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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
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    3,035

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    I would think you could use as few as four or five differing patterns, and it really only would help for densely-populated yards with few landmarks for the bees to orient on. I guess I'd consider them if I had rows of hives that are otherwise undifferentiated, but breaking up the hives into clumps and using the landscape to help them orient should reduce drifting with a lot less labor. Something as easy as a shrub, fence post, stump, jerrycan on top of a colony, anything really would help them visually orient more accurately. Unless your colony records just have to say "colony #3, path four, county highway 7 outyard" .
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  2. #22

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    So if I reverse my boxes or put the boxe on the stack backwards I mess up the paint scheme and the bees will get lost? Maybe a reason to keep the boxes similar in color and use blocks or hand on shapes near the entrance. I've always wondered about the bees returning after I've added 2-3 new supers. Do they notice the new height of their home?

    Good luck!

    Pete0
    Bena, VA

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,035

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pete0 View Post
    So if I reverse my boxes or put the boxe on the stack backwards I mess up the paint scheme and the bees will get lost?
    Pete0
    Bena, VA
    Not really. Bees orient on location by nearby landmarks and overall shape much more than by "street address" detail on the entrance, though it's a factor. I think these shape schemes, though for sure based on orientation data that bees do use, is a lot less important than having colonies whose placement allow bees to orient on the "big picture". It's be like if your house numbers disappeared, or your door was a different style, you would scratch your head for a minute but still know which house was yours. Unless you lived in McTownhome-ville and there were 20 blocks of identical houses lined up, which we do to bees in large apiaries of straight rows out in the middle of an undifferentiated field. Does that make sense?
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

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