for whatever reason, i had the top popped on one of my hives (my biggest) pretty high all winter, and the bees started coming and going through the top as well as the bottom. they actually seemed to prefer the top.
so this spring i bought a sundance II, and i was going to put it on this particular hive, since it's the strongest - and i figured since they were already using a top entrace it would easy to make the switch permanently. i left the reducer in the bottom, and a few days ago i closed it off completely.
and the bees went stupid on me. there has been almost zero activity from the hive since - i haven't seen anyone leave through the top, and the few bees i've seen returning to the hive refuse to go in the top - they just buzz around the (closed) bottom entrance. checked repeatedly to make sure the top wasn't blocked, and there were bees hanging around the hole in the inner cover, but nobody was actually going anywhere.
finally today i opened the bottom to check on them, and the instant the reducer was gone, bees came flooding out. they went nuts for awhile, bearding a little and orienting and dragging out their dead. i came back a bit later, and they were coming and going as usual - through the bottom AND the top.
any idea what's going on? i have an open, screened bottom on the hive, is it possible the light was screwing them up somehow, leading them to think there was still a bottom entrance? should i close it up for a few days, maybe? and even so, why would they only use the top if they can also use the bottom?
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