The Flow Hive has gotten a lot of attention since the developers produced a crowd funding initiative, raising $13,247,863 by April 20, 2015, from 38,458 “backers.” What are we to conclude from this honey bee hive that now costs $699 plus $49 shipping? There hasn’t been a lot of buzz about it recently, although the program was extended through August of 2016.
Contributor Jim Fischer of Fischer’s Bee-Quick® and the Nectar-Detector®, who created the Wall of Shame, a satirical expose of food companies that print ‘Honey” in large print on their label, but put almost no actual product in the box, as revealed in their ingredients lists, takes a look at the “Flow Hive Brood Check,” concluding on the Bee-L Discussion list February 7, 2016, “They blow it right off the bat.” Read his running commentary about this video:
At 50 seconds, the young lady says “How long has it been since we peeked
inside? It’s been a… couple months now?” The Flow Hive fellow replies “Yeah…
At 3 minutes, the fellow pulls out one of the Flow frames, and says “So
this one did have a bit of burr comb because we had the other combs beside
it,” admitting that there is a basic bee space issue when mixing frames in
the same box.
At the start, the young lady asks if she is being a “responsible beekeeper”
by approaching a hive without gloves.
Not sure what to make of that statement, nor am I sure what to make of the
Flow Hive “expert” working a hive in gloves, when it is not one of 50 to
work that day, AND in gloves that are clearly far too large for him.
The gloves alone make one wonder how long have these people have _actually_
been keeping bees.
Starting at 7:20, it gets very surreal:
a) A smoker is puffed, although it has clearly gone out. Perhaps time was
short, and they did not want to stop and light the smoker to reshoot.
b) Bees on the outside surface of the hive are brushed with a glove up onto
the top bars and edges where a queen excluder will soon be placed, rather
than being left alone to reenter the hive themselves.
c) Then the smoker is again used, despite still being out, apparently to
“smoke” bees off the edges of the box where the queen excluder is about to
go… should we take up a collection to buy the poor fellow a brush?
d) But after all that prep, the queen excluder is slapped on without
clearing bees out of the way, you can see it being used to shove bees of the
top surface of the box closest to the camera.
e) Then the honey super is replaced, and the frames of honey are then
returned to the box – but wait a sec – open frames of honey were left just
sitting there exposed for the entire inspection?
f) At 7:40, a bunch of LEAVES is being used as a “brush”. Yes, the poor
fellow cannot afford a brush. Perhaps another kickstarter fundraising
project is in order here…
g) But at least someone re-lit the smoker!
So, I’ll ask again – how much beekeeping have these Flow hive guys REALLY
Thanks to Jim for his efforts. Meanwhile we all wait for further confirmation that the Flow Hive is truly at the end of every beekeeper’s rainbow.