Protectabee™: An All-In-One Adjustable Hive Entrance
By: Erica Shelley , Tasmin Brown, Aparna Karthikeyan, Nicole Gauvreau, and Peter Kevan
What do Play-Doh, chocolate chip cookies, microwaves and penicillin all have in frequent? They had been all unintentionally invented whereas making an attempt to develop one thing else.
The Protectabee, the patent-pending adjustable hive entrance, will be added to that inspirational record (though we are going to admit it’s not chocolate chip cookie good!). We by no means supposed to make a multi-functional bee product. In actual fact, it wasn’t till we had been near the top of our two-year mission and testing with beekeepers that we understood the wide selection of purposes for the Protectabee.
On this month’s Bee Tradition article, “Bee Vectoring with the Protectabee,” we define the invention and useful testing of a tool for delivering powders right into a beehive with the last word long-term purpose of enhancing bee well being.
Integrating a brand new product into beekeeping requires greater than performance; it should even be straightforward to make use of. We posted on the Southern Ontario Beekeeper Fb group to recruit just a few beekeepers to check the Protectabee. To our shock, inside twenty-four hours, we had over 200 volunteers! Seventeen pastime, small scale and industrial beekeepers field-tested the Protectabee of their apiaries, answered follow-up questions on-line and in an interview (Determine 1).
Total, the beekeepers stated they’d seemingly buy the Protectabee and located it very straightforward to make use of (Determine 2). Because the Protectabee was constructed with the intention of bee vectoring, and powders should not at present bought, we had been shocked when a number of beekeepers requested to maintain the system after testing. The beekeepers discovered that the Protectabee decreased robbing by wasps and deterred skunks, amongst different benefits (Determine 3).
The Protectabee detachable insert design permits the beekeeper to slip the cone inserts in on both facet (Determine 4). Suggestions from a number of beekeepers was that further inserts may very well be designed to behave as robbing screens, entrance reducers, closing up the hive and trapping small hive beetles. In actual fact, we obtained so many suggestions for the Protectabee that we realized we had an all-in-one system that might go to market instantly earlier than bee vectoring powders had been out there.
At present, we have now designed 4 completely different inserts to be delivered with our first Protectabees to be bought in February 2022 on Indiegogo: Cones, strong, and two sizes of entrance reducers. Each inserts and the drawers will be eliminated to permit most bee visitors whereas leaving the casing on the hive (Determine 5).
A. The cone inserts (Determine 6) can be utilized for robbing prevention, and actually, comparable cones are used to entice wasps into soda pop bottles. With the cone inserts, the bees can simply defend their entrances. Powders may also be used with the cone configurations, and as powders are permitted for bee vectoring, they are going to be made out there to beekeepers.
B. Another choice with the cones is to show each cone inserts “in” to scale back outgoing visitors. This “double in” configuration would solely be used for a short while, however it may be useful for mowing or different actions close to a hive that may agitate the colony. It’s necessary to notice that the bees can go within the small finish of the cone, so not all outgoing visitors is blocked (Determine 7).
A. The Protectabee at present has two entrance reducers with the precise dimensions as these discovered on customary wood entrance reducers. The drawer solely must be slid out a small approach so as to add within the entrance reducer. The doorway reducer will be mixed with a strong insert for a single entrance, or two entrance reducers can be utilized on both facet for 2 smaller openings.
A. The strong inserts will be mixed with the doorway reducer. Pollen patties or dietary supplements may also be added to the drawer with out disturbing the colony.
B. Two strong inserts can be utilized to shut up the colony. This may be helpful for transferring or if pesticides are being sprayed close by.
The Protectabee is at present appropriate with 10-frame Langstroth and 7 body Circulate hives.
To observe our journey or be notified when the Protectabee is on the market for buy, please go to our web site at bestforbees.com.