. I made the mistake of grabbing it by the middle of the top board in an attempt to save my back and found a lot of bees escaped. I'd not recommend that move. Otherwise it was a nice hive to take to an event. The larger box below gives them some resources to work with and bees to heat and cool things while the area up top gives you some visual access to the queen.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    DeQueen, Arkansas
    Posts
    18

    Ulster hive

    Michael, have you any suggestions for the Ulster hive if I am to build one. I think I would like to incorporate a lid type feeder instead of one that inserts into the hive itself. do you know how wide the glass is on the upper part where the queen would reside?
    " never drink downstream from the herd"
    Cowboygourmet

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,481

    Default

    >Michael, have you any suggestions for the Ulster hive if I am to build one. I think I would like to incorporate a lid type feeder instead of one that inserts into the hive itself. do you know how wide the glass is on the upper part where the queen would reside?

    I suppose part of the issue is what the goal is. There are things *I* would like but that doesn't mean there's a market for those. Plus there is the possibility of making one to actually keep bees indoors in.

    Things I would like:

    I'd like it to take mediums (of course) and I'd like the top exposed part to take two of them. Of course that is difficult to do the way they have it set up to drop in from the top. So maybe it's not worth it.

    I'd like a window on the bottom section as well so it's not so much of a mystery what is there to those looking at the bees.

    As far as being able to keep it inside, a feeder that could be filled without facing the bees would be nice. In fact, if you're at a multi day event it would be nice as well. I modified my Tew hive to take a small jar of water and a small jar of syrup so they can get water if they like. Also for a long event it would be nice to be able to feed pollen somewhere.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Location
    DeQueen, Arkansas
    Posts
    18

    Arrow Observation bee hive for 4H

    Has anyone else out there had any experience with observation hives especially the Ulster hive?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Minnesota
    Posts
    91

    Default

    Cowboy, we built an OH similar to the Ulster hive several years ago. I haven't seen the one Brushy Mountain sells but I assume it is similar. We use ours for demonstrations but do not try to keep it stocked in between engagements. I don't think it is big enough, for one thing.

    If I were going to build a stationary OH I would make it one frame deep and as many frames high as I could manage, say 7 or 8, then I would add a box at the top for surplus honey and brood. You could then place a feeder (jar, maybe) on top of the super if you wanted to and it would be easy to access for maintenance.

    I haven't ever seen a design for an OH which served both the purposes of long term display and portability that I thought was feasible. The only way that I would try to use the Ulster-type on a long-term basis would be if I could constantly pull out frames of excess brood/honey and put them into another hive, replacing them with empty combs, but even then, I think it would be a hassle.

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