OUR APIARIES

Our bees are kept on two organically certified farms in North Bedfordshire.

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OUR HIVES

There are a large number of different types of hive a bee keeper can have.

These are the hives I use.

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 NATIONAL BEE HIVE

The most common type of bee hive and most of my hives are Nationals.

The large box at the bottom is the brood box where the queen is.

The smaller box[es] on top of the brood box are called 'supers' and this is where the bees make the honey we extract.

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WARRE HIVE

This hive was designed by a French priest Emile Warre

He studied hundreds of different hive styles and settled on this one as the most ideal for bees and beekeeper. His design focused on simplicity, ease of management, and mimicry of honeybees’ ideal natural environment. This hive is a vertically stacking top bar hive.

Like the Top Bar Hive, I do not extract honey from this hive.

 

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TOP BAR HIVE

This type of hive is often used in Africa.

They have become more popular as they mimic a hollowed out fallen tree and are therefore considered to be more 'natural' for bees than hives like the National.

It can be more problematic extracting honey from hives like this but they are easier to use for bee keepers who may have back problems and find lifting heavy hives like the National difficult,

I do not extract any honey from my Top Bar Hive.

 

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SKEP

This hive was designed by a French priest Emile Warre

He studied hundreds of different hive styles and settled on this one as the most ideal for bees and beekeeper. His design focused on simplicity, ease of management, and mimicry of honeybees’ ideal natural environment. This hive is a vertically stacking top bar hive.

Like the Top Bar Hive, I do not extract honey from this hive.

 

OUR BEES

There are 8 species of honey bee, the best known being the Western European honey bee apis mellifera. There was a specie of honey bee native to this country apis mellifera mellifera, but they were virtually wiped out by a disease called the Isle of Wight disease in the 1950's.

Queens were imported from abroad and as these has crossbred, the bees we have now are sometimes referred to as 'British mongrels'.

However, there are a few isolated places where the original 'British Black Bee' still survives.

HOW WE EXTRACT OUR HONEY

I have done 2 blogs about how we extract the honey. Click the buttons to watch the videos

How we extract our honey - part 1

How we extract our honey - part 2

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