When you see a beehive around the outside of your house, you generally want to run away. But some people are actually putting them right in their living rooms—on purpose!
Populations of bees have been on the decline for years due to habitat loss and pesticide use. To combat the problem, a company called BEEcosystem has created an observation hive that allows everyday people to have a beehive inside their home and to personally contribute to fixing the population problem. Plus, the hives look pretty cool and act as a living piece of art in the keeper’s home.
The hives can be installed indoors or outdoors—as well as at any elevation—and feature hexagonal shapes that can be added and interlocked as the hive grows. Magnets hold the shapes together. There is a feeder attached, as well as a detachable bar frame for the user to harvest honey.
And, according to the company, the bees are not able to escape into the keeper’s home thanks to a number of safety features. If the hive is kept inside, a small tube that leads outside allows the bees to go directly outside and return to the hive as they need to.
According to BEEcosystem’s website, more than 100 crops are pollinated by bees in the United States, and one of out three bites of food was pollinated by a bee.
For those who are unsure about their ability to act as beekeepers, the company has set up a Beekeeper Ambassador Program that can help customers, such as farm-to-table restaurants, vineyards and hotels, who want to utilize the hives but lack the skills needed to maintain them.
“We feel the BEEcosystem hive can add tons of value to eco- and agri-tourism businesses,” Dustin Betz, co-creator of the hive told Inhabitat. “And the Ambassador Program will allow more of those businesses to purchase our product without having to have someone in-house manage the hive—this network will also help to educate the next generation of beekeepers, and greatly increase the reach of our social impact.”
The hives are now available for preorder ahead of the 2018 beekeeping season. The single-unit BEEcosystem Observation Honeybee Hive is being sold for $599.99. The hive also comes in models with additional units, up to five, which runs for $2,599.
Not interested in owning a beehive but still want to help the bees? To help BEEcosystem improve its company and expand its educational initiatives, you can donate to its Indiegogo campaign.
[h/t Green Matters]