I bought these second hand and it's been a learning curve but I really do like them... There are a couple of issues that are annoying but I have sorted out for the most part.
The supers are not positive enough in placement and I found I needed a ratchet strap around them horizontally to avoid and gaps between them. I'm sure this would be an easy design fix.
Also a removable/adjustable mesh floor so you could use various size frames and could clear out dead Bees would be helpful
A centre bar holding the legs together at the bottom would be comforting especially when 8 supers are loaded up...
My bees seemed to winter better in the Beehaus than my Nationals using less resources and being stronger colonies in the spring.
I would recommend these but just be aware they are different and will take a little adjusting to when splitting, and combining and when adding a swarm.
Omlet Says: Hi Chris! Thanks so much for taking the time to leave such an in depth review.
Customer feedback is extremely helpful to us as we are always looking for ways to improve our products. I will pass your comments onto our product design team for future reference.
Have it all put together but no bees coming until next summer so cannot review performance. Looks like it will do the job! I really like the minimal plastic packing, all the cardboard went straight into use as mulch on the garden.
Received the beehaus some time last year, immediately assembled it and the frames. I also played around with it before the bees went in just to ensure i know what everything is and of course I made sure I can operate it.Unfortunately you only know how the bees deal with it once the bees are in. Unfortunately the bees are exploiting all the gaps the beehive has. Most notably the gap between the Green sides and the Grey entrances. I put weatherstrip in there when all the bees were inside (evening) and that's at least solved. The other issue is that the supers don't seem to sit on the hive properly (silly little knobs to keep them in place) so I can see bees (and robbers) going in between the green sides and the grey supers. They also manage to get in where the bungy cord goes in the green lid! Although these things are resolvable and I will spread the weather foam/tape everywhere, I wish I knew this when the hive was empty. At the price I feel that the weatherstrip I'm putting on now should either be supplied or already on the product. Anyway my Nuc arrived and they are currently doing well and they seem to be doing very well. Lets hope the rest of the season is stress free?
Very easy to set up. Very sturdy. Excellent delivery. Waiting for a swarm of bees to go inside. I would highly recommend this product. I only wish I knew about it sooner. It's great that you can either have a really large colony or two separate colonies.
I love my Beehaus - have kept bees in it successfully for 10 years and wanted to reassure you that you are buying 5* accomodation for your bees. They work less hard to heat the hive - survive winter beautifully without condensation problems and damp and now that I have hybrids are producing lots of honey too. Today I used one of the clearer boards overnight and had the most peaceful removals of a super of honey ever! Plus like most people I do not have time to commit to club - join association to get insurance please! Your manual has been my beekeeping bible and as they say I learnt everything from it! Well done Omlet - the hive looks as good as it did 10 years ago and it is still a joy to watch those fiery streaks rising into the sky on every sunny day. I am now Press Officer for the BBKA but this is a personal review. I would encourage every back challenged person wanting to keep bees to consider a Beehaus. I am 60 and want to go on beekeeping for as long as I can and this hive makes it possible.
The Beehouse got its bees this evening and it amazing.
The Haus itself came well packed and with sime easy to follow instructions. It was very easy to transport and put in place.
It is well designed and protects the bees from the elements.
Having received a replacement product we were dubious about our purchase. However we have been very pleased with our yellow beehause and the bees appear to love it too as they quickly expanded into the second side. The instruction manual has been extremely informative and a useful guide.
I really like the Beehaus. The height is good and I think it will be easy to use. We have yet to put bees in it for several reasons. The first being that it is too early in the season and it has been so cold to move bees.
Secondly...there were areas where we felt we could improve the insulation. Having read lots of discussion about the Beehaus and noted the sometimes derisory comments....we contacted other Beehaus owners. Some now only use theirs for storage...others have sold it on.....others commented knowledgeably about the faults and improvements that could easily be made.
So here is what we have done with our Beehaus.
We took out the linings plastic in the walls and inserted Sheepswool insulation....all along the walls. We were careful to reinstate the inner walls to ensure the seals maintained there integrity.
We cut queen excluders which fitted under two of the honey boxes...instead of one. This means there are fewer places where bees can get around the edges and therefore fewer places where the queen can get into the honey boxes. As we could see that the single queen excluders offered less than a perfect fit. In general..we don't use queen excluders in our other hives...which are all poly hives. The brood areas are given sufficient space to expand as needed. We are hoping this is true for the Beehaus...in that sideways expansion will negate the need for queen excluders. For this first season, though, we intend to use the exclude
We are investigating the value of filling the roof with foam insulation in regard to increased weight to lift it off.
Personally I like modern equipment..in general, it is easier to use and does a better job than traditional or old design. I also have an opportunity to have a Dartington wooden hive...so will run a comparison, which I know has been done before but everyone looks after their bees in different ways.
Of course, the price of the Beehaus is a drawback. This one is a gift...an indulgence. For most beekeepers...who want to make their own hives out of scrap wood.....well it is not for them.
We were also attracted because of our experience with the two chicken houses we have...a green cube and a purple eglu. These are proving to be good choices...our chicken are free range....they wintered well in them...and we live on an exposed hill.
I intend running an interference free Dartington and would very much like to run a Beehaus along the same lines...as comparison to colony survival. Sadly funds don't stretch atm and there are very few secondhand for sale either. Still....perhaps we might be lucky to find one for sale.
I hope this review is helpful to you
I kept bees 30 years ago in a WBC and I decided to restart this year with the beehaus. I liked the look and the concept of two in one or one large insulated hive. I was a little surprised as to how big it actual was and how heavy. The first hive that was sent was slightly 'out of true' and so the top boards would not stay in
place, but there was no quibble from omlet who replaced it immediately. The service was excellent, and I now await my nucleus, hopefully my bees will like it as much!
Recently bought the Beehaus and I am very pleased with my purchase. It was easy to put together and really well made. The instruction booklet that came with it provide really clear instructions and also gave brilliant advice on looking after the bees.