Bee Hive

Bee Hive

    L.L. Langstroth discovered the principle of bee space in 1851 in the U.S.A. This space permits free passage for worker bees and is too small to build a comb by bees or too large for depositing bee glue i.e. propolis. We can say that bee space is optimum distance between two surfaces in a bee hive essential for normal movement and functioning of bees. This principle was a big discovery for modern beekeeping. The modern hive has been designed on the bases of principle of bee space in which frames can be easily moved. The bee space measures 9.52 mm for A. mellifera and this was modified for A. cerana to be between 7 and 9 mm. Different parts of a movable frame bee hive are shown in Fig. 6.1.

    Figure 6.1 Parts of a movable frame hive

    Figure 6.2. a) BIS type (B) hive for Apis cerana. b) BIS type (C) hive for Apis mellifera
    Stand: To support bottom board.
    Bottom board: It is floor of the hive having an entrance for bees. On this board brood chamber rests.
    Brood chamber: Chamber used for rearing of brood. Frames are placed in this chamber on which bees raise combs. The dimensions and number of frames vary with the type of hive. A wooden dummy board is used to limit the size of brood chamber and is placed at the end of brood frames.
    Frame: Each frame consists of a top bar, two side and a bottom bar. Inner aspect of the top bar has a groove for fixing comb foundation sheet. Side bar has 4 holes for wiring the frame. The frame holds a comb.
    Dimensions of hive: In general for A. mellifera we use Langstroth hive (named after L.L. Langstroth) and for A. cerana, BIS (Bureau of Indian Standard) hive A and B type. In 1995, BIS introduced C-type hive based on Langstroth hive, for A. melifera. Well seasoned wood of “Kail, “Toon”, teak or rubber can be used for making good quality bee hives. Wood having strong smell is not used. Dimensions of different types of bee hives being used in India are given below:
    Table: Dimensions of bee hives
    Hive parameters BIS hive C type for A. mellifera
    (Langstroth type; Fig. 6.2b))
    BIS hive A & B type for A. cerana
    (Modified Newton and Jeolikote types; Fig. 6.2a)
    Frames Contains 10 frames May contain 4, 8 or 10 frames
    Super Chamber Generally full super chamber is used. Half (shallow) super chamber is generally used.
    frame size
    Outside 448x232mm

    Inside 428x192mm

    Type A: Modified Newton Type

    Outside 230x165mm

    Inside 210x145mm

    Type B: Modified Jeolikote Type

    Outside 300x195mm

    Inside 280x175mm

    Bee space 10 mm

    Type A -7 to 9 mm

    Type B -8 or 9 mm

    Super: Dimensions may be same as that of brood chamber or half of it (depending on type of bee hive). This is the chamber where bees store surplus honey.
    Inner cover: A board which acts as a partition between brood/super chamber and the roof .
    Top cover: A type of lid acting as roof placed over inner cover.

Last modified: Friday, 20 July 2012, 6:52 AM