What Type of Paint Should I Use on a Beehive?
Please let me know what non toxic paint to use for beehive boxes.
I don't think it's necessary to use non-toxic paint on a bee hive. In fact I'm not sure that there is any such thing as a non-toxic paint to a bee. Paint which is non-toxic to humans is likely to be okay for honeybees.
In some countries, beehives are often not painted because the boxes are made from redwood which doesn't need protection. If hives are made from anything else it is a good idea as it prolongs the life of the boxes.
I use white exterior latex paint because I like the way they look, but I have seen beehives painted with many different types of paint in many different colors.
So long as the paint is only applied to the OUTSIDE and edges of the hive boxes, and allowed to dry very thoroughly before bees are install, I don't think that it matters what type of paint is used.
Bear in mind that white painted boxes are much more visible so are more likely to be noticed by neighbors. If you think it might be better for the hives to go unnoticed perhaps a color which would offer more camouflage could be used.
If the color is not important to you, and you don't believe that the bees care, you might consider going to your local paint store or home improvement store and see what specials are on offer. Often paint stores have cans of paint, which have been mixed wrongly or returned, which can be purchased at a significant discount.
I've read that some people have found that bees prefer different colors, and this may be true, but I think as long as the inside of the hive is suitable for them the bees won't mind what's on the outside. However be careful of changing the color of boxes. For example if you had a row of hives which were white, but one box painted red, and you changed the red box for a white one and one of the neighboring boxes for a red one, I think you would find that it would cause many returning bees to go to the wrong hive and therefore fighting would ensue.
I hope that helps.
The Bee Guy.
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