I had the pleasure of catching up with Giorgio and had a great chat about his own design of native bee boxes. Originally from Brazil where he has had many years experience researching native bees and developing the industry and has just recently moved permanently to Australia.
Giorgio has designed his own boxes and manufactures them himself using the name “Nativo”. These are square frames with three layers like other standard OATH boxes but also use a long entry tube to help with hive defense. Between each frame sit two clear acrylic plates that act as brood support and also help with a clean division if you want to split or duplicate the hive. The box is made from 33mm thick Hoop Pine with a frame size of 220mm x 220mm square. Internal volume of 2.3 litres per frame. Screwed together and finished with high grade clear coat.
The top “Honey Super” frame is enclosed with acrylic plates top and bottom and is easily separated from the lower boxes because it’s only connected via a center tube to the middle brood frame, so the bees only access to the honey super through that tube. The honey super frame can also be fitted with plastic honey trays at a later date.
There’s a vertical vent tube in the lid that allows air flow from the center of the box.
He also produces these large PVC roofs that fit the box snugly. It’s important to provide a good roof to keep the sun and rain off a native bee hive box.
Compatability with OATHs? These boxes are 220mm square and the OATH is 280mm x 200mm so if you want to split these boxes with your current OATH box you will need to make an adapter plate to match them up.
In 2018 Giorgio visited the Brisbane Native Bee Club where gave an interesting presentation and talked about his experience in the industry and design of his new box
Giorgio has just started out in Australia but has a number of ideas and plans for his Native Bee business including selling Stingless Bee Honey as well as making Honey Mead using European Bee Honey.
He might have some boxes full with bees available for sale later in the year.