Alpine hive: drawings and dimensions, how to do it yourself and keeping bees

Alpine hive: drawings and dimensions, how to do it yourself and keeping bees

Alpine beehive is a special design, which received a different name from its inventor. He described it as "a stable climate". The “Alpine” scheme for organizing a bee place of residence was called on the territory of the Soviet Union. This designation reflected the main properties: it was assumed that the bees would be comfortable inside, and the hive layout would allow them to survive the most difficult weather conditions without loss.

What is an alpine hive

The Alpine hive was invented by French beekeeper Roger Delon. He called it a "stable climate" and brought it to a scientific conference. Since then, Delon has been considered an unsurpassed specialist in the study of the life of bee colonies.

The design feature invented by Delon is the conditions as close as possible to natural properties, as well as the ability of the beekeeper to work with insects without difficulty.

The idea of creating a hive pursued the author for many years. He was only able to realize it in the 1960s.

Scientist maintained 1000 families using his own inventions. He placed all the devices on the territory of 120 square kilometers. The trick of the hive equipment was that it did not require daily maintenance. The task, as the inventor said, was different. He managed to create special techniques that provide maximum income at minimum cost.

An analogue of the design - the hollow of an old tree. The hive consisted of several buildings, which, according to the author's idea, should have been well blown throughout the entire period of honey collection.

Each design looks like a box with standard sizes, each of them contains 8 frames made of wire. As the families grow, the boxes are stacked on top of each other. Many beekeepers compare the principle of building an alpine hive with a game of cubes.

Pros and cons

Those who use Delon's diagrams and drawings describe the main advantages of the invention:

  • families are developing rapidly as living conditions are close to natural;
  • honey collection indicators;
  • each hive weighs only 20 kilograms;
  • apiary can be located in a small area;
  • does not require constant care;
  • bees themselves form honeycombs;
  • small costs;
  • beekeepers build alpine hives on their own, using improvised materials;
  • good looks.

Delon's design feature is the ability to give the bees maximum freedom. Insects that build their own combs are more interested in productivity. Another obvious plus of the design is connected with this - the microclimate inside the bee colony. When everyone is busy with their own business, there is no time for a senseless chaotic movement. According to the reviews of domestic and foreign experts, the bees that came out of the alpine hives look strong and he althy.

In addition to pluses, the design also has minuses:

  • bees build combs on their own, and the result is squeezing the upper combs of the lower combs;
  • the family develops quickly (this can be a minus if the beekeeper does not plan large production volumes);
  • families from ordinary hives take root poorly and take a long time;
  • there are no wire frames for sale - you have to make them yourself.

Alpine has disadvantages that can be adapted to specific conditions. The listed disadvantages are easily solved.

The only thing that cannot be corrected is the low survival rate of bees from ordinary hives.Beekeepers do not recommend experimenting with this property.

Drawings and dimensions

The design is considered quite simple. Minimum experience with materials will allow the beekeeper to build a hive on their own.

Drawings and dimensions:

  • 360 by 230 - wall size;
  • 324 by 57 - dimensions for the bottom.


To make a beehive with your own hands, you will need to prepare materials and tools in advance:

  • wood slats;
  • bars;
  • sanded boards;
  • screws;
  • platform stand;
  • 20 meter wire;
  • screwdrivers, saw, jigsaw, hacksaw.

Khomich adapted the design for the Soviet Union. He also suggested that beekeepers make such hives on their own.

Hive body

You will need 4 wooden boards for the body, pine boards are best. The blanks are pre-treated with antiseptic solutions, then the cases are fastened with a screwdriver.

Design bottom

For the manufacture of the bottom take pine boards 30 mm thick. The surface is treated with an antiseptic on both sides. The landing slot is made at a height of 30 millimeters, and the landing board is made at an angle of 45 degrees.


The cassette is made for queen cells. In addition, royal jelly is stored there, and it is also used during transportation.


The roof is also a feeder. For it, sheets of thin plywood or furniture cardboard are used. There must be insulating material between the sheets, and the top must be reinforced with roofing material.


Frames will have to be made by yourself, since you cannot find such frames on sale. A frame is mounted on the bar with a wire. The length of the workpiece is 730 millimeters. Each design requires 8 frames.

Important operating principles

At the summer stage of keeping bees, the difference between the alpine hive and the usual one is almost not noticeable. It starts with the arrival of cold weather. Strong families traditionally move to single-tiered hives, while weak ones remain inside multi-tiered ones. At the bottom of the compartment is the queen with her brood. The upper body is traditionally left for a feeder with a supply of honey and pollen.

When the first warm days come after pestilence, the bees begin to gradually move from the lower compartment to the upper one. As the lower compartment is released, it is removed. It turns out that while caring for the Alpine beekeepers, as it were, play with cubes, constantly rearranging the compartments.

Domestic modernization of Khomich

The hive was upgraded by Vladimir Khomich. He made the design so that 108 millimeters long frames could be used inside.The effectiveness of this technique was proven in the Khomich apiary, which included a variety of alpine hives with mobile wheels. Khomich came up with a platform that allowed beehives to be transported in search of more suitable honey plants.

Gradual resettlement of bees

Beekeepers who have decided to transfer their regular bee colonies to alpine hives admit that this has become a real problem. It can take a long time to train bees.

If you have experience, you can try to experiment. Beekeeping is a science, so you can not neglect the advice and recommendations.

Beekeepers advise to populate the uterus in the upper compartments of the buildings, separated by ceiling diaphragms. After the young growth appears inside the hive, it is connected with the rest of the bees.On the territory of the new hive, the uterus is provoked to lay new eggs. For this to happen, you will need to move the uterus down.

The queen will move up according to natural instinct and lay eggs along the way. The optimal time for relocation is the beginning of May. Then the young growth will be born with the beginning of flowering and will start collecting pollen.

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