joshua akhtar’s foldable 'bait hive' is a clever beehive for simple swarm relocation

joshua akhtar’s foldable 'bait hive' is a clever beehive for simple swarm relocation


winner of the 2016 wilko & w’innovate award for innovation, joshua akhtar’s passion project, bait hive, is a foldable beehive that uses pheromones to safely attract and capture swarms of bees for relocation. the hives work by offering the optimum conditions a swarm would be looking for; the hive lures the swarms with a scented pheromone, mixed with beeswax and rubbed on the fold out landing pad and interior of the hive. 

a prototype bait hive in a corn field

akhtar’s bait hives are designed to be easily located at height, where owners have the maximum chance of catching a swarm. the tunnelled foam entrance mimics a hollow tree and provides insulation for the bees. the 6 mm thick body of the hive is optically opaque and is resilient to all weather. finally, a pop out base reveals a varroa mesh floor allowing the swarm to be left in the hive for an extended period of time, and the mesh floor opens partially for ventilation.

joshua akhtar spent his final year at university developing the product, keeping bees on the roof of his house on the seafront



‘I had 20,000 honey bees escape in my university house – which gave my housemates what I would describe as, the ultimate surprise.’ explains akhtar, ‘I also at one point had to push 50,000 honey bees hidden under a blanket on a skateboard through central london.

a fully assembled bait hive

an explanation of the different aspects of the beehive

the interior’s frame, tunneled entrance and pop out base

testing a colony of bees in the bait hive

bait hive assembles in less than a minute

various images of bait hives catching swarms

joshua akhtar in the studio with a frame of honey

bait hive’s packaging



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: lynn chaya | designboom

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