Albuquerque Beekeepers

Urban beekeeping in New Mexico's largest city.


Topbar hive users.


Topbar hive users.

This group is for people who are interested in learning more about topbar beekeeping.

Members: 38
Latest Activity: Apr 30

Discussion Forum

Seasonal Laying Patterns 2 Replies

Hello All, On inspection of my only hive 2 weeks ago and again today my hive population seems smaller. There is a lot of honey production, and many vacated (dark cells). I did not find the queen or…Continue

Started by Jeannie Pace. Last reply by Jeannie Pace Jul 16, 2018.

Inspections 3 Replies

Hello All, Finally living a dream by installing my first package of bees two weeks ago. I gave the gals 9 days to settle in before making an inspection. I limited the hive to 8 bars as a starter.  I…Continue

Tags: inspections

Started by Jeannie Pace. Last reply by Elizabeth Lake Apr 13, 2018.

Awesome Site 5 Replies

Hi All,Here is an awesome site which contains a wealth of information about bees. http://scientificbeekeeping.comContinue

Started by Ivy. Last reply by Rhett Renoud Apr 28, 2016.

Comment Wall


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Comment by Diana on April 21, 2022 at 1:12am
Linda. I have top bars. The top bars are easier for me to work with as far as weight. You have to stay on top of the combs but I love working the hive.
Comment by Rhett Renoud on April 20, 2022 at 6:18pm

Hi, Linda.  Welcome to the group.  I would encourage you to watch a plethora of YouTube videos regarding the different types of hives.  I would also encourage you to meet other beekeepers in your area so you can see firsthand what those hives look like and how they function.  I personally use 8 frame Langstroth, top bar, and Warre hives.  All three hives have their pros and cons.  Let us know how it goes!  

Comment by Linda Spencer on April 20, 2022 at 4:13pm

I’m trying to decide which type of hive to use.  I’d love to hear from anyone willing to share what they love about horizontal hives (is that the same as TopBar?) and if there are issues I need to know about before deciding. Thank you.

Comment by Jeannie Pace on July 23, 2019 at 8:24am

Hello All, 

This is my 2nd summer with a top bar.  It's my only hive as I am trying to learn  beekeeping, 

My first colony was Saskatraz. They were gentle and easy to work around; however, the colony disappeared late winter or early spring.  Reason undetermined 

I was gifted a swarm that I installed May 1.  They were  feisty on installation. They are getting more defensive.  This morning I approached the water station and bees started circling me 6 feet from the station.  Last night one nailed me in the back as I worked in the garden out of their path (so I thought). 

I'm thinking I need to requeen, but honestly, I don't want to open the hive to inspect the situation.  



Comment by Jeannie Pace on June 19, 2019 at 1:02pm

Two guys in town make wonderful top bar hives. 

The original designer is T.J. Carr.

The other guy - who uses T.J.'s plans is Jason Fink. He has a few built and available for sale.  

To preview this hive use this link.

TJ has made his plans available to ABQ beekeeps.



Comment by Ronda Zaragoza on June 19, 2019 at 10:20am

Hi Everyone,

I am new to beekeeping and would like to purchase a top bar hive from someone local instead of from a company.  Does anyone have one they would like to sell to a rookie?

Thank you fro your time.


Ronda Z

Comment by Eric Bunnel on March 25, 2019 at 8:22pm

Jeannie, It's hard to tell for sure without seeing the hive, but that sounds like a pretty typical mite kill. The winter bees are sick and have a shortened lifespan and don't make it until spring. Did you do an alcohol wash or sugar shake to get an accurate mite count? If you are just looking for mites visually, you rarely see them until you have a pretty sever infestation. Take a look at the tops of the brood cells, you will probably see white crystals. That's mite feces and is a sure sign of a mite kill. 

Comment by Jeannie Pace on March 25, 2019 at 1:27pm

Sadly, I cleaned out my hive this morning. I suspected the girls had died or absconded so my disappointed wasn't huge.  Late summer I had to requeen.  The new queen was laying a great brood pattern.  When I winterized the hive, the population had increased and their temperament was gentle and busy.  

On inspection today, I found maybe 200-300 dead bees.  Most on the floor - a few clustered with heads into the cell.  Pounds of honey, nectar and colorful pollen in the combs. No sign of brood cells. No glaring signs of mites or other pests. A very tidy hive. Some of the capped honey near the center entrance is darker then the combs toward the ends. 

This is my first colony of bees. 

The hive is at 7,000 ft. 

I'm not certain what conditions I should attribute the low bee count or what my next steps should be.  I would like to start another colony, but don't want to repeat my mistakes. 

Your ideas will be appreciated. 

Thank you, 


Comment by Dorian Folie on May 18, 2018 at 11:59am

Hello Fellow Beekeepers! 

My bees did not over winter and I am looking for a swarm.  I used to be on the swarm list but somehow i am not on it anymore. I would really like to get a new swarm soon.  I have been keeping my eye out but have not seen many bees at all!! Please let me know if you see a swarm or have one you are willing to give me. 

Thank you, 

Dorian 505-321-7571

Comment by Dorian Folie on May 14, 2018 at 1:59pm

I would either leave it alone or move it closer to the rest of the combs. 


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