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Thread: the ideal hive?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Manhattan,Montana,USA
    Posts
    358

    Default the ideal hive?

    i only have two hives with newly packaged bees. i have them in the typicall ten frame langstroth bottom entrance hives with ritecell foundation which they are drawing. I want to make a split as soon as the hives are ready. it seems as the the top bar and horizontal hives are more work. what type of hive is the easiest most natural style to go with. I was thinking of going with langstroth hive and just insert some foundationless frames and let them draw there own comb also go with top entrance nine frames and no queen excluder. what do you think? i do live in Montana so is there any forseen problems with going this way? Michael Bush What style do use mostly use?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,366

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    I use foundationless exclusively. I do 10 frame in the brood nest and 10 frame anytime I'm drawing new comb. Once drawn, 8 or 9 frames in the honey supers. I don't use excluders. Don't split too soon. Bigger hives make honey.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    mineral county,Montana USA
    Posts
    801

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    well the most natural would probably be top bar hive, they would probably regress themselves to small cell pretty quickly. the easiest would probably be standard equipment just because its standard and works with everything else. the lightest would be shallows the heaviest would be 10 frame deeps. letting them build foundation is a good idea but in manhattan, as well as here, you will have a few good weeks or maybe a month,starting yesterday where they draw alot of wax. after that you just check on them and they dont make much progress with wax.when you first hived the packages would have been a good time to give them foundationless. if you do split, the split will probably draw some.the people who do it alot, and do it themselves all swear by running all mediums. 8 frame med. they say ways about 48 #s a full deep weighs 96#s so its easy to see why. mine are all deeps but if i get serious i will porbably switch. on a side i used to live in belgrade. a friend was the hired man on the cole farm (potatoes) so i spent some time in manhattan.good luck justin just remembered the cole farm was in amsterdam but i was still in manhattan quite a bit.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Manhattan,Montana,USA
    Posts
    358

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    justin, the Coles live within a few miles west of me depending on which cole farm you are talking about. thee are two differn't familys with farms. It is nice to hear from another Montanan. I just was wondering about swarms up here in montana. I was thinking we are just entering swarm season. Have you ever caught any? thankyou for the info.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Medford,WI,USA
    Posts
    33

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwest View Post
    it seems as the the top bar and horizontal hives are more work. what type of hive is the easiest most natural style to go with.

    What makes you make this statement? I can only speak from my very limited, first year experience with my 2-KTBH's; never have had Langs, but from the posts on this board I'd say they (Langs) would be WAY more work to manage. Other than the actual construction, my TBH's have been NO work other than the install of the packages and feeding in the spring. And if you factor in the cost of hive (<$50 versus $250+) I'd say the construction was 'worth' the time. Part of the advantage of using TBH's (Kenya or Warre) is the 'hands off approach'. You don't have to worry about supers or any of that stuff.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    637

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    I've used Langstroth, Warre and Top Bar Hives and I find horizontal top bar hives to be the easiest to work with. If you use follower boards they do require a bit more monitoring, but the ease of equipment, the low cost, the low impact on the bees makes them a cut above in my mind. I use Warre hives at my yards that are too far away to check weekly.

    Matt

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

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    Mostly I do medium eight frame boxes with a mixture of foundationless Hoffman frames, Mann Lake PF120s, and wax dipped PermaComb (about a hundred of these). I have a couple of top bar hives as well. I like them all, but for an outyard the top bar hives are not very practical and for serious queen breeding etc. the standard sized (eight frames have been around for more than 150 years) work better for me than the top bar hives.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    mineral county,Montana USA
    Posts
    801

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    "I was thinking we are just entering swarm season. Have you ever caught any? thankyou for the info. "
    yes but unfortunatly they were from my own hives. i am putting out a couple traps this year, in a week or so. it looks like i will be headed to bozeman in a day or 2 for a friends funeral and could stop in, tell you everything i know about beekeeping in about 4 minutes. if you're intrested pm me.

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