Tuesday, July 17, 2007

The Research II: Top Bar Hive

I am really intrigued with what I've been reading about the Top Bar Hive (TBH) and am pondering how best to include this in my upcoming "game plan". Yes, I admit, part of my attraction to this hive design is its "exoticness" and uniqueness, but I think I am mostly attracted to it because it seems less intrusive and disruptive to the bees and this means less stress. Allowing the bees more leeway in the drawing of comb makes them more co-managers of the apiary with me as well. My step-son is also excited about the possibility of building me one. In all, it seems much more in keeping with my values of sustainability.

My real dilemma is at what point in my beekeeping journey does a TBH become a part? I am leaning toward beginning with a conventional hive like I discussed earlier in my "game plan" post and then adding a TBH in two years when I divide my original hive. Any thoughts about this from experienced beekeepers?

For any of you who are as inexperienced concerning TBHs as I am, should check out the many wonderful websites on this hive design. A good place to begin might be The Sustainable Beekeeping Project. This website contains a wealth of information on TBHs, plans for its construction, and links to other TBH sites on the web.

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