BEEHIVE. An artificial habitation for bees, usually constructed of straw. This description of hive is so well known, that we shall only remark upon one or two essential points. First, care should be taken to have the hive made of clean and good straw, and of suitable thickness ; and, secondly, it should be well sheltered from cold winds, and rains, for if once the wet penetrates the hives, it affects the combs, and the bees getting a distaste for their home, will work slowly, and often desert it altogether. The culture of bees has, for some years past, been an object of much attention in this country, and numerous improve ments have taken place in the construction of the hives, by which the cruel practice of destroying the bees to obtain their honey is obviated, and the pro duce is very considerably increased by the management of the hives and their inmates. Amongst those who have turned their attention to this subject, Mr. Mott, of Moulton Chapel, Lincolnshire, stands distinguished for the improve ments he has introduced in the structure of beehives, and the management of the bees. The most essential part of his plan consists in regulating the heat of the hives by means of ventilation, so as to prevent the swarming of the bees ; at the same time obliging them to exchange a hive filled with honey for an empty one placed by the side of it. The cut represents an elevation of one of
the forms of hives adopted by Mr. Mott, inclosed in a frame like that of a watchman's box, but surrounded by trellis-work (not shown) instead of close boards. The lower portion q l being the warmest, is the apartment for the queen and the larva. The entrance for the bees is at a narrow hole at the back of the hive, as at e, near to the ventilators v v, which are tin tubes open on the outside of the hive, and perforated internally with minute holes (to prevent the bees from passing through) project ing horizontally towards the centre of the hive; above there is a floor, with large apertures, shown by the dots, which are covered by the receptacles for the honey r r r r, into which the bees, therefore, enter from beneath. The compartment of the hive where these vessels are placed, is made to open and shut as a box, the lid of which is shown as opened an inch or two, and so retained by the cord and pulley.