Re: Layens Vs Top Bar
Layens is a rectangular frame in a box made typically to hold 14 frames. It is designed to be extracted. Frames from top bar hives generally can't be extracted. This is the primary difference between the two. The Layens is not designed to have a box set on top for honey storage. The intent is to let the bees fill a frame then extract and return the empty frame to the hive to be re-filled. The Layens hive fits in a middle ground where it is more labor intensive but not as capital intensive as Langstroth equipment or similar top-supered hive designs. Think of it like this, with a Layens hive, an extractor, and some bees, you have everything needed to produce honey. A similar Langstroth setup would require 2 deep brood chambers and 4 or 5 supers for a total of 6 or 7 boxes. This represents a significant cost difference. Extending the comparison, a top bar hive is about as cheap as it gets, no extractor needed, just the box and bees. All honey produced is cut off the bars, squeezed, and strained.
NW Alabama, 47 years, 22 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest