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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Atlanta GA
    Posts
    377

    Default Should I close up the entrace?

    Hi All:
    I looked at both my hives on Monday here in Atlanta when the temp was 65 and they were lining up to enter- it was a traffic jam with the bees brining in pollen. I had the entrance on the smallest opening. Since there was a traffic jam I decided to open up the entrance to the next largest (4 inch). Tonight it is supposed to freeze and I am worried that with the new entrance opening it may get too cold for them. What are your thoughts? Should I go put something in the entrance (maybe a piece of Styrofoam) to close it up a little to the original small opening or just leave well enough alone? It will be 27 degrees the next two nights. I always need to worry about something.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Rockford, MI
    Posts
    3,321

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    Leave it where it is at, the bees will be fine.

    No need to worry so much.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    jackson county, alabama, usa
    Posts
    5,547

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    i agree, they'll be fine. i did the same on a couple of mine yesterday. they should be going wide open next week.
    journaling the growth of a treatment free apiary started in 2010. 20+/- hives

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Atlanta GA
    Posts
    377

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    Thank you for your advice!

  5. #5

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    Sally, the only time I use reducers at all is if a colony is especially weak and getting robbed. Now...if we lived a thousand miles north....that'd be a different thing.
    Dan www.boogerhillbee.com
    Experience is a hard teacher because she gives the test first, the lesson afterwards

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    Rensselaer County, NY, USA
    Posts
    1,340

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    When it gets up to 27 degrees here my bees think it's timie to go out for a cleansing flight.

    However, for your information in the future should you wish to reduce the size of the entrance hole, a simple piece of corrugated cardboard held in place with thumb tacks or pushpins would be adequate. Wouln't be strong enough to keep mice out in the winter, but would fine for what you were considering.

    Traffic jams at the entrance hole are rarely as serious as they seem. Last summer I had an enormous hive hive of two deeps plus five mediums and they needed only one 1" round hole. Larger entrances may risk robbing if your nectar flow drops off while your colony is still new and smallish. Keep an eye peeled for that.

    In fact, the very best learning tool for a new beekeeper is a comfortable chair placed close enough so you can sit and watch the bees come and go as often as you can. Just going out to take a quick look won't train your eyes (and ears) fast enough to begin notice any changes from the ordinary. And nothing is so deeply relaxing as an hour sent sitting by your hives - I often fall fast asleep.

    Enj.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Location
    Frankfort, Ohio
    Posts
    832

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    I leave the entrances on the larger opening all year long. If the colony is a newly installed split or getting robbed I will close the entrance down some. We just got hammered with a snow storm, -5 degrees tonight, and screened bottoms still wide open as well. The bees will be fine.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    48,782

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    You are in Atlanta GA... I don't think you've ever had any weather I would consider "cold". The bees will be fine. Let me put it this way... it was 4 F this morning and I wasn't thinking about which hives had reduced entrances and which did not...
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Nov 2014
    Location
    Monroe County, PA, USA
    Posts
    96

    Default Re: Should I close up the entrace?

    Quote Originally Posted by SallyD View Post
    Hi All:
    I looked at both my hives on Monday here in Atlanta when the temp was 65 and they were lining up to enter- it was a traffic jam with the bees brining in pollen. I had the entrance on the smallest opening. Since there was a traffic jam I decided to open up the entrance to the next largest (4 inch). Tonight it is supposed to freeze and I am worried that with the new entrance opening it may get too cold for them. What are your thoughts? Should I go put something in the entrance (maybe a piece of Styrofoam) to close it up a little to the original small opening or just leave well enough alone? It will be 27 degrees the next two nights. I always need to worry about something.
    To many of us a high 32 is would be nice a low of 32 would be heaven.

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