Room for wintering bees: types and how to make your own hands, pluses of use

Room for wintering bees: types and how to make your own hands, pluses of use

Bees have long provided humans with honey and other useful products. In return, people take care of insects, creating optimal conditions for them to live. In regions with severe frosty winters, beekeepers need not only hives, but also rooms for wintering bees, because without additional protection, the hives will not withstand a significant drop in temperature, and the bee colonies will die.

What is used for

Zimovnik is a room for the installation of beehives. Omshaniki (a specially built storage for hives) is used as a wintering house if the beekeeper has many bee colonies.To store a small number of hives, an insulated utility building (shed or garage) is suitable. It should be quiet, high humidity and drafts are not allowed.

Bee houses are installed in several rows. Insects are provided with high-quality food, ventilation, constant room temperature, peace and quiet. Under such conditions, the bees winter well, colonies remain he althy and strong.

Pros of application

Insects are safer when stored indoors during the winter, the presence of a beekeeper gives the beekeeper many advantages:

  • families are not affected by changes in temperature and humidity;
  • bees consume less food without spending extra energy on heating the club;
  • not attacked by birds;
  • hives last longer;
  • there is an opportunity, if necessary, to inspect and feed insects;

Extraneous noises do not penetrate into the moss, even weak families winter calmly, the percentage of insect losses after wintering is much lower.

Popular species

There are underground, semi-underground and ground types of omshaniks. The choice depends on the number of families in the apiary, the type of soil on the site, the level of groundwater. Many beekeepers build ground buildings, using them as utility rooms during the warm period to store inventory.

Experienced beekeepers with a large number of families prefer underground winter quarters. The main part of such a room is located below the ground level (at a depth of 3 meters), the roof of the building is located on the surface. In such an omshanik, a constant temperature and humidity are maintained, no additional insulation is required.

For the equipment of an underground pit, deep groundwater (more than 4 meters) is required. Such premises are more time-consuming and costly during construction, but with the right equipment they will last a long time and fully pay off the investment. The disadvantage is that it is not very convenient to extract the hives in the spring and install the bee houses for the winter.

Semi-underground mansions are built if the groundwater is not deep on the site. At 1.5 meters, the structure goes underground, the rest is above ground level. The windows available in such a winter hut allow you to save on electricity. The building needs additional insulation. Clay, expanded clay, expanded polystyrene or expanded polystyrene sheets are used as insulation.

Above-ground premises need high-quality insulation and sound insulation. In the semi-underground and above-ground premises for winter storage of beehives, it is necessary to periodically control the temperature and humidity.

Important: do not place hives in the basement where stocks of vegetables and fruits are stored. The aroma of apples will disturb insects. When storing vegetables, the likelihood of mold and increased humidity in the room is high. Winter houses are not located near residential buildings and workshops, the noise will disturb insects.

Build Requirements

Insect hibernation room is not built in the lowlands, next to water bodies, it must be protected from the wind and located next to the apiary. First you need to decide on the type of omshanik. At the same time, its area is taken into account (depending on the number of families), the type of soil on the site, the level of groundwater.

The area of the premises is calculated depending on the number of hives and the possible expansion of the apiary. For a single-walled hive, 0.5-0.6 cubic meters is required, for a double-walled hive - 0.8-0.9 meters.


It is necessary for the influx of fresh air, removal of excess heat and humidity. Damp air in the room causes souring of honey in the hives, the appearance of mold in bee houses. With excessive dryness, honey quickly crystallizes, the bees starve.

Usually install supply and exhaust ventilation. One pipe reaches almost to the floor of the omshanik, the other is mounted under the ceiling. Through the first pipe, warm air rises and is removed from the room, the second serves to supply fresh air.

They should be fitted with variable speed fans to be able to control the process. A rectangular screen is installed under the upper ceiling pipe, in this case, the air enters in different directions of the pit and warms up quickly.

Less commonly used is 1 pipe, which reaches almost to the floor and exits through the roof. The pipe on the roof is additionally insulated.

It brings fresh air into the room and removes heated air from the room. Equipped with a valve to adjust the room temperature.


Sharp fluctuations in temperature are not allowed in the bee house. It is maintained at a level from 0 to +4 °С.


Damp indoor air causes sourness of honey in the hives, the appearance of mold in bee houses. With excessive dryness, honey quickly crystallizes, the bees starve.

Optimal for insects is 75-80%. The maximum allowable rate is 85%.

Required tools and materials

First, they are determined with the type of omshanik and the amount of materials needed. For construction, you can use wood, stone, brick, adobe. The walls can be plastered and whitewashed with lime, sheathed with wood, clapboard. For the foundation you will need concrete slabs, crushed stone, sand. For the manufacture of racks, timber, metal corners, screws, self-tapping screws are useful. You should take care of the insulation and pipes for installing ventilation in advance.

Building and carpentry skills are necessary for the quality construction of a winter road. If there was no experience in building buildings before, it is better to entrust the construction of a bee house to professionals.

Making an omshanik with your own hands

For the construction of an underground type of omshanik you will need:

  • dig a pit about 3 meters deep, the length and width are determined by the area of the room;
  • level the bottom and walls of the pit;
  • raise the formwork and pour it with concrete;
  • after complete drying, lay brickwork around the perimeter;
  • lay pipes or channel on top of the last row of brickwork, to strengthen the structure they are tied together;
  • lay on top of the board, leaving holes for ventilation pipes and doors;
  • boards are covered with a separating film, reinforcement is mounted on top and poured with concrete;
  • after drying, a layer of waterproofing is laid (film, roofing material);
  • a layer of soil is laid on the roof to level it with the ground level;
  • mounted ladder, door and ventilation;
  • hive racks being installed.

Sand is poured on the floor. Doors should be tight so that cold air does not penetrate through them. Ventilation openings are covered with a mesh to protect against rodents.


This is a crucial period for the beekeeper. It is necessary to check the hives, provide insects with food.


Omshanik must be ventilated, if necessary, whitewash the walls with lime to kill mold. Check the strength of the racks and the serviceability of ventilation. Inspect the premises, eliminate rodent nests, check the roof and fix leaks.

When to bring in hives?

Bee houses are installed for wintering after the onset of cold weather. This happens not earlier than the last decade of October. Close the entrances, the hives are brought into the room.Weak families are installed on the upper tier. Leave the doors open for 2-3 hours after installing the hives to even out the temperature.

Then the doors are closed. The upper entrances are opened after 2-3 days, when the bee colonies have completely calmed down. Several thermometers are installed in the omshanik to control the temperature. It is regulated by valves on the ventilation pipes.

The beekeeper's equipment will allow the insects to have a great winter, and the beekeeper to get strong he althy colonies in the spring. The choice of the type of room depends on the beekeeper, the main thing is that the bees feel comfortable in the winter hut.

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