Hive pillow: types, from what and how to do it right with your own hands

Hive pillow: types, from what and how to do it right with your own hands

Warming hives is of great importance in preparation for winter. This will help to survive the frosts and start spring work. The quality of the materials used and the methods of protection from the cold affect the next year's honey harvest. It is especially important to protect the bees from the wind, but at the same time ensure good ventilation. The use of special cushions for beehives helps to achieve the required results.

Role in the hive

Using hive cushions helps protect bee houses from seasonal heat loss. This has a positive effect on the activity of families and helps beekeepers save food supplies.

Special cushions are used to cover the roof and side walls. They are made from burlap or other natural material. Inside put materials that help keep warm. These include cotton wool, moss, tow.

Types and features of insulation materials

Today there are many modern heaters. However, beekeepers usually prefer classic natural materials. The following is often used to insulate hives:

  • hay;
  • dry foliage;
  • needles;
  • dry moss;
  • sawdust;
  • cotton wool;
  • straw;
  • husk;
  • tow;
  • felt.

No less popular options are foam rubber and polystyrene. To make the right choice, you need to take into account the pros and cons of each material. It is recommended that you consider the following:

  1. Affordability - best use of funds that do not lead to significant costs. So, it is permissible to use moss, tow, straw or reeds. It is important that these materials do not harm the environment.
  2. Thermal conductivity - all insulating materials differ in their properties. At the same time, they can maintain the temperature in the hive for different times. This feature needs to be studied very carefully.
  3. Moisture absorption - the higher the hygroscopicity of the insulation, the worse it copes with its tasks. Hemp tow has the highest water permeability.
  4. Structure and physical properties - materials with a high degree of elasticity that do not cake for a long time are considered the most suitable. Bonfire, tow and dried moss are distinguished by such characteristics. They are able to maintain the required microclimate and maintain suitable conditions throughout the cold period.
  5. Attractive to rodents - chaff, grain husks and straw are considered the most appetizing food for rats and mice. Therefore, experts advise giving preference to cotton wool, felt or fire. You can also add a little needles to any material. Its smell will scare away animals.

What you need to make

Reed will become an effective filler for pillows. It evaporates water well, maintaining the required level of humidity in the structure. For application, it is permissible to use panicles and dry stems of the plant.

In spring and autumn, it is recommended to pay special attention to the quality of the top insulation. To do this, it is worth using materials that are dense enough so that the temperature in the nest remains comfortable for the bees. Such a task can be realized with a fabric or oilcloth canvas. A layer of cotton wool or felt is placed on top of it.

It is permissible to stuff pillows with materials from old mattresses or clothes. Dry moss is the perfect solution. It is affordable and does not require significant financial outlays. At the same time, this material helps to maintain the desired level of humidity in the hive.


Making a pillow for a beehive is not that difficult. First you need to make a so-called pillowcase. After that, it should be quilted in small squares. This will help evenly distribute the insulation. This measure will prevent rapid caking of the filler or the formation of lumps in its structure.

When insulating hives with pillows, it is recommended to take into account the following:

  1. The top cushion must match the inner dimensions of the liner.
  2. The area of the mats on the sides should provide for the possibility of adhering to the front and back of the structure. It is important to close the space from the ceiling to the floor of the hive.
  3. To avoid the formation and accumulation of condensate, it is required to place a sheet of foam under the roof. Its thickness should not exceed 5 centimeters.
  4. The upper elements need to be insulated by combining 2 types of materials - a thin cotton pad and pieces of foam rubber.
  5. Some bee houses are insulated with porous mattresses. They help to collect and hold the condensate that is released. At the same time, instead of wet mattresses, new dry ones are placed in the hives.

Using beehive cushions helps protect insects from the cold. At the same time, making such heaters with your own hands will not be difficult. To do this, it is important to choose the right filler and follow the basic recommendations of experts.

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