Do bees eat blueboard insulation?
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Killington,VT
    Posts
    143

    Default Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    I have a double deep hive with seven over seven frames being used by the bees, and I was wondering if I could remove four empty frames on one side and replace them with a blue board division board/filler. This would make an eight over eight more compact hive with room for more stores before winter. My thinking is that five over five double nucs are used to overwinter with success, and my rearranged eight over eight "double nuc" might survive better than if I left it as it is. Any thoughts appreciated. Thanks. Paul
    Zone 4a-b

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Glennville, Georgia, USA
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    66

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    I don't have any experience using blueboard insulation in my hives, but the bees may chew it up to remove it from the hive. Try it and let us know how it works. You may could even overlay it with a plastic veneer to deter the bees from chewing the styrofoam.

    Garrett

  4. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,373

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    They will, most likely, promptly begin chewing it into little pieces and removing them from the hive. It makes an interesting noise, sorta like a loud crackling or rustling of paper, sound. Covering it with a film of plastic, wood, or other surfaces known to resist bee gnawing. Cardboard is another surface that is also prone to bees gnawing it to bits, but it usually last a little longer than polystyrene.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  5. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    Winter Park, Florida
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    The bees will definitely chew up styrofoam or rigid insulation. I have tried both. You need High Density Polystyrene or something with a similar density to prevent the bees from chewing through it.

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Arlee MT USA
    Posts
    547

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    You could try the foil backed kind.

    Will they do it if its not in their hive but around it? I'm planning on making a blueboard box that sets over my hives for winter with a half inch gap around the hive bodies so that any condensation will form on the blueboard and run down instead of forming in my hives.

  7. #6
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Hampton CT
    Posts
    358

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    Try putting a peice of plywood between the bees and the insulation. Use of a follower board is a good idea. This not a new idea, 100 years ago they were used just like you plan to contract the cluster around the available honey. A variation of this is also used in Top Bar Hives. In the winter, Bees move up more readily than sideways.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Winhall, VT
    Posts
    1,057

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    They will eat blue board insulation. You could glue a piece of masonite to it using foam adhesive.
    Raising Vermont Bees one mistake at a time.
    USDA Zone 5A

  9. #8
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Killington,VT
    Posts
    143

    Default Re: Do bees eat blueboard insulation?

    Thanks for the replies. I think I'll make a division board of masonite or thin plywood sandwiched with the blueboard in between. I've used blueboard on the outside of the hive loosely wrapped with tar paper with good results. I just thought that this option might keep things more contained, be more flexible, and pretty easy to construct. I think I'll use the double sided foam board so that I can have a double nuc arrangement with bees on both sides if it makes sense at some future time. My hives generally have a North/South orientation. I'll need to see how thick a division board is possible and practical; it may be that a solid wood one is just as good. Paul
    Zone 4a-b

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