Beekeeping startup HiveHaven is crowdfunding a 3D printed “Bee Box”, to save the bees from the pest, disease and overheating issues which threaten bees globally.
HiveHaven is an Australian company that has developed and trialled a range of “bee boxes”. They’re currently looking for support through a crowdfunding campaign to fund further research and development that will help SAVE THE BEES.
Why ALL THE CAPS? Because the humble bee faces an uncertain future. “Bees are really important,” says Jeff Ross, designer of the HiveHaven prototype. “One third of everything we eat requires a bee. And if the bees weren’t there creating pollination, the majority of plants would disappear. But the bees need all the help they can get, because they’re in trouble.”
The challenges they face include overheating hives, disease, and aggressive pests in the insect kingdom, factors which have caused a worldwide slump in population numbers. And yet bees are crucial to the continued survival of humankind, due to their pollination role in nature and also for our agricultural crops. HiveHaven estimates that bees currently contribute $1.7billion to the Australian economy.
HiveHaven Needs 3D Printer for Rapid Prototyping
The HiveHaven crowdfunding campaign is running until 29 June. Their goal is very specific; to raise sufficient funds to purchase a large-scale 3D printer for rapid prototyping, and enable their Stingless Native Bee and Honey Bee Boxes to be ‘fine-tuned’ through further research.
To date, HiveHaven have been working closely with University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, to a point where the Honey Bee Boxes are ready to bring to market. But further work is required with USC engineers and scientists to develop their Stingless Native Bee Box prototypes through the use of 3D printing, specifically in the use of biodegradable and sustainable materials.
The name of this sustainable material is High-Density Polythene, or HPDE, which is derived from recycled milk bottles. HiveHaven claims boxes made from HPDE are the first to provide environmentally friendly in-built biosecurity control that addresses the deadly diseases and pests such as spore based bacteria, Varroa mite, and the African small hive beetle.
“As a sustainable manufacturing alternative to old growth hoop pine,” states the HiveHaven website, “this durable material requires minimal maintenance, subsequently providing beekeepers with improved returns on their time and investment.”
Moreover, there’s scope to 3D print the Stingless Native Bee Boxes at the final production stage also. But first things first, the campaign needs to be successfully funded. Check out the HiveHaven campaign video below, and then show them your honey. Ahem, money.
License: The text of "3D Printed Beehive: Save the Bees with HiveHaven" by All3DP is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.