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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Mt Juliet TN USA
    Posts
    131

    Default Obervation Hive and SHB

    I'm thinking seriously about starting an Observation hive. And there is a question that after looking through these post I haven't seen dealt with. And that is. Do the bees have trouble dealing with SHB in the observation hive?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lake county, Indiana 46408-4109
    Posts
    3,536

    Default Re: Obervation Hive and SHB

    The SHBs live with the bees in my O`hive but I have never seen a SHB larva, this year I put small pieces of "Checkmite" in the hive and I see no adults SO FAR
    Ed, KA9CTT profanity is IGNORANCE made audible
    you can`t fix stupid not even with duct tape

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, North Carolina
    Posts
    2,713

    Default Re: Obervation Hive and SHB

    As long as the interior dimensions of the hive are right, you won't have a problem with SHB. They will be present, like they are in any hive in your area, but as long as proper bee space is maintained, the bees will remove any larvae that hatch, just like they do in a normal hive.

    I've had about 6 different OH over the years. One year I had a problem with SHB, but it was my fault. It was a 3 deep frame hive, and I needed to pack it up for a few days for a show at an elementary school. Knowing they would be shut in for a few days, I gave them some pollen sub inside the hive, and a feeder w/ 1:1. The Sub ended up preventing the bees from being able to patrol between the sub and the glass, and the beetles made quick work of it. I had to wait till the show was over to open it up and remove the larvae. Two of the frames were unusable. They would have collapsed if I didn't remove them (but they probably would have been able to remove the larvae if I hadn't put the sub in and shut them up).

    Other than that, I've had no problems with SHB in OHs.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Lee\'s Summit, MO
    Posts
    1,279

    Default Re: Obervation Hive and SHB

    I've only had one OB hive but it's going into it 4th or 5th year. There are a couple of SHB's in there and I only had trouble once. It was early spring, a weakened population that was working the upper middle 2 frames of brood in a 5 frame hive. The bottom was unpatrolled and eggs hatched in the over winter debris. I took me a few days to figure out what was happening. I opened the OB hive, cleaned out the debris and the larva living in it. The hive kept chugging along like nothing happened. However, I really question if they would have been able to overcome it without the intervention.

    I assume you are an experienced beekeeper. If so keep an eye on them to keep the population high, but not so high they swarm, and you should be fine. If not get a year or two under your belt so you know how to read challenges as they arise. My 2-cents may be overpriced but I couldn't have effectively handled an OB hive without prior experience.
    Ninja, is not in the dictionary. Well played Ninja's, well played...

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,290

    Default Re: Obervation Hive and SHB

    It is trickier maintaining a consistent population in an observation hive. They tend to boom and bust. If they bust, the hive beetles can take over quickly. You need to try to prevent them having a low population. There are several ways to boost it, but about the simplest is to shake some nurse bees in a box with a round hole in the box to match up to the tube on the observation hive. Then you put the box on the end of the tube and let them move in.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Whitla Ab. Canada
    Posts
    334

    Default Re: Obervation Hive and SHB

    Quote Originally Posted by sterling View Post
    I'm thinking seriously about starting an Observation hive. And there is a question that after looking through these post I haven't seen dealt with. And that is. Do the bees have trouble dealing with SHB in the observation hive?
    Here is a video by Arvin Pierce where he has this problem. Arvin has the most fantastic voice as he narrates. I watch his vids not only for info but also just to listen to his narration.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=czJyW...=share&index=1
    A Bank is a place where they lend you an umbrella in fair weather and ask for it back when it rains.- Robert Frost

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