A honey bee’s home is called a “hive”, and many enterprising beekeepers choose to construct their own beekeeping hive.
If you are an absolute beginner though, it is probably best to purchase a hive rather than build your own.
For those who have woodworking skills or are feeling adventurous, just keep in mind that a bee hive should provide plenty of room for the queen bee to lay and store her many eggs. Also make certain that there is enough storage for a year’s supply of food.
What Type Of Hive Is Best?
Realizing that beekeeping is an activity increasingly being taken up by hobbyists, apiary supply manufacturers have made major improvements to hive designs over the years.
There are two major types: The Top Bar Hive (TBH) and the Langstroth Hive.
For beginners, the style of beehive most recommended is the Langstroth Hive.
The Langstroth Hive
The popularity of the Langstroth hive truly “buzzes” around the beginning hobbyist beekeeper.
Keep in mind that if you have acquired a beekeeping guide or manual, or enrolled in a beekeeping course, it is likely that the techniques you learn there are based on this style of hive.
Therefore, if you want to be able to effectively follow along your beekeeping guide or courses – it is best to invest first in Langstroth hives.
The Langstroth is a rectangle-shaped frame built to hold combs within it. Typically, 8-frame hives are lighter and easier to manage than other varieties.
Other Hive Designs
As has been discussed, a beginner will likely want to look at the Langstroth Hive first.
However, some beekeepers prefer the African top-bar hives (TBHs).
A TBH is a movable comb type of beehive. With this type, narrow bars of wood rest on top of a wooden box which will hold the nest. The honey bees build comb from the bars (with the bars themselves having enough width to provide adequate spacing between combs).
The upshot is that a TBH design will yield top quality comb honey. However, one downside is that this type of hive will yield less honey than other types.
The Bottom Line
Langstroth hives are considered “standards” for beekeeping, and beginners should keep things as simple as possible until more skill is acquired.
Since no honeycomb is created between the frames, and no honeycomb is attached to the beehive walls, Langstroth hives are easily moved and managed.
For a beginning beekeeping hive, the Langstroth should be considered first.
Want to learn more about why proper selection of a beekeeping hive is so important? Visit www.honeybeekeepers.com for more honey beekeeping tips for beginners.