This is pretty cool! If you want to actually help the bees then why not build your own native beehive? Native bees are superior pollinators to honey bees because they have evolved to live and pollinate in the ecosystem they are currently in. The thing about most native bees is that they live alone. Most bees are solitary. There are many things that we do or have in our daily lives that hurts their survival. Things like tilling the ground, cutting down old trees, laying landscaping cloth, all hurts native species. Lets do one thing to help.
Space 10 in conjunction with Ikea, yes that Ikea, is providing the design tools to create your own hive. The best part is the online design program is free! The online design program is fairly basic and does not allow for much individual customization but you will still get a cool unique native beehive design in like 5 minutes.
You can download the plans once you are finished and happy with your design . You will receive three files including a PDF of your bee home, assembly instruction including how you can improve your property to be more bee friendly, and the .dxf file.
Using CAD software
The .dxf file is commonly used in Autodesk computer aided design (CAD) software. If you already have CAD software make sure that it has “CAM” capabilities before you start trying to design on your own. CNC milling machines require a CAM file to operate. On a side note Autodesk offers most of their CAD software for free to students and educators.
What if I don’t have CAD software?
The easiest route is to take this .dxf to a makerspace near you and have them create the parts for you. The makerspace will need to have a CNC mill. You then follow the included instructions, assemble, and install. The instructions give suggestions about wood choice and how to protect the wood without harming the bees.