WHAT ARE SEA HIVES?
Our Sea Hives are made of recycled fishing nets and plastic bottles rotomoulded to make hexagonal tubes. There is an option to suspend smaller glass tubes inside the larger plastic tubes to increase weight and the variety of refuge sizes. Sea Hives are designed to nest together, secured by stainless steel fasteners to create robust structures that are secured to the sea bed or suspended from pontoons. These provide multiple habitats for marine life to occupy, maximising their benefit to the marine environment. The aim is to make Sea Hives from 100% recycled material – and better than that to use the waste products that other recyclers can not recycle. Each standard SeaHive contains the equivalent of approximately 1500 plastic bottles and 60kg of recycled glass.
HOW DO THEY WORK?
All materials in the sea concentrate chemicals on their surfaces, and bacteria and other single celled organisms take advantage of the concentrated chemicals and use them as nutrients to multiply and grow. Sea Hives provide a solid surface on which these chemicals can accumulate over a large area, allowing bacteria and other single celled organisms to take advantage of the concentrated chemicals and use them as nutrients to multiply and grow. Many of these organisms attach themselves to the Sea Hives, providing the building blocks for new marine ecosystems. Helped by the film of bacteria the larvae of plants and filter feeding animals floating in the plankton settle out and establish themselves on Sea Hive surfaces. These filter feeding organisms rapidly expand to create colonies of encrusting animals that themselves become food for predators like nudibranchs, starfish and cowries, which are in turn predated by other animals.In addition to providing surfaces for to establish new ecosystems, Sea Hives also provide shelter for juvenile invertebrates (crabs, lobsters, octopus etc) and fish.
Two types of Sea Hives have been designed, one open at each end, and another with only one open end. Sea Hives that are open on each end allow the prevailing water currents to flow through them, bringing food to animals that reach out into the water column like soft and hard corals. Sea Hives with one closed end are ideal shelters for animals and fish that like to protect themselves. They can swim out and capture their food before returning to their homes, to avoid being eaten themselves.
WHAT WE DO
Sea Hives are durable ‘reef like’ structures designed to resemble the marine environment and encourage the natural behaviour of fish and other marine life.
When suspended in fish farm cages Sea Hives provide shelter for valuable cleaner fish introduced to remove parasites clinging to commercial fish stocks.
Designing, placing and monitoring Sea Hives provides an ideal opportunity for students and communities to learn about the benefits of plastic recycling and the restoration of damaged marine environments.
The open ended design of the hexagonal tubes encourages the free flow of water through the structure, this feature, when combined with their low weight when submerged, ensures that Sea Hives can be safely suspended from floating structures with minimal modification.
WHO WE ARE
Sea Hives was set ups in the UK by Dave Francis and Will Shakspeare, two men tired of just seeing sandy bottoms on the beach.
We convert recycled fishing nets and bottles into hexagonal tubes which, when fastened together, create structures that resemble honeycomb, that’s why we called them Sea Hives. Our aim is to site Sea Hives where they can provide the greatest benefit to marine life, be it cleaner fish in salmon cages or fish fry sheltering in a marina. Marine organisms of any size need somewhere to live, somewhere to eat, breed and shelter. Sea Hives can provide this. Designed to align with the current to give maximum water flow, a standard SeaHive will increase surface area for colonisation by 600%. It will also provide habitat for a wide range of life – from small filter feeders to larger invertebrates. In short – a food chain.
Made using a hexagonal design, Sea Hives are designed to be modular, they can be joined together to form safe havens for either keeping people in or fish out!. They can be formed into “igloo” structures to provide live “Aquariums”, or used to provide resistance for storm surges.