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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Arlington,TX
    Posts
    6

    Default Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    Which one is better front or side entrance to the top bar hive? With building a top bar hive and having front entrance do you still need to make dividers for the front and back or just the back? Also how do you feed the bees do you just stick jar of surger water and set it inside or does it need to be mounted inside?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Cassia, Idaho, USA
    Posts
    29

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    total newbeee here.....I don't know much and have only one hive I started last year.

    on the feeding.....I just put the jar of sugar water right behind the cluster after I installed em last year. Since then I haven't fed them again.

    I have a friend that also started a hive the same time as I did with a tbh and he had the wind blow over his hive during the winter cus a board of plywood pushed up against his hive.......anyhow, he had a mess of broken comb and ended up harvesting a lot of stores.......just a week ago we looked at em and they were totally empty on the stores and we put in a jar of sugar water inside right behind the last comb......they really wanted something to eat cus they marched right to it.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, USA
    Posts
    81

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I like to use a side entrance but place it towards either end rather than the center of the hive. With a front entrance you would only need one follower board, another reason that I like the additional flexibility that the side entrance offers (a bit easier to work from either end). For feeding syrup I have a spare follower board with a notch cut into the bottom of it that allows me to slide an entrance feeder into it. That way I can monitor the syrup level through the window and swap it out as needed without removing bars or disturbing the bees.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Weweantic, Massachusetts, USA
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I just use a top entrance. I simply leave a 1/2 space between the end of the hive and the first top bar and my lid is such that the bees have no problems streaming in and out. Also I haven't put any unwanted holes in my hives that I might regret later on

    Cheers

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,349

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    Not front or side, but top.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Santa Monica, CA, USA
    Posts
    1,496

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    Somebody on the Internet pointed out that if you are using side entrance, than mites from top part of the hive may accumulate at the entrance since bottom part of the hive is narrower than top. The idea is that side walls in TB are tilted and mites when fell, could "roll" down on the tilted wall and ended up at the entrance instead the bottom screen. When I built my TB (I prefer to call it Kenyan hive), I did not think about this and made nice side entrance close to one side. So, from this prospective, it looks like front entrance is better... Technically, there is not much difference between front entrance and side entrance if it is at the side. Some people drill a bunch of vine cork size holes everywhere and close unused entrances with vine corks... quite universal solution... Sergey

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
    Posts
    192

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    Some of the master beekeepers around here did an experiment. They put an entrance on the side at one end, and on the end. The bees preferred the one on the side. Now they always put them on the side. I have started just using top entrances, so I don't have to worry about entrances. Just slide the first bar over and it is done. So simple. The same beekeepers say putting an entrance in the middle of the side is unmanageable and suggest it never be done.

    Ted

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Reidsville, NC
    Posts
    114

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I use a front and top. Don’t like side because that is where I am standing.

    Just as a side note, I also started to use standard lang frames for a multitude of reasons and they have been doing great. I will try and get some pictures of my design on the site before long.
    Experience is better than theory.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,125

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    The main reason for a front entrance is that it prevents the cluster from being in the center with honey on both sides of it, which is a bad configuration going into winter. A hive in a cold climate will likely work it's way to one end, leaving stores at the other end and if a warm snap doesn't allow them to relocate to the end with stores, they will starve there.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    gordo, al
    Posts
    62

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    Mine are on the side. One hive entrance is centered, I dont like this one for the reason Michael states above. The other one is toward the end of the hive still on the side. The bees keep the broodnest near the entrances so you want it at one end for wintering purposes.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Portland, OR, USA
    Posts
    639

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I prefer side entrances at the end. I never start colonies in the middle for the reasons Michael mentioned.

    Best,
    Matt

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    North Wales, PA
    Posts
    13

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I am a newbie, with side entrances at the ends, do you leave both open or just one after bees are installed

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Albuquerque, New Mexico
    Posts
    192

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I would only leave one entrance to the hive open. It seems like the bees like to put their brood nest near the entrance, so having an entrance at each end would open up the hive for robbing and such, and make the hive much more difficult to defend. An entrance at each end is nice if you want to split the hive with a follower board and have two colonies in the same hive.
    Ted

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Grand Junction,Colorado, USA
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Top bar hive entrance front or side?

    I have 2 TBHs, one with a side entrance and one with an end entrance. We had a prolonged, very cold winter in western Colorado this year. There are many variables--hive location, stores, etc--but FWIW, the hive with the end entrance survived the winter and the one with the side entrance did not. I wonder if it is for the reason Micheal Bush stated.

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