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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Location
    John Day River, OR
    Posts
    34

    Default Adventures in Observation Hives

    Hey folks, Seeing Chas10's pictures and then jfb58's questions about spotting varroa mites made me want to share my own experiences.
    We've been running observation hives a few years now and I love them. My first one (with the attached photos) I built from a couple of old windows that just happened to be 20 inches and some 2x4. It is two frames wide and does not conform to bee space, which has been pretty fun. It is 2 deeps and a western tall, and I have a little two frame wide super that we can add on. She lives in the kitchen with access out the kitchen window. At this point we run a few observation hives. We've got a hexagon aquarium set up in the shop with top bars, we've got a two frame hive we set up in the summer with various experiments, take to schools and fair, and I have glass to build a few more. Love em.
    We set this one up a few years ago as an "egg nuc," just three frames of brood and some extra shakes, and have watched them raise queens, grow, and shrink the last couple years. We have gotten to see it swarm from inside and out, a couple of times. This last fall they had pretty high mite loads. The queen really shut down for a while, resuming brood rearing late in the fall. She dwindled down to only a couple of frames this winter but at this point has bounced back really fast is full up on brood and bees, and I added the super a couple days ago.
    Anyway, here are some photos from last summer. The queen layed out the burr comb on the glass with drones. We got to see mites crawling around, we got to see nurses pick out infected pupa, we got to see them metamorphose, overall one of the coolest things I have seen.
    DSC_1267.jpgDSC_1198.JPGDSC_1244.jpgDSC_1285.jpgDSC_1303.jpgDSC_1272.jpgDSC_1348.jpg

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Delhi, New York, USA
    Posts
    442

    Default Re: Adventures in Observation Hives

    That is way cool.
    Bee Thankful Raw Honey
    Proverbs 16:24 Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Casey, Il, USA
    Posts
    1,749

    Default Re: Adventures in Observation Hives

    that TOTALLY makes me want to make one without proper bee space.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Lee\'s Summit, MO
    Posts
    1,446

    Default Re: Adventures in Observation Hives

    That is pretty cool thanks for posting the pics.
    Ninja, is not in the dictionary. Well played Ninja's, well played...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    48,159

    Default Re: Adventures in Observation Hives

    Nice pictures. I enjoyed one without good beespace for those kind of views. But eventually I got tired of cleaning off the glass or not being able to find the queen... The draper I have was about 2 1/4" between the glass and it has similar views of larvae developing. I narrowed it to 1 3/4" eventually.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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