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  1. #41
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
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    6,238

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Quote Originally Posted by Rolande View Post
    Hi, is this a general reference to running colonies in your area or specific to your own indoor wintering set-up (as per that nice video you linked a while back)?
    ha ha thanks Rolande, kinda crazy walking aisles of stacked hives

    as to your question, upper entrance has little effect in an indoor wintering set up. My comment was more towards the outdoor wintering arrangement. It provides natural convection to help reduce moisture also provides them an entrance during periods when the lower entrance is blocked with snow and ice.

    But throughout the production season , I see more bees using the bottom entrance than the top.
    But then again, my hives are full of cracks and holes, so really who knows, right?
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
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    6,238

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    i have seen hives in churches which fill an entire section of a wall use a one inch hole for an entrance.

    I have also seen a hive in a shed where as they walked a good meter to get in and out of their hive.

    I have also seen a hive build open comb on a tree limb

    and I have also seen a hive that nicely filled a squirrel hole, to the squirrels dismay , lol


    What Im trying to say is that it really makes little difference as far as the bees are concerned. They deal the best with the home they find.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Shoshone County, Idaho
    Posts
    567

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    I don't use honey/queen excluders anymore except for queen rearing as well.
    Hugus Creek Honey Farm: St. Maries, ID / Lewiston, ID
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  4. #44
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Saskatchewan, Canada
    Posts
    282

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    I provide both top and bottom entrances to my hives, some have Q excluders some don't. Some hives make lots of use of the top entrance, some mainly use the bottom entrance. Can't figure out why.

  5. #45
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Quote Originally Posted by Ian View Post
    What Im trying to say is that it really makes little difference as far as the bees are concerned. They deal the best with the home they find.
    I agree with you generally speaking. A hive can survive with almost any size entrance, from a tiny hole to being totally open to the air (as might be the case in an attic as long as they are sheltered.) But if you're trying to keep bees in a utilitarian hive and make honey out of the deal, entrance characteristics are somewhat more constrained.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    YANCEY CO., NC
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    I've got three supers(honey) that I had drilled a 7/16 hole in it last year and put them right above the queen excluder and they were barely used.This year I'm going to close off the front at least.And keep the excluder on at least untill they have one super of honey between the brood and the new supers of comb.And then remove the queenexcluders hopefully this will keep the queen down below.

  7. #47
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Sounds like a couple things converged to hose your honey production. First I'd say is that the bees either weren't such that make honey, or didn't have any honey to make. Are you opposed to not using excluders?
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    brownwood, TX, USA
    Posts
    843

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    I realize that there will be differences in the amount of honey produced by individual hives, but do some bee colonies just not produce any excess honey?

  9. #49
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Yes, there are colonies which simply do not produce any excess honey. All other things equal, few would hold it against you for requeening such a colony.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  10. #50
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,238

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Quote Originally Posted by lazy shooter View Post
    I realize that there will be differences in the amount of honey produced by individual hives, but do some bee colonies just not produce any excess honey?
    its all about the number of bees and the amount of nectar available to be gathered.
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  11. #51
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    YANCEY CO., NC
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Quote Originally Posted by Solomon Parker View Post
    Sounds like a couple things converged to hose your honey production. First I'd say is that the bees either weren't such that make honey, or didn't have any honey to make. Are you opposed to not using excluders?
    First of all everytime I tried not using excluders I always got brood in my honeycombs.Always!!Don't know if it was bad luck bad beekeeping or what I know know now to have a wall of honey and the queen will not pass hense the queenexcluder for the first super and then removing it for the rest of the crop.I live in a area with a good number of poplar trees and wild blackberrys for the spring honeycrop and about 26+ sourwood trees for the summercrop it could be my homegrown queens.I have some other queens Sunkist, Minn-hygenic most of my flock are Italian based local stock.I'm going to feed and give pollen this spring and see if this helps.Alot of my hives last year just didn't have the bees they needed to make honey even though I did keep them from swarming.

  12. #52
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,238

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    your not the only one, queens love to move up !
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

  13. #53
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Erin, NY /Florence SC
    Posts
    3,361

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    We use queen excluders because we don't want brood in our honey supers then jog the 2nd honey super back 1/2 inch so the bees have an upper entrance. Reduces crowding in the broood chamber so helps control swarming, speeds up honey getting into surplus storage and allows better ventilation during honey flows.

  14. #54
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Shoshone County, Idaho
    Posts
    567

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    I place the honey supers that get brood in them on the very top when adding more supers and let the brood hatch out above the honey ceiling. Once they hatch out the workers will fill the open spaces where the brood hatched out with honey.
    I do use excluders on my comb honey boxes!~
    Hugus Creek Honey Farm: St. Maries, ID / Lewiston, ID
    Like us on Facebook

  15. #55
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    I just don't harvest frames with brood in them unless it's just a little drone brood. None of my frames are sacred as drone or honey frames. Usually honey frames are just brood frames that have loads of drone and have been moved up.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  16. #56
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Blacksburg, VA
    Posts
    447

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Quote Originally Posted by Mtn. Bee View Post
    I went to all upper entrances on my 4-way pallets last spring

    and the upper entrance is part of the rim on my migratory covers.
    Mtn- Can you share a picture of what this setup looks like? Is the entire front open and how much? Thanks.

  17. #57
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,113

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    If you download the full res version of the picture on the front page of my website (parkerfarms.biz), you can see 2.5 versions of my upper entrances. The first is a shim made of 3/4" material with a landing board that I have taken to use as an awning. That is on the two leftmost hives. The foremost hive uses one as a bottom entrance. Across the front row, you can see upper entrances of the Michael Bush style, using a shim glued to a piece of plywood. The foremost hive has one made from an old billboard, and the other two have one made of plywood that I happened to have that was cut with a 45 degree edge. In the very back is a hive with an upper entrance of the style of an inner cover with a small bee escape slot cut in the front.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  18. #58
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    YANCEY CO., NC
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    The last time I didn't use a queen excluder when I went to take honey off I had brood in almost every frame made me sick also had permacomb she really liked them frames.

  19. #59
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Shoshone County, Idaho
    Posts
    567

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    Quote Originally Posted by rkereid View Post
    Mtn- Can you share a picture of what this setup looks like? Is the entire front open and how much? Thanks.

    Sure can here you go check pics below!

    http://i1305.photobucket.com/albums/...psb5cc4bf2.jpg

    http://i1305.photobucket.com/albums/...ps253749d8.jpg

    http://i1305.photobucket.com/albums/...ps83a31aa6.jpg

    http://i1305.photobucket.com/albums/...psfb23b71d.jpg
    Hugus Creek Honey Farm: St. Maries, ID / Lewiston, ID
    Like us on Facebook

  20. #60
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    6,238

    Default Re: Upper entrances, nature and IPM

    love the pics, cant wait til spring !
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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