Main menu


Maintenance of the hive and the apiary

A well-made beehive should last 10 to 20 years or more. Investing in mediocre hives is a miscalculation, and it is more economical in the long run to pay more for quality material. The lifespan of the hive is further extended by regular maintenance. The exterior should be protected with paint, polyurethane coating, or wood preservative (for example plain creosote, no insecticidal additives). If the beehives are made of a perishable material, such as banana fiber, they will last much longer if they are protected from sun and rain.

Hives should be inspected and rehabilitated whenever they are unoccupied. If an occupied hive needs repair, the bees can be temporarily transferred to an empty hive.
Good quality hive
Good quality hive

It is important to keep the ground clear around the hives, cutting weeds and hanging branches. This helps to provide the bees with a well-opened flight path, to restrict pest attacks and to prevent excess humidity in the hives during rainy weather. It is not recommended to leave old combs lying around, as they attract predators and can spread disease.

Dry plants must also be removed, a small spark can cause fire which devastate the entire apiary.

burnt apiary
Burnt apiary

burnt apiary
In Summer, the risk of fire is high

As you can see in the picture below, the hives are placed on the ground without stands, so the colonies are more exposed to intruders and to soil moisture.
The right thing to do is put beehive on stands and place empty cans filled with oil to keep insects from climbing (insects proof stand).

Also, the apiary must be established in a non-floodable place. In winter, the risk of flooding is very probable, a few millimetres more can create a disaster.