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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Frederick, MD, USA
    Posts
    13

    Default skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    I had a skunk eating my bees until I modified my hives for a top entrance. Now I need to give them a fall feeding.

    I actually have it all ready to go in top feeders, only now I just realized I didn't plan on how to use a top feeder and a top entrance at the same time.

    I read that a top entrance with a top feeder encourages robbing. And the way I put in the top entrance doesn't allow me to neatly stack the top feeder onto it.

    So... what do I do? I'm nervous that opening the bottom entrance again will invite the skunk back.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    3,430

    Default Re: skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    If you have an inner cover put it between the top box and the feeder, with the notch facing down which they will use as their entrance. Put your outer cover on top of the feeder and seal it off temporarily while you are feeding so no bees can get in. Duct tape works well.
    To everything there is a season....

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Iona, Idaho, USA
    Posts
    95

    Default Re: skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    Some will drill a hole in their box to create a new opening or vent. I kind of hate putting holes in my boxes.

    I believe that some will make a shim about 3/4" and drill a hole in that to create a opening wherever they want to put it. That would work like the top cover idea, but you would not have the cover part of it to make a division in the hive so you could have it between boxes.

    That may mess with bee space so you may get a little wonky comb between the boxes doing that.


    Clay

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    967

    Default Re: skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    Concerning robbing:

    If you use the notched inner cover as a top entrance and place it above the feeder, you are inviting robbing.

    I suggest making a 3/8" shim that fits between the feeder and your topbox, with a space an inch or three wide as an entrance.
    For a robbing screen, cut a piece of window screen a three or four inches wider than your new top entrance.

    Lay the bottom of the screen between the shim and top box, then put your feeder on top of the shim.

    Then fold the screen up, leaving space for the bees to go out the sides of the screen after coming out the top entrance, and duct tape or staple it to the front face of the feeder.

    This is simple, effective, and very inexpensive.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Lemont, Il U.S.A.
    Posts
    126

    Default Re: skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    Get your hive a foot off the ground. No more skunk problems. Open your bottom entrance again. Feed as you wish. Live happily ever after.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Massillon, Ohio
    Posts
    3,430

    Default Re: skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    Skunks are 13"-18" long, excluding the tail. What's to stop them from raising up and smashing bees on the bottom board if it's only raised 12"?
    To everything there is a season....

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    McClure, OH
    Posts
    1,017

    Default Re: skunks, top entrance, top feeder?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Gillmore View Post
    Skunks are 13"-18" long, excluding the tail. What's to stop them from raising up and smashing bees on the bottom board if it's only raised 12"?
    They don't like to stand up as it exposes the belly for stings.

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