IMO, this entrance requires 1/2 inch screen.Update, first prototype completed:
- The main body is just essentially an enclosed case with removable front, back, and bottom panels (scroll down and you can see the design in the sketchup pic in the thread below
- The "porch" is a staging area behind the front panel (removed in the picture), then the bees will hover upward into the hive
- Not shown, but I'll cut out a bit from the slatted racks in the entrance area for better ability for the bees to land
- The porch has an integral screened jar trap. Hopefully SHB will be attracted to oil in the jar (or they can get pushed in by bees) and that's the first line of defense
- The vertical entrance is ringed by a section of aluminum flashing about 1/8" wider than the board, so it is difficult for them to try to walk in upside-down
- Once in, the bottom is screened by #8 hardware cloth, with a shallow pan of veg oil underneath, which is not normally accessible from anywhere (removable panels are covered)
- Good bee space and slatted racks should discourage building comb down into the entrance area
- Hole for OAV application is currently just under the top screen, but I may move it up above based on comments from other regarding condensation of the crystals into the screen
- Camo fabric applied over the box as an experiment, durability TBD
View attachment 54633
Interesting, I hadn't considered that, hungry critters can certainly be determined lol. Easy enough to put a 1/2" screen on the outside of the porch opening though, I'd rather keep the hover-area as clear as I can.
If you screen the porch opening - you then obstruct it for yourself (consider trying to clear the dead bees out of it).Interesting, I hadn't considered that, hungry critters can certainly be determined lol. Easy enough to put a 1/2" screen on the outside of the porch opening though, I'd rather keep the hover-area as clear as I can.
hockeyfan_019:Update, first prototype completed:
This was definitely part of the design considerations Greg... Since the front panel is removable, the top of the screen is accessible to a bent coat hanger to drag any corpses out, as well as out from inside the "porch". As you mentioned, the screen could be removed easily when it was stapled to the front panel for cleaning purposes.If you screen the porch opening - you then obstruct it for yourself (consider trying to clear the dead bees out of it).
I still like my proposal better (bees will not mind the screen over "hover area", pretty sure).
On the balance, the horizontal screen may get clogged by the dead bees too - still needs cleaning, but it can be done and not critical (see "upper entrance in winter).
PS: you can built-in the screen into the removable part - a consideration there, if really preferred.
Thanks Litsinger for your comments. I am simply hoping to come up with a design that helps the bees thrive, and helps me so I can focus more on other tasks that always seem to be necessary... Unfortunately it also seems that however successful any of our projects actually result, it's unlikely any of our beekeeping activities are likely to support anything like an electric car and space vehicle company anytime soon, so Elon is safe for now from any beekeeping competitionhockeyfan_019:
I am impressed that you have brought this thing from prototype to finished product, and I am interested to hear how this design works out for you.
I have found that slatted racks have virtually eliminated summer bearding in my locale, and when coupled with screened bottom boards, I have not noticed an increased SHB prevalence (though I was anticipating it).
One thing I have observed (at least here locally) you will either want to clean the area under the double screened portion routinely or have the means to affix an oil tray as SHB do have a field day with pollen debris that drops down below the screen- ask me how I know.
Do keep us posted how this works out for you- might be your ticket to your next million!
p.s. nice camo paint job...
This is funny- if nothing else you can maybe make a worthy contribution to the beekeeping community at-large. Per your comment below, people all over the lower 48 are singing the praises of Jerry Freeman for the SHB tray that now bears his name- they are quite an effective tool in helping to keep those pesky rascals knocked-down.... so Elon is safe for now from any beekeeping competition
Almost forgot, there is also a removable back panel, wherein a solid tray slides in, with a pan of veggie oil for the comfort of our SHB guests. Ideally they'll check in, but they'll never leave. The pan can be removed periodically to look for mite drops or just to monitor any other debris.
Interestingly, I'd never heard of the Jerry Freeman trap, but the design here uses essentially the same concept for the oil tray trap, so seems like it's already been tested with good results! Some folks on his sales page seem to have commented that #8 is too coarse for female SHB to fall through, so perhaps I will look for some a bit coarser like #7 or #6 to try out as well, as long as the bees can't get through it. I really like his trays though with the integral side flanges, the box can just have a shallow dado cut through the sides, and then the SHB can't find any safety by moving down the sides very close to the wall. With the entire "floor is lava" for them, it'll be lights out for sureThis is funny- if nothing else you can maybe make a worthy contribution to the beekeeping community at-large. Per your comment below, people all over the lower 48 are singing the praises of Jerry Freeman for the SHB tray that now bears his name- they are quite an effective tool in helping to keep those pesky rascals knocked-down.
I was gonna ask - are you sure you have SHB problem at your location?.... and my relatively colder climate here in Michigan will hopefully keep them in check. I am just trying to think of ways to help minimize the effort it may take them to perform the tasks. Thanks for all the helpful info