Beehive Lids Explained
The two primary lid styles you're going to come across for the Langstroth style beehive is the telescoping outer cover and the migratory lid.
The telescoping outer cover is the recommended lid for most beekeepers. It will protect your hive from the elements and is the best option if you live in an area that gets a cold winter.
The migratory lid is what we used to use here in Hawaii. We have screened bottoms so we don't worry about rain getting in under the lid and we never get snow or temperatures below freezing. The migratory lid is cheaper, takes up less space and is very easy to make. If you plan on moving your bees often, for pollination services or to harvest honey from specific flowers, having a lid that saves space in the truck might be something to consider.
If you need a lid ASAP and don't have one, in a pinch I've gone to Home Depot and had them cut down a large sheet of 3/4" non pressure treated plywood. You get about 8 pieces from this sheet. It cost me $40 in total. I used some as lids and some as bottom boards. The lids do warp a bit, but if its warm out, this is a good thing because it allows for an upper entrance.
Watch the video below for more information about these lids and how they're used.
If you're not sure what kind of hive style you want, check out our video about why I recommend a Langstroth style beehive for almost every beginner beekeeper >> watch video
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