It’s mind-boggling all the things that honey bees are doing to manage both the micro-climate and micro-ecology that they share with over 8,000 other known organisms inside their hive.
I am starting a company, called Bee Tree Hives™, that will design and build hive components – still using standard Langstroth frames – that allow honey bees to live much more like they do in the wild… giving them back the control that they need to more successfully manage the health of the micro-climate, and micro-ecology, of their hive.
One of those components is my insulated, ventilated inner cover that has six screened vent holes in strategic locations. The bees have taught me that they will propolise screened vent holes in order to control both the amount and the orientation of the air moving through their hive.
I checked several hives that I monitor in my valley today and, after less than two weeks in their new hives, virtually all of the colonies were propolising their screened vent holes in various degrees in various locations. Here are photos of three different vent holes from three different apiaries:
More info on Bee Tree Hives components will be coming this summer.