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Hello, I work at a public Science Museum, and we are building an observation hive for patrons to view the bees and see how a live hive works. However we have heard from one of the people who is helping us build the hive that we need a special kind of tint on the glass so that it doesn't confuse the bees, and they are able to escape properly to the outside world. I've called a couple of automotive tinting shops and they weren't sure what kind of tinting should be use, as most of the tinting they use it has to be lighter on the inside of the hive than the outside of the hive. I'm curious what is typically used for this purpose to help the bees be happy and survive through the winter. Any help would be most appreciated.
 

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That’s a new one on me. I’ve never heard of tinted glass in an observation hive and I own several. I used clear polycarbonate sheeting when I custom built my big one. If the hive is inside and not in direct sunlight (which would heat it up tremendously and cause them to abscond) the only issue you should have with light is them being able to find the exit. They are photosensitive when they reach that stage in life when they try to find the way out. As long as the exit is easy to find and navigate out of, they usually find their way out without any problem. The bigger issue is usually ventilation: too much or too little and they can’t rear brood. You don’t want to have a wind tunnel effect. It is good to make it so you can adjust the ventilation as necessary.
 
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