In Portland, Oregon, mayor Sam Adams proclaimed the week of September 17-23, “Honey Bee Week”, and encouraged all residents to observe this new event to honor the important role of honeybees in agriculture. The mayor’s pronouncement was spurred on by the first world release of a new documentary film, Queen of the Sun, by local film director Taggart Siegel.
The documentary looks at how the honey bees are used in commercial agriculture, and their critical importance as pollinator’s responsible for many of the fruits, nuts, and common vegetables that make up our human diet. The film also shares the viewpoints of various experts about the honeybees mysterious decline in recent years, attributed at least in part, to the poorly understood syndrome, Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD).
Bee Thinking Honeybee Hives
In turn, this documentary became the impetus to launch the first ever “Tour De Hive” neighborhood tour, a spinoff of the city’s popular Tour de Coop that provided public tours of urban chicken coops. Similarly, the Tour de Hive offers for those who wish to participate in this free event, the opportunity to see working bee hives in a cluster of Portland neighborhoods, and to ask questions of their hosts to learn more about the bees, and urban beekeeping opportunities.
In this video, one such expert, Matthew Reed, who offers a range of beekeeping services, and products on his website Bee Thinking, shares his intimate knowledge of bee hives, and how he first became interested in honeybees. From his own backyard, he explains the different styles of hives that he uses (and has built himself), and some of the relative advantages, and disadvantages of each. Included in the video are examples of the following nontraditional style foundation-less hives: Horizontal top bar, Warre and Langstroth hives.