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Thread: Top entrance?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Hudson Valley, NY
    Posts
    14

    Default Top entrance?

    I'm getting bees and hive this year and I like the idea of a top entrance for all the reasons Michael Bush gives, do I have to use a screened bottom board with the top entrance to ensure proper ventilation or can I use a solid board. If yes, do you leave the screened board in for the winter also??

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Baker Oregon
    Posts
    2,367

    Default Re: Top entrance?

    I am moving away from the SBB's. I think in a cold winter they are detrimental to the colony. I also run top entrances, but have had problems with the bees staying high in the hive and not filling in the bottom deep. I am thinking of using a side (front) entrance in the bottom deep to encourage them to brood in the bottom deep. Bottom entrances are not an option with the skunk population.
    Dan Hayden 4 Years. 9 hives. Tx Free. USDA Zone 5b.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Big Stone Gap, VA
    Posts
    914

    Default Re: Top entrance?

    Quote Originally Posted by blasket View Post
    ... do I have to use a screened bottom board with the top entrance to ensure proper ventilation or can I use a solid board. If yes, do you leave the screened board in for the winter also??
    I am also moving away from screened bottom boards, at least in the winter. Our winters are cool and damp. If the hive gets cold AND wet, the bees will die. On the SBBs I have in place, I will swap them out for solids for the winters.

    A lot of beeks, if not most, run SBBs. They typically leave the SBBs on for the winter, and just place a plastic board to close them off.

    I have had water get trapped in by this board and kill a hive. For me, I plan to overwinter with solid boards.

    HTH,
    Shane

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Knox Co, Ohio, USA
    Posts
    775

    Default Re: Top entrance?

    I have top entrances and screened bottom boards. Like others have mentioned, I am moving away from SBB's. In the winter I typically close the bottoms. Although, I had one hot hive this year that came out to greet me while I was closing the neighboring hive. I left the bottom open. At last visit their were doing great.

    I want uniform equiment and have skunks at one yard so I went to top entrances. While increased ventilation may help with drying down nectar I don't think they need, or like all the ventilation we give them.

    Tom

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,464

    Default Re: Top entrance?

    >do I have to use a screened bottom board with the top entrance to ensure proper ventilation

    No.

    > or can I use a solid board.

    Yes.

    > If yes, do you leave the screened board in for the winter also??

    When I use a SBB I put a tray in or something to block the wind blowing in. At least I always intend to.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

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