We developed the 7 frame bee hive by combining all the important elements from a 10 frame hive and a 5 frame nucleus hive. We use these hives on our honey farm and we were so impressed with them, we are now replacing all of our 10 frame equipment and here’s why:
First there’s the entrance: It is easier for the guard bees to control infiltration of pest and robbers because there is only an 1 1/8 entrance hole. The traditional hive has a 3/4 inch gap all the way across the front of the hive making it very difficult to guard.
Next there’s the natural shape: Bees prefer to live in a hollow tree in the woods with a small entrance and they like to work upwards and not sideways. Ever noticed how long it takes bees to draw out the outside frames in a 10 frame hive? The 7 frame hive is only 12″ in width, making it the perfect balance of comfort for the bees and stability for the beekeeper. The smaller size also reduces fatigue when handling hives or supers filled with honey. A built-in bottom board creates fewer parts to keep up with and gives the hive body strength and stability.
Over Wintering: The more natural size of the hive helps reduce loss of bees in the winter. Bees cluster in the center of the hive during the winter to create a source of heat, and because the hive is smaller it enables the bees to keep a comfortable temperature within the smaller space. It is much more difficult for bees to heat a large 10 frame hive.