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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    addison,maine,USA
    Posts
    114

    Default Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    LET'S TALK OH DESIGN, MANAGEMENT & EXPERIENCES.
    I'm on my #2 prototype.
    First question; best glass to glass ID" ?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,397

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    1.5" to 1.75". Go toward the low end if you are small cell.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    collbran, co
    Posts
    546

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    hello, I built 1 this year first one and of course like you need some ideas..the fist one i built is 4' high 33" wide tried for three frames but the bees corrected me 4 frames deep so back to the drawing board..They want 4 so ill make one the problem is the bees get confused with the light coming in from the glass they can not find the exit to easy..So I made several exits they still fumble around in the hive but not as much..still thinking about the size i would like to winter them over in it...One thing i was thinking about making 2 hives in the current observation hive..Spliting the two by a screen so they can share the heat.Also thinking of starting over since it got cold and the glass cracked.It didn't crack too far since the bees built there brace comb on the glass..As far as cell size i let them choose all natural comb for me.Just used plastic to get them started straight..I'm useing double pain house window wood frame.Eventually, since they are my pets, i would like to winter all my bees in them.Ok not all they multiply so darn fast manage ment used standard deep frame..experances i started with one deep frame eggs med frame honey full capped one deep frame with comb barely started.
    number of bees about 3lbs started 13th of july this year russian/carny eggs "split from hive from honey bee genitics"open mated
    6000'colorado..hives in yard ital/from R weaver and one feral hive "mutts" she has a full brood nest not one missed cell. Started laying i fourth comb last week..been helping with food gave half deep frame of honey caped there working on it..Bees starting to hatch 6 at a time that i can see from one side also bee population is increasing rapid now..enjoyable and learning so much..

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Winsted, CT, USA
    Posts
    76

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Should be a good thread. 1 3/4 works for me fine however must be sure that the frames are centered.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    addison,maine,USA
    Posts
    114

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Second Question;
    How to deal with overcrowding in a 4 frame OH?

    My queen in 4 frame OH filled all frames with brood. Now there's to many bees and to little stores. I'm thinking about putting an excluder in #2 OH to create a better balance? Managing a small indoor OH is a new ball game. Ideas??

    Mark

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Winsted, CT, USA
    Posts
    76

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Give a frame of bees to another colony from the OH and perhaps steal a bit of whatever is needed back for the donor OH. This year my bees made no honey so I have been feeding the OH constantly. Had I given them more food and pollen they may have been busting at the seams also.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    Suffolk NY
    Posts
    200

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross View Post
    1.5" to 1.75". Go toward the low end if you are small cell.
    I built mine spot on to 1.5 inches. I squished quite a bit of comb closing it up, but the bees made it all good within a few days. I have very little burring on the glass with this spacing.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    addison,maine,USA
    Posts
    114

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    OK OH designers; so far the consensus on ID is 1 to 1 .
    Assuming were shooting for; little or no burr on glass; no double layering of bees; and allowing for circumstantial variables i.e. adding frames from outside colonies, Im going with 1 11/16
    Next Question; Glass? Tempered?, dbl. strength?, One way?, Plastic? What? Considering safety of the public.
    Mark

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,384

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    If the bees in the observation hive are drawing all their comb 1 1/2" works great. The problem is that instead you are often stealing frames from a regular hive to stock an observation hive or give it a boost, so it works better to go with 1 3/4". More tends to get burr. Less is hard to get the frames from a hive in as if they are the least bit irregular they won't fit.

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

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    addison,maine,USA
    Posts
    114

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Next Question:
    I'm thinking of adding a queen excluder to my next observation hive (ObH) to help manage a good balance between stores and brood. In a 4 frame (deep frames) I'd put it between #3 and 4 thus 3 frames of brood chamber 1 of stores?, it goes without saying I'll be feeding them thru the Maine Winter. Do excluders really work or are they problematic, or should I let the bees work out their own balance. Right now I've got overcrowding, letting them do their own management. Is it worth it to incorperate an excluder in the ObH design?
    Mark

    ----------------------------------
    "When I get to where I know what I'm doing........it ain't any fun anymore"

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,384

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    I only saw the concept when the Ulster hives came out. Then it was not a full time observation hive, but just a way to get the queen and brood where people could observe while having enough bees that they can easily cool and care for the hive under the stressful conditions of an exhibit.

    I have never considered using one in an observation hive that runs year around. I think it could get difficult to manage and I'm not sure it will help. If you limit the queen too much they may just replace her figuring she's not doing her job. She will lay double and triple eggs in the cells. etc.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Knox County, Ohio
    Posts
    2,694

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    I believe the primary purpose of a queen excluder is to prevent the queen from laying in the honey supers, and to eliminate the time required to check each frame to make sure you are removing only frames of honey.

    With an observation hive, you can quickly see if a frame has brood or not. And you don't have frames in supers, so there is no time savings for not having to pull frames to check them for brood.

    The only use I can think of for a queen excluder in an observation hive would be at the entrance as a queen includer to prevent absconding if you put small swarms in the hive.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    addison,maine,USA
    Posts
    114

    Default Re: Observation Hive (ObH) Enthusiasts'

    Ive gotta transfer an 8 frame deep, with a lot of brood and a lot of bees, into my new 5 frame deep ObH (observation hive). I can discard some comb but can I pack extra bees into the 5 frames?
    Help,
    Mark

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Location
    Greenville, TX, USA
    Posts
    4,397

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    collbran, co
    Posts
    546

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    now were talking about observation hive not the toys they sell.. http://i948.photobucket.com/albums/a...o/100_0459.jpg http://i948.photobucket.com/albums/a...100_0307-1.jpg just kidden
    Last edited by franktrujillo; 10-04-2009 at 09:36 AM. Reason: pic wouldn't show

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    collbran, co
    Posts
    546

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    The dimensions are 4 comb frames deep so bees can control temps better length 4' by 33" wide 3 exits on back the bottom frame space is for feeder frames.back on hinded door keeping and wintering over.nice ob hive

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,758

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Just wondering what the consensus is for introducing pollen into an OH. The only way I know how to is to crack it open and put it above the bottom frame of brood. Does anyone know a simpler method? Introducing through the sugar feeder?

    Does anyone know where to get an entrance queen excluder? Or how to build one?

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Findlay, Ohio
    Posts
    323

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    There is a lot I do not know about your objective for building an observation hive or were you are in OH (I am in Findlay). My favoriate supply source is "Queen Right" in Spencer, OH (S & W of the greater Akron area, close to Medina/Lodi). They have a web site.
    Anyway; Dansel built an observation "hive" out of an OLD double pane window frame, boxed in with OLD barn siding with hinged outter doors. This thing must be 2 1/2' X 4' and afixed to the outter wall of their sales/display operation. Don't know any particulars, but if in that area, give them a visit.
    Very knowedgeable, very frendly, very competive pricing & hot dip woodware.
    Just my 2cents worth.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Winsted, CT, USA
    Posts
    76

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Quote Originally Posted by Specialkayme View Post
    Just wondering what the consensus is for introducing pollen into an OH. The only way I know how to is to crack it open and put it above the bottom frame of brood. Does anyone know a simpler method? Introducing through the sugar feeder?

    Does anyone know where to get an entrance queen excluder? Or how to build one?
    Good luck with your OH. If you have a place to feed sugar water to your OH you could introduce pollen there. I have done it in the spring. It would not be recommended this time of year however since it encourages brood rearing.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Location
    Cass County, MO
    Posts
    448

    Default Re: Observation Hive (OH) Enthusiasts'

    Quote Originally Posted by Specialkayme View Post
    Just wondering what the consensus is for introducing pollen into an OH. The only way I know how to is to crack it open and put it above the bottom frame of brood. Does anyone know a simpler method? Introducing through the sugar feeder?
    I have not tried it in this type of set up but I can't see why it would not work.

    Mega Bee can be fed in a liquid!!!! Click for LINK

    Like most I have been dreaming up a hive to build. Here is my doodle for a hive that would mount on a outside wall and it has a Mega Bee feeder, as well as a syrup feeder. Maybe a small jar type as I don't think it would take that much to give them a boost. They also suggest you feed light syrup when giving them MegaBee.


    Just a thought.

    RKR
    ______
    Last edited by rkr; 10-29-2009 at 10:19 PM. Reason: pic
    4 seasons 19 Hives-Camp Branch Bee Ranch. Est 2009
    "I am a nobody; nobody is perfect, and therefore I am perfect."

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