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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Willington, CT USA
    Posts
    414

    Question Removing entrance reducer

    I had a robbing episode occurr during my hive inspections last week. This plus unseasonably cold weather on the way caused me to feed the weak hive and put entrance reducers on all 3 of my hives (3 inch opening). The next few days are going back up into the 90's.

    Should I remove the reducer from all hives or continue to leave it on the weak one? I was going to pull from the strong hives tonight but lots of bees out on the entrance.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Vrises, Crete, Greece
    Posts
    39

    Default

    We've been looking after a weak hive all this summer and had a reducer on giving an entrance of around 5 inches to protect against wasps. We've had temperatures above 40 deg C and no problems. We looked for any signs of the bees being too hot but they were ok. We figured that a weak hive won't generate as much heat as a strong one and it will ventilate better because there are less bodies inside. Also our hive is in dappled shade under an oak.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Washington County, Maine
    Posts
    2,443

    Default Leave them in

    As an experiment this summer I left the entrance reducers in on three of my hives - open about 3". Those have been my most productive hives. Granted, here in Maine we haven't had much in the way of really hot temperatures. I don't get to check these hives more than every couple of weeks, but thus far the bees seem quite happy. Last week they were supered after finishing 4 weeks w/ Apiguard. Lots of bees. I harvested a decent amount from them mid July.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Default

    If there is a fall flow, I'd pull the reducers. If it's a dearth I prefer to have them on all the hives as it slows down the robbers taking things home as well as getting into the hives they want to rob.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Loudon Tn USA
    Posts
    46

    Default

    I knocked over a gal of syrup today and broke my jar. Syrup spilled right in front of the split that I had it on. I already had the entrance reduced down to 3". I went back out and looked at it about an hour later and the bees were in a frenzy. There was lots of activity at the entrance of that hive. I reduced it down to 1.5" and put entrance reducers on my other 3 hives. I hope this stops the robbing that I think just got started. I will leave the reducers on at least until the fall flow starts.
    By the way, in my area the bees just started working the coke cans. Yesterday was the first time I noticed it anyway. I guess we won't have anything for the bees to work until the goldenrod starts to bloom.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Willington, CT USA
    Posts
    414

    Default

    Thanks for the information. My plan is to use the reducers as situations warrant. This a.m. I removed from my strongest hive given the amount of activity going in and out. Luckily I have only three hives and they are in my yard. Very easy to observe activity.

    Skid - watch the yellow jacket activity on that spill area. Last week I spilled a little syrup and it drew tons of yellow jackets. I even sponged off the hive and poured a pail of water on the spill area and they kept coming back.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Loudon Tn USA
    Posts
    46

    Default

    Benton, thanks for the tip about the yellowjackets. I'll watch out for them.
    I wondered if I should try to wet the area down and try to dilute or wash away the syurp. I decided to let it alone. I hope I did the right thing

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