Homesteading and Livestock

Self-reliance and sustainability in the 21st century.

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Top Bar Hive Experiment

4/18/2012 10:22:49 AM

Tags: bee keeping, Warre, Top Bar Hive, chickens, Brix, biodynamics, plant secondary metabolites, non medicated chicken feed, ACRES USA conference, external frame backpack, diy poultry waterer, Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton

Using a Top Bar hive for the first time and carrying in 50 pound bags of chicken feed on a backpack

We've been researching alternative bee keeping strategies since we lost two of our traditional Langstroth hives last year. There's a lot of information to sift through out there, but after careful consideration we've decided to do a side by side comparison between the two more popular alternatives, Top Bar and Warre. We got our Top Bar hive from, which seems to have the most affordable prices. 

Anna has a fascinating series of posts on the 2011 ACRES USA conference. She does a great job at winnowing the wheat from the chaff on a variety of subjects that got covered including Brix, Biodynamics, and Plant Secondary Metabolites.

I posted last week about our quest to find non-medicated chicken feed, but what I left out was the problem we've been having with the driveway. It's too wet to get our truck back to the barn, so we've been packing in supplies. A 50 pound bag of chicken feed is an awkward load, especially if you need to carry it over uneven ground and a couple of creeks. Our current solution was to modify an old external frame backpack so it can handle the extra space. It's working out good, but I've only done one trip so far.

Mark Hamilton and Anna Hess have been sharing the joy of modern day homesteading for over 6 years at their homesteading blog. They manage to maintain this simple lifestyle by building and selling a superior poultry waterer that is 10 times cleaner than the traditional ones you can find at the feed store.  


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