Flow beehives

Flow beehive: An alternative honey harvesting method

Flow hive is a type of hive invented in Australia. The hive is a beehive type that enables honey extraction without opening the hive. When the system put in place extracts the honey, the bees are not disturbed. The hive is highly revered because of its simplicity and ease of use. Without having to open the hive, or bringing out the frames with the combs, or placing each of the frames in an extractor, honey can be easily extracted with just a push of a button.

Parts of the flow hive

The frame

The frame in the flow hive is a plastic honeycomb lattice layout with vertical gaps. The honeycomb lattice is partially formed for bees to fill in the gaps with beeswax and honey in the cell. When the extracting mechanism is engaged, the frames' plastic part turns to direct the honey towards a hole that serves as a tap. The flow hive uses a food certified plastic in the frames and the holes that transport the honey fluid out.

Benefits of the flow hive

The culture of ease and simplicity brought about this design of beehive. Flow hive helps large scale beekeepers to harvest honey with reduced effort and time. Bee farms with easy flow beehive spend less on labor and other related expenses. Common supplies required, such as using bee smokers (and many more), are not expensive since the flow beehive doesn't require frequent opening. The use of flow hive frames is not limited to large scale farmers alone; backyard or small-scale beekeepers also use it; it makes honey-making simple for everyone. The simplicity of the beehive honey tap doesn't interfere with the activities of bees. The bees can carry out their activities smoothly and undisturbed. What is more, honey can be harvested in batches using small jars.

Criticism on Flow hive

Despite the thousands of beekeepers using the flow hive, many criticize the technology for a few reasons. These criticisms to be considered are not based on any scientific research. Most are just opinions of some beekeepers who have objections based on personal preferences.

The use of plastic combs

The criticism of some is based on the use of plastic combs. Many feel the use of artificial plastic can affect the hormonal interaction of bees being an artificial material. However, this assertion is merely an opinion that is not backed by scientific research so far. Moreover, there were beehive types with plastic foundations in use before the flow hive was invented.

Encourages neglecting the maintenance of bees

The advertisement of honey flow beehive describes it as a honey tap. Many beekeepers who saw the advert interpreted it as a method that encourages neglecting bees; to check for diseases and more. However, the founders addressed this by explaining that the traditional act of giving attention to bees should remain while the flow functions to ease the process of honey extraction.

The take away

Overall, the flow hive is an excellent honey extractor with a simple mechanism. It's a wonderful tool for large-scale and small-scale beekeepers. As pointed out by the manufacturers, the flow hive's use should not affect the regular attention bees get.

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