Flow Hive Experience….by Ron Adelman
This is my third year with three hives. Two are Flow Hives and one is a Langstroth. All have successfully wintered over from three nucs although I had some issues my first year with the Langstroth having to replace the queen twice, and the Flow Hives each swarmed after the second year (I captured one, giving it to a friend.) One survived with a new queen, the other died off after I made a rookie mistake killing off all the queen cells the day before it swarmed.
I have two deeps on with a queen excluder on top, screen bottom boards that I close up in the winter and the Flow Hive on top. I rubbed beeswax over the Flow Hive cells to encourage the bees to fill it, after waiting for them to fill the mechanism with honey. Flow Hives have two windows to view the back and side activity so you can see the honey filling the cells. My Flow Hives produced a few gallons of honey each about the same as the Langstroth but the extraction was done right into the jars direct from the hive! No fuss, no mess … remove the Flow Hive tops after the last extractions for winter. I bought Flow Fives for my grandchildren who were doing a bee project for their Montessori school thinking they would be able to observe more without suiting up.
I’m no expert, but have watched hours and hours of YouTube videos by Fredrick Dunn, a relocated Saint Louis native to Western Pennsylvania who has a weekly YouTube station and Facebook page. He is a great resource on beekeeping in general and a Flow Hive guru: https://www.facebook.com/groups/3062274013832702/
The Flow Hive website, an Australian company that had one of KickStarter’s most successful fundraising campaigns with lots of ongoing support on their own YouTube station: https://www.honeyflow.com/
Don’t hesitate to contact me if I can answer any of your questions or would like to plan a visit to my apiary in Wentzville: firstname.lastname@example.org