Kieler Mini Nuc Mating Hive (without top bars)
The Kieler mini nuc is simliar in many respects to the Apidea mini nuc but with one significant exception - it is nearly twice the volume! External dimensions are 17 cm high, 22 cm wide and 27 cm long. Where it also differs from the Apidea is the use of 17 cm long top bars coupled with sloping internal walls - just like a full sized top bar hive. An upper body is also available to allow expansion of the little colony and for uniting two colonies together, for example when the queen has been removed from one. Instructions for the use of this little hive can be found here.
Included in the price is an entrance disk, removable food compartment and sliding floor. The top bars are not included and should be purchased separately. The hive takes 4 top bars when used with the food compartment and 6 when the compartment is removed. The top bars require a small starter strip 10 to 15mm wide cut from a sheet of foundation. To secure the strip into the groove in the top bar either use liquid wax from a spoon or dip the edge of the strip in fairly cool but just liquid wax, press the strip into the groove whilst the wax on the edge is stil soft and then run a small soldering iron along the wax which will have built up either side of the groove. Alternatively, some beekeepers simply fill the slot with liquid wax but most beekeepers find a starter strip is more reliable.
Our Neopoll bee food is ideal for feeding the bees in these mini-nucs. Convenient to use and with everything the bees need.
Although not part of the kit many beekeepers find these mini-nucs easier to use if they slip a piece of polythene between the roof and mini-nuc body. Any bit of clear polythene from a plastic bag will be suitable.
A great mini nuc with the size necessary for more stable populations than an Apidea. They can be securely stacked on top of each other (facing in different directions) and with their increased size can be used for overwintering if precautions are taken to ensure they have plenty of stores at the onset of winter.
There are videos showing aspects of these mini-nucs here.