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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Oklahoma City, OK, USA
    Posts
    7

    Default I need all the advice I can find!

    My name is Jessica, from Oklahoma. I'm just beginning hobbyist beekeeping (hoping to start with maybe two hives and probably won't ever have very many more than that) and have been researching top bar hives. My friend, who works for a Langstroth beekeeper, says his boss worries that a top bar hive won't give you enough room for expansion...bees might not make it through winters. What do you all think?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Concrete, WA, USA
    Posts
    761

    Default Re: I need all the advice I can find!

    Hi jessica, welcome to beekeeping
    im by no means an expert keeper but i learn from things i and others have tried

    years ago i wanted to do the TBH because i was a worried about the cost of the 10 frame equiptment and hives ....so i built 2 TBH out of pine and the lumber came to about $60 if i remember - and i had to cut a grove in all of the top parts and pour beeswax in to that.. and then i put the bees in it ..

    all was good until about 2 mounths into it and the bees had made comb in every which direction --- it was a mess - i could not inspect it without tearing the comb and it would fall, loosing brood all the time -
    also i had one that made lots of drone comb - i even took a bar of worker cell from the other hive and put it in there and they ignored that and just made drone cells around it - errrr
    also only one hive made it to winter and then died by janurary - do to not having enought honey

    i think that the TBH do work but maybe if they are in Africa or way south so that they dont have to store as much -

    anyhow - after that i fount that the 10 frame was about the same cost
    and i could inspect and mangage the hives better -

    hope this helps with the decison

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Elizabeth, Colorado
    Posts
    69

    Default Re: I need all the advice I can find!

    Below is a link to a very informative book on beekeeping with the Warre top bar hive. You can read it online or you can print it out.

    http://www.google.com/url?sa=D&q=htt...Ci01CXsb0pYzHQ

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,479

    Default Re: I need all the advice I can find!

    You need a top bar hive that is large enough, of course...

    http://www.bushfarms.com/beestopbarhives.htm
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Oklahoma City, OK, USA
    Posts
    7

    Default Re: I need all the advice I can find!

    I think I read somewhere about using false backs that can be moved/removed when the bees need more space. Is that valid, or did I make it up? How big is "big enough?"

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Shallowater, Texas, USA
    Posts
    355

    Default Re: I need all the advice I can find!

    Jessica- welcome to the forum. I'm in the TX panhandle. I don't use top bar hives, so no help there. But you have come to a place with a wealth of knowledge and lots of helpful folks. My best advice, read....read.....read everything you can get your hands on. The biggest obstacle to new beeks is the learning curve. Ask tons of questions and don't get discouraged.
    "you can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink"...well that horse ain't got nothing on a bee.

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