Newbie to beekeeping

Agnes I’m from West Lothian and know a few people with Flow Hives and there are plenty of “UK National” hive beekeepers in Scotland. Our bonnie heather creates some of the best honey in the world.

I live just outside Birmingham now and cant praise the FlowHive2 enough.


Thanks @Dean. Wish more people from scotland were on the forum. Have joined local club but feel as yet unable to talk to them about the flow hive as I think they may say we’re getting ahead of ourselves as we don’t yet know enough. To be fair only been to one
meeting so far. Unsure if I want to buy flow hives or just put the flow supers on the nation. What’s you’re thoughts?

Hi dean just saw you picture. Its lovely and wish you happy bee keeping

You are very wise not to mention the Flow hive early in your meetings. Some clubs are very accepting, but many are extremely traditional. If you do decide to get a Flow hive, I might say that you are wanting to set up a Langstroth hive and don’t mention the Flow part. Many traditional beekeepers are very suspicious of the Flow hive because of some clumsy marketing at the beginning of the Flow company’s life.

Having said that, the Flow hive is a Langstroth hive, which is the most common type of hive used in the US and Australia. There are plenty of them in the UK too, so it wouldn’t raise many eyebrows if that is what you told the club.

If you start with a National hive, you may find it quite tricky to put a Flow super on top, unless Flow now market them. They may do so, but I can’t access the UK Flow store to see what you have available. If they do have National sized Flow hives and supers, go for it - you will find it much easier to get a nucleus of bees on the correct frame size when you start. Sorry if this is all confusing, but please keep asking questions, we love to help people who are interested in bees! :blush:

Thanks Dean. Agree that most are set in they’re ways. They do a national super at flow to fit so was thinking on just getting this and putting on hive. The price of the flow 2 is pretty steep and I do think most of the club uses nationals so would struggle to get nuc from them

You can adapt National frames quite easily to Langstroth, but why bother if you have a better option?

P.S. I am Dawn, @HappyHibee is Dean! :blush:

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Sorry guys, not good with all this forum stuff. Never been on one before, so apologies to both Dawn and Dean

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Flow super wont fit uk national its same size as Langstroth which outside the uk is the most common type of hive.

There is no right or wrong way so if your club members aren’t supportive not much you cant learn online. YouTube taught me more than local club.

Were about the bees the honey and wax is a gift that should remind all beekeepers the bees are what’s important not pride or “purest” mentally.

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Had the same problem Dawn. The discount bundle option when you select the bundle wont allow you to “buy” to show in cart then pay.

The flow web site has supers for sale that they say fit uk nationals so we were thinking of using these.

Perfect not really looked for that option so great its accommodated.

Watching the bees inside is a selling point itself Agnes. I spend hours watching from not much than a couple of feet away.

Apologies not needed, just trying to show you how it works. Very confusing when you start, but if you stick with us, it will be as easy as family after a while! :blush:

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Yeah I’m looking forward to seeing the goings on inside the hive

Hi @Agnes,

Thanks for your interest.

Both options are possible.

You can either buy a Flow Super in UK National size and add to a locally purchased UK Nat sized brood box, or - with slight modifications as outlined here - you can shift to a Flow Langstroth sized complete hive (i.e. a Flow Classic Hive or Flow Hive 2).

If you need any further info let me know.



I am Oxford UK. You will find a lot of local activity on the Flowhive UK Facebook page.

U.K. also has Flowhive Ambassadors that you get to by emailing Flowhive via the European website. moves you to that site or draws your attention to that site.

I found the Ambassadors, to be UK based, very good and very prompt replies. They will help in everything from sales order to guidance.

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In UK you will find it easier to use National size equipment. If you need help That’s when the ease is important. Also lots of used kit around.

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Thanks, you won’t be as cold us in the winter, but do you leave you’re supers out or remove them. Not sure about buying second hand though. Will wait and see. Still in planning stage, lots to learn.

You should remove your flow hive super. Take the honey. My bees have now clustered I think. So unless your area gets a warm spell your super would now be cleaned up and stored. But you may like to keep it uncleared because if you watch we get some late October warmth then you would just prop it up on its side by the hive. If at this stage yours would be clustered then put a pack of bee fondant right above the cluster now. They will fly out of hive if it warms up.

Regarding used equipment as long as it’s cleaned up all is well. Most of the associations have used kit. I treat outside but use a small blow torch to burnish the inside. You probably won’t get a flow hive super second hand but I do see them for sale and I have just bought one. I confirmed with flowhive HQ that it was authentic.

This forum has lots of info on ventilation and condensation. You are advised to be aware of it. Your bees won’t die of cold but dripping condensation is a cause of hive death.

Beebase is the U.K. authority on bee health reading the great learning articles helps you understand bee health issues.

As you now won’t have bees till spring spend your time reading, watch you tube videos, consider the advise you get given. Select the route you wish to follow, select the advisors you wish to follow.

Well I’ve taken the plunge and bought 2 flow supers which we’re going to put on UK nationals. Did a lot of thinking and decided this was the best option for us. I know we won’t get bees here in Scotland until about April but can’t wait to build them and hubby is going to paint them. One is going to be a replica of the house, not sure about the other. Open to any suggestions.
Will continue to go to local bee club and learn. Not sure how the members will react when we say we have flow supers. Hopefully they will be interested.


You won’t regret taking the plunge Agnes. you will find a number of people who are dead against Flow Hives for one reason or another. They might be against anything new or have heard of people who have had issues. So I wouldn’t mention that you have flow hives till you know who you are talking to.
Me, I have four in my apiary of 25+ hives. I have had a few issues most of which were fixed by understanding more about them and thinking thing through. The high cost over a conventional hive is my limiting factor in having more of them but I also enjoy the conventional hive as well.
We are here on the forum to help you with any issues you might have have along the way but I’m sure you will enjoy bee keeping.

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