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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Posts
    130

    Default Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    I'm considering building a 8 to 10 frame observation hive but I keep running into problems with where to run the exit/entrance. All the windows will put the opening near walkways and I'm not real keen about putting a hole through an exterior wall so I'm considering running a vertical flexible tubing along the route of a vent pipe that is directly next to where the hive would go (in the interior wall.) It exists cleanly through the roof and would put the opening nice and far from any people. I've seen some posts on the forums about running twine or string through excessively long entrances to help the bees climb up but I'm wondering if they will be able to haul dead bees that far vertically. So, two questions:

    1. Could workers lift or drag dead bees 20-25 feet up a tube?


    2. If not, would it be feasible to to make a junction box at the base of the tube where it connects to the hive for cleaning out the dead? (Think of an "L" where there is a small hinged box at the angle which could serve as a graveyard and clean-out station."

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Hot Springs, Arkansas
    Posts
    306

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    1. horrible plan, no way 20-25 feet
    2. no, you will be too lazy to do it

    just go to bonterra bees and order their plans, no since in reinventing the wheel, you'll make too many mistakes along the way is my prediction.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Posts
    130

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingbrass View Post
    1. horrible plan, no way 20-25 feet
    2. no, you will be too lazy to do it

    just go to bonterra bees and order their plans, no since in reinventing the wheel, you'll make too many mistakes along the way is my prediction.
    Thanks for your input. It really isn't an issue of the observation hive construction itself. Just the location of the entrance and not having any direct routes out a window available. Whether its Bonterra, Ulster, custom...I'm still going to run into the same location issue.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    6,191

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    My suggestion is to just cut the hole in the wall and be done with it. If you are concerned about how to patch the hole when the OH is eventually removed, just disguise it as something else. You could make the hole suitable such that a dryer vent housing fits the hole. Once the OH is removed, plug the hole and mount the dryer vent exterior housing to disguise the hole.
    Graham
    USDA Zone 7A Elevation 1400 ft

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Posts
    130

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    Quote Originally Posted by flyingbrass View Post
    1. horrible plan, no way 20-25 feet
    2. no, you will be too lazy to do it

    just go to bonterra bees and order their plans, no since in reinventing the wheel, you'll make too many mistakes along the way is my prediction.
    Thanks for your input. It really isn't an issue of the observation hive construction itself. Just the location of the entrance and not having any direct routes out a window available. Whether its Bonterra, Ulster, custom...I'm still going to run into the same location issue. My idea actually came from this thread http://www.beesource.com/forums/show...servation-hive so it appears it has been done but I'm not sure if I want to risk a failure on it.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Waterville, NY
    Posts
    121

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    Hi Ambassador
    I just finished building an observation hive and plan to put it in my workshop. From my research I am of the opinion that the entrance/exit tube should be just a foot or two in length. Having said that, may I suggest attaching some kind of "fencing" around the outside opening that will direct the bees flight path up and over your area of concern. It could be as simple as drapping fabric on a frame, or as complicated as building a brick wall.....anything that will keep their flight path from occupying the same space as people walking.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Vermontville, Michigan
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    I think they might have some trouble navigating that. Do you have the option of running out a window and then running the hose either up a few feet, or coming out and running horizontally a few to get them farther from a walkway? You want to keep the hose as short as possible, so if you could use a top entrance, go out the top of the window, and then run the hose up 2-3 feet, that should keep them pretty well above people's heads. Obviously I don't know the layout of your house, but hopefully that will work for you. I just think running the hose/tube that far is disaster waiting.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    Posts
    130

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    Quote Originally Posted by bobbarker View Post
    I think they might have some trouble navigating that. Do you have the option of running out a window and then running the hose either up a few feet, or coming out and running horizontally a few to get them farther from a walkway? You want to keep the hose as short as possible, so if you could use a top entrance, go out the top of the window, and then run the hose up 2-3 feet, that should keep them pretty well above people's heads. Obviously I don't know the layout of your house, but hopefully that will work for you. I just think running the hose/tube that far is disaster waiting.
    We have a 2/12 pitch roof with large cantilevered overhangs that extend 3 feet beyond the exterior walls on 90% of the house. Even if I could convince my wife to let me run it out the window the overhang automatically creates a low point that I am thinking would deflect the bees down towards walkways. Part of my motivation is also to not make it obvious to neighbors that there are bees coming and going.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Waterville, NY
    Posts
    121

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    Sounds like you have to get real creative...or just admit that not all places are suitable for an observation hive. One last point .... Last year I had a severe robbing problem at one of my hives. Just reducing the entrance did very little to remedy the problem..so..I had to use the wet sheet method (covering the hive with a wet, white sheet drapping it all the way to the ground. Of course the concern is how are the bees going to navigate in to and out of the hive. "The sheet drapes to the ground and prevents robbing bees from getting into the entrance. The bees in the hive seem to be able to find their way in and out." (Blackiston, 2009). In my case, the bees had remarkable navigational skills.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Flora,IL
    Posts
    2,644

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    you mention to close for the entrance... good gentle bees wont care if your 6 feet away. I have hives right next to the patio so I can watch them work, and no one has been stung in 3 years..... distance... right at 5 feet.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,212

    Default Re: Observation Hive with vertical 20-25ft exit tube?

    The shorter the better and 25 feet is not very short... I have seen observation hives with fairly long tubes that were working, but in my experience, it's hard to get them to find their way out when they are very long.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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