Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 24
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Alexandria, VA
    Posts
    370

    Default How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Sorry if this is a major debate and I just sparked another bonfire....but I haven't seen any posts on this particular yet.

    I thought the major benefits to TBHs were 1) calmer bees, because you don't expose more than 1 bar at a time, but Warre hives don't appear to have this feature, since the bees have to be able to travel vertically. 2) With horizontal TBHs, you don't have to lift anything.

    Besides providing insulation at the top (which you could do with an extra super on a Lang) and putting new boxes under the old (which you could also do with a Lang), how is a Warre different from using foundationless bars (with or without a frame, I'm not sure the bees care) in a Lang hive?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Cookeville, TN, USA
    Posts
    4,016

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    The shape of it for one thing. The hive space is more or less 12 inches square so the winter cluster doesn't have to move back and forth to utilize the stores.

  3. #3

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    As you already mentioned, Warre hives have a quilt box. you could make a quilt box for a Lang, but that is not how they were traditionally designed.

    Warre boxes are much smaller than Lang boxes. and they are intended to be nadired (placed below the stack) rather than supered (placed on top of the stack).

    Abbe Warre did tell in his book that he provided directions to build frames for use in the hives or it could be used with just top bars. He personally preferred using only top bars as he did not recommend moving the hives as a migratory pollinator now would move hives. He feels that using top bars gives the bees the maximum capacity or space to draw comb out as they will. With frames, they have less space to draw comb.

    The biggest idea of Warre hives is that one is encouraged to take a minimalist intervention approach and not open the hive unless it is for specific purposes, such as preparing in the Spring, harvesting in the Fall or rectifying some major problem throughout the season as based on exterior observations. (H Storch's book "At the Hive Entrance" is a very good companion to making such determinations based on external observations)

    Abbe Emile Warre intended the hive to be used by the 'average" person who did not want to or was able to tend to bees on a daily or fairly consistent basis. It is designed to achieve a large honey harvest with minimal opening or "working" of the hive. Much of his explanation in his book for the methodology is based very much on biological behaviors, traits and similarities to 'natural hive" activities much as possible.

    Some have described it as akin to robbing a hive in a tree, made easy.

    Essentially, the bees live in the boxes much as they would un interrupted in a tree hive and because the boxes have removable top bars and are separate boxes themselves, it is that much easier to harvest honey. The harvester need only take those boxes of honey that are only honey and leave boxes on the hive that are mixture of honey and brood.

    (this usually leaves 2 to 3 boxes on the hive over the winter in which they continue to work down into the bottom box and backfill the top box(es) to live off during winter.)

    Big Bear
    No, I am NOT a bee "Keeper". Anything I post is just my opinion. Take it easy and think for yourself.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Alexandria, VA
    Posts
    370

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Hm...interesting. Thanks for the info!

    I'll have to add one of these to my list of types of hives to build. Any favorite designs out there, or is there pretty much just one?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Dripping Springs, TX USA
    Posts
    296

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Thanks Big Bear. Very good historical information for us all!!! I like thoughts here.

  6. #6

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    well, the design is pretty basic but does allow some "tweaking'" which experimentalists will inevitably pursue.

    the actual dimensions of the hive are very specific in his book, but, I know of many designs which modify them to reflect modern consumer dimensional lumber.

    Abbe Warre in his book, described two types of roofs or tops and I have seen a variety of other designs which are meant to accomplish the same protection and ventilation as his original designs with modern appearances.

    I have seen many modify the floor of the hive to a screened IPM bottom similar to many current designs.

    The number of top bars and spaces between them will likely play a major role in determining inside box dimensions if you choose to deviate from his original plans.


    Daddy's Bees, thank you. Warre's hive and methods are one of many out there I personally use and have studied extensively. I don't beleive in withholding information about different beekeeping methods, hives and approaches as every beekeepers personal and unique situations and circumstances will dictate what works best for them individually.

    The more information people have, the better they are able to make an educated decision for themselves.

    Big Bear
    No, I am NOT a bee "Keeper". Anything I post is just my opinion. Take it easy and think for yourself.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Bonn, Germany
    Posts
    120

    Smile Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tara View Post
    ... Any favorite designs out there, or is there pretty much just one?

    I have found a film from Japan you may like:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IZldn...eature=related

    There are more nice films from the Youtube member mituro36.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    nelsonville, ohio
    Posts
    383

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    i run a quilt box on my foundationless lang. havent wintered with it yet but it does appear to help them cap honey faster wich would suggest moisture removal

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,325

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    sjj,
    Excellent youtube video of traditional Japanese beekeeping. It seems that the youtube video from Japan, shows a hive very similar to a Warre hive. But, of course, they are running Apis cerana.

    It seems like a Warre, but without the top bars. The youtube video did give the impression that it was much more work than a traditional Langstroth style hive.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,925

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    The nearest Lang version that would be similar to a Warre' would be eight frame boxes with foundationless frames... or just top bars in eight frame boxes. Of course you can build a quilt box. Of course you can add boxes underneath...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    5,929

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Hey thanks for the movie link SJJ!

    Does look like those guys are having fun!

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Totnes, Devon, England
    Posts
    1,019

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    I think the problem with running any other big-box hive as a Warré is that the bees will have little or no incentive to move downwards when they have adequate space on one level.

    The real trick of the Warré hive is having a box just the right size to be too small - if that makes sense - which forces the bees to expand downwards as if they were in a hollow tree. If you give them a bigger box, they will fill it first sideways before they build downwards, so you will never get full boxes of honey over the brood nest.

    My attempts at running Warrés have not been especially successful, and I suspect that even the 12 x 12 x 8 box may be too large for some colonies, which is why I have been working on a modification - more on that later.

    The only real disadvantage of the vertical TBH over the horizontal is that you are still stuck with lifting some heavy weights, and I don't think that building your own fork lift truck to do the heavy work is entirely withing the capacity of the average home hive-builder.


    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Alexandria, VA
    Posts
    370

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Yeah... how much does a stack-O-Warre weigh anyways? I won't be saving my back any by switching to Warre when I have to lift 5x 20lb boxes all at once, vs 1x40lb box. Do you guys have some cool technique for nadiring?

    Also, if the bees start up top and move down as they build comb, won't all your honeycomb have cocoons in it, since the bees would move the brood nest down and backfill with honey?

  14. #14

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    In the spring, you only have maybe 2 or 3 (probably 2) boxes of brood mixed with honey. based on 'standard" warre dimensions and 8 bars, you could expect those boxes to weigh maybe 10 to 20 pounds apiece, depending on how much honey the bees have left from over winter.

    to pick those up and slip 2 or 3 empty boxes underneath isn't all too bad really.

    in the late summer/fall at harvest, the boxes full of honey same specs look like 40 to 50 pounds. each.

    You take these off the top of the stack one at a time, working your way down to the 2 bottom winter boxes or those that have both brood and honey in them.

    you can extract the honey if you use a basket in your extractor and the honey will bee fine. there is no problem at all if you crush and strain.


    Abbe Warre's advice to solve the lifting issue was to always have a bee buddy.
    Big Bear
    No, I am NOT a bee "Keeper". Anything I post is just my opinion. Take it easy and think for yourself.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Alexandria, VA
    Posts
    370

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Ah... thanks BigBear!

    Lol..."bee buddy". Probably would make life easier!

    I really, really like chowing on honeycomb--I'd probably have to keep a few horizontal TBHs around for that!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Totnes, Devon, England
    Posts
    1,019

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tara View Post
    Also, if the bees start up top and move down as they build comb, won't all your honeycomb have cocoons in it, since the bees would move the brood nest down and backfill with honey?
    Tara - you have just identified the other significant issue with Warré's way of doing things: honey in brood comb.

    There has been a lot of discussion about this elsewhere, but it comes down to the question of - will you tolerate some bee-poo in your honey?

    Needless to say opinions differ, but personally I have to say that I prefer my honey served in the comb, and for that comb to look, smell and taste clean. Certainly you would have difficulty selling comb honey in brood comb - it would look dark and uninviting - and extracting it by pressing or mash-and-strain would most likely result in cloudy or even muddy-looking honey, unless you passed it through a very fine filter under heat and pressure, which rather defeats the goal of pure, untreated, natural honey.

    I'm not saying there is no possible solution to this, or even that it is a significant problem for the home-scale beekeeper, but nevertheless it cannot be brushed under the carpet as a non-issue in these days of food inspectors and litigious customers.
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    637

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Buckbee,

    I won't disagree with you when it comes to beautiful comb honey coming from horizontal hives, however, I certainly disagree in regard to crushing and straining from Warre hives. I just harvested over 100lbs from three of my Warre hives, crushed and strained using a fruit press and a 600 micron filter into a couple buckets and the quality/clarity of this honey is just as high as that from my horizontal top bar hives, or even my Langstroth. I don't heat or use pressure (other than gravity!), and I have no issues with cloudiness or "muddy-looking" honey.

    Cheers,
    Matt

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Totnes, Devon, England
    Posts
    1,019

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Thanks Matt - I stand corrected!

    I am glad this is possible, as it makes the Warré more of a contender for the sidleliner, at least.

    How do you deal with the lifting issues?
    The Barefoot Beekeeper http://www.biobees.com

  19. #19

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    bee poo?

    by and large bees don't "poo" inside the hive. and when and if there is , there is a major bee health problem causing it.

    bees actively clean out the hive of things like "poo" , dead bees, paper, even dry sugar, all the time.

    proper straining of honey from comb that has had brood in it previously, in my experience, leaves nothing behind to diminish the quality of the honey.

    Now, your example of eating/selling cut comb honey, there I can see an issue.

    but then, I use my ktbh's for that. nice, clean comb.

    Big Bear
    No, I am NOT a bee "Keeper". Anything I post is just my opinion. Take it easy and think for yourself.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    637

    Default Re: How is a Warre functionally any different than a foundationless Lang?

    Phil/Buckbee,

    When it comes to lifting, if I can safely lift the boxes myself I will do so without separating them. If I've got more than I can safely lift (usually 3 or more), then I will quickly separate the boxes, but I usually leave the roof/quilt box on top so as to not unnecessarily disturb the bees and their "nest scent." I'll stack the boxes, add an empty box or two, then replace the boxes I've removed.

    I'm hoping to have a lift one of these days!

    Matt

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads