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  • Greetings to any English speakers on the forum. My name is Jim and I am a beekeeper in central Indiana in the middle of the United States. I currently keep Warre hives and am intrigued by the Bienen Kisten hive design. According to the map on the website, there do not appear to be any beekeepers in the US using the hive at this time. I look forward to the development of additional resources in English and will check back periodically to see what is going on. Since I build my own hives now, it looks like it the Bienen Kisten hive would be easy to build (easier than a Warre!). I will continue watching for new information and perhaps 2016 will be the year for a Bienen Kisten hive in my apiary.

    Central Indiana
    United States
    • Welcome Jim!
      Kevin let translate a part of the website content in english once, did you find that?
      It`s really cool to see how the Bienen Kisten concept is spreading around the world!
      Tell us about your start in 2015 than!
      Greetings from Zurich, Switzerland
      • Bindi,
        Thank you for the welcome. Sorry about posting three copies of your message - I am still struggling with operating on a site where everything is in German! Are the Bienen Kisten the only hives you keep or do you have experience with other hive types as well? I found the pages Kevin translated and they have been helpful. I am looking forward to seeing more in the future. I would like to see a wider variety of hives in use here in the US.
        • Hi Jim, I have 3 Bienenkisten and one Dadant hive with natural combs.
          • jim schrieb am 24.12.2014, 05:48
            Thank you for the welcome. Sorry about posting three copies of your message
            [ Already taken care of -- Mod. ]

            Dear Jim,

            Thanks for posting. We don't get much English-language traffic here. The Bienenkiste is unique, I think, in that its target group is the "weekend beekeeper" who enjoys the experience of keeping bees and harvesting their honey, but doesn't want to (yet) get drawn into the "big hobby" aspects of extensive hive management, selling honey, etc. There's a saying (German, I think) that the honey is often the reason people start keeping bees, but just as often the reason that they stop.

            The other target group, of course, is the beekeeper looking for a more "natural" hive system -- though not to imply that other hive systems are unnatural. The intact hive (individual combs are almost never pulled) offers, again, a unique perspective in that the beekeeper gets a sense of the colony as a collective organism (the so-called "bien"); it's a nice complement, in my opinion, to traditional frame systems (which have the advantage of offering a close-up view of life in the comb).

            The Bienenkiste is very similar to what you would call a "fixed comb hive" and in some places in the States these are forbidden by long-standing regulation. Strictly speaking, the combs in the Bienenkiste are not fixed, as they can, in fact, be removed if inspection is required, but this is perhaps still a grey area -- as you pointed out, the hive is more or less unknown in your part of the world.

            There are plans in the works to improve the internationalization of the Bienenkiste Web site (including navigation, etc.) and expand the offerings of English-language materials, so do check back later this year.

            Best wishes and merry Christmas,

            Kevin (birthplace Sioux Falls, SD)
              Kevin M. Pfeiffer - Berlin (Mitglied, Imkerverein Kreuzberg e.V.) - Imkerbuch - Stockwaage - Visitenkarte