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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    torrington,ct usa
    Posts
    109

    Default top entrance concerns

    I'm going to try the top entrance route and was thinking -When I have opened the hives in the past with bottom entrances the bees returning from forageing still had access to the hive through the bottom. What happens when the top entrance is gone? Do they patiently wait until I'm done or will they go into the adjacent hives top entrance( my hives are inches apart). I also use poly hive top feeders and was wondering if robbing would be an issue with the upper entrance. I will put the entrance to the feeder to the back of the hive but will this be enough. I'm installing packages in new hive with no drawn comb so I'll be feeding them for a while.Thanks in advance Jason

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    College Station, Texas
    Posts
    6,985

    Default

    jason ask:
    What happens when the top entrance is gone?

    tecumseh replies:
    when you change entrance configuration the bees generally are confused a while, setting down where they think the entrance should be, wander around till they find the new entrance and eventually adjust (this may take several hours) to the new set up.

    then jason sezs:
    I also use poly hive top feeders and was wondering if robbing would be an issue with the upper entrance.

    tecumseh replies:
    poly hives I am largely unfamilar with first of all. however robbing is largely dependent on what kind of feeder you might use (an enclosed internal feeder is best-if the upper entrance goes into the feeder well you would want to close this off) . for small fragile packages you will need to reduce 'primary' entrance no matter what.... to limit robbing plus for any potential cold nights.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,033

    Default

    I am wondering if you are saying that you have concerns the bees will not be able to find and enter their hives without a bottom entrance, while you have their top entrance out of place during an inspection.

    My experience with top/upper entrance hives is very similar to hives with bottom entrances. When I begin disassembling the hive, in order to examine what is happening inside, I find that many of the returning field bees hesitate and take a holding pattern, but eventually I find that most soon begin landing in the closest spot to where their entrance was, usually at the front edge of the super that is still in its normal alignment. Different hives do show differences in this behavior - some reorient right away, others seem to take a while longer.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    torrington,ct usa
    Posts
    109

    Default

    The polystyrene hive top feeder is an internal feeder with its entrance being a long slit on one end of the under side.Robbers would have to cross the length of the super to get in if I have that slit on the back of the hive. My hive are all new and painted identical and about 3 inches apart(unavoidable).So my thought was that they would assume the adjacent hive was thiers.I guess this doe not matter as log as things balance out after I have left. Thanks for the replies.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    43,492

    Default

    In my experience they do the same thing either way (top or bottom entrance). They come back to the hive which is either shorter, because you removed some boxes, or it's got this tall white thing (a beekeeper) next to it which is confusing. Either way they tend to circle to try to figure out what's up and then they usually fly into the hive from the direction they are in the habit of (top or bottom).

    In the end there are always a few confused bees circling, but not that many.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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