Need Bees Removed?
International
Beekeeping Forums
October 23, 2014, 12:03:51 PM *
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
Did you miss your activation email?

Login with username, password and session length
News: Beemaster's official FACEBOOK page
 
   Home   Help Search Calendar bee removal Login Register Chat  

Pages: [1] 2  All   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: Clustering under screen  (Read 1257 times)
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« on: July 19, 2013, 09:44:43 AM »

I've got screened bottom boards on both of my hives, and I removed the sticky boards when the weather got hot to create a little more air flow. Now both hives are clustering under the screen (that is, outside the hive, as it were). Is this something I should concern myself with, or will this correct itself?
Logged
sc-bee
Super Bee
*****
Online Online

Posts: 1971


Location: Edgefield, SC


« Reply #1 on: July 19, 2013, 10:12:56 AM »

I have never had that problem, It is probably because my hives are so low to the ground. How is your room situation (crowded?) inside the hive? If not crowded inside I would say no problem as it would be similar to bearding. But I wait to hear others answers that have experienced it.

There was someone on here a short few ago that was having this problem because of a queen that keep hanging out underneath for some reason. But no reason for you to suspect that. In particular because you are talking both hives
Logged

John 3:16
cdevier
New Bee
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 8

Location: Mid Missouri


« Reply #2 on: July 19, 2013, 11:41:49 AM »

Several of my hives are doing the same thng.  I do not see it as a problem.
 Charlie

13 hives   zone 5
Logged
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« Reply #3 on: July 19, 2013, 11:43:25 AM »

Below are images of my east hive, both the front and under the hive. The east hive started out the weaker of the two hives and is now stronger. No clue why. I'm using all mediums and put a fifth medium on the east hive a week ago. The west hive was still working on filling out comb when I checked a week ago and had plans to add a fifth medium this weekend. These packages were installed on April 15 on all new equipment and foundation.

The daytime highs have been in the low 90s/high 80s, and the lows at night in the high 40s/low 50s. It was 52 when I got up this morning at six o'clock. It was about six-thirty this morning when I snapped these photos. The small cluster in the lower middle portion of the robbing screen on the east hive was that way--out front and outside--all night.

I added the robbing screens about a week and a half ago due to a mixture of ignorance, paranoia, learning that our flow ended in June, and what I believe now is confusing robbing for active hives orienting.

The first two images are of the east hive, front and under, and the last two of the west hive, front and under.








« Last Edit: July 19, 2013, 01:53:00 PM by Palouse » Logged
cdevier
New Bee
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 8

Location: Mid Missouri


« Reply #4 on: July 19, 2013, 11:59:19 AM »

I have also started using robber screens -after lossing 8 nucs to robbing last summer.  I think that they work great but some bees must be smarter than others.  I have watched a bee walk aroound for 5 minutes before finding the hole.
  Perhaps - if robber bees cannot find their way in - that some of the house bees cannot either.  I installed my screens in the early morning - making sure that all the bees were inside and then would have to find their way out.
  I now have put several holes in my robber screens - two next to the hive body and two next to the screen.  The bes almost always go out the holes next to the screen and return in the hole next to the hive.
Charlie

13 hives   zone 5
Logged
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« Reply #5 on: July 19, 2013, 12:06:25 PM »


  Perhaps - if robber bees cannot find their way in - that some of the house bees cannot either.
Charlie

13 hives   zone 5

I put the robbing screens on in the dead of night with a flashlight to avoid any foragers coming back and not being able to figure it out. However, I put the robbing screens on before I took out the sticky boards below the screens, and I didn't have this going on (at least that I was aware of) until I the sticky boards were removed. If I try to put the sticky boards back, I'll disrupt the clusters and trap a whole lot of bees.
Logged
BlueBee
Galactic Bee
******
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 4262

Location: Mid Michigan


« Reply #6 on: July 19, 2013, 12:51:41 PM »

Iíve had this happen before.  I donít know if itís a problem or not.  If you want to get these bees off the bottom screen and re-install the sticky boards I do know how to accomplish that.  Lots and LOTs of smoke. 
Logged
sc-bee
Super Bee
*****
Online Online

Posts: 1971


Location: Edgefield, SC


« Reply #7 on: July 19, 2013, 01:03:14 PM »

I don't see what you have as a problem. Probably easier for them to go underneath to communicate than navigate the robber screen when the hive is busy. If I had no robbing problem I would lose the screens, no need for them. Especially since you now recognize the orienting. Just one opinion............
Logged

John 3:16
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« Reply #8 on: July 19, 2013, 02:01:43 PM »

Much thanks for the feedback.

I was just looking at the photos again, and my heart skipped a beat: you don't reckon the queen is in the cluster outside the hive, do you? I've never taken the whole hive apart, but I think I might want to do that this weekend.
Logged
sc-bee
Super Bee
*****
Online Online

Posts: 1971


Location: Edgefield, SC


« Reply #9 on: July 19, 2013, 02:54:42 PM »

Much thanks for the feedback.

I was just looking at the photos again, and my heart skipped a beat: you don't reckon the queen is in the cluster outside the hive, do you? I've never taken the whole hive apart, but I think I might want to do that this weekend.

Totally don't think so. I should not have even mentioned it  grin Relax sure it is just the heat. Or, if you have never broken it down you may be out of room inside. Take the robbing screens off IMO unles you really feel you had robbing issues.
Logged

John 3:16
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« Reply #10 on: July 19, 2013, 05:37:21 PM »

Thanks to everyone for the help.

I'll take the robbing screens off tonight, and I'm going to dig all the way down Saturday morning.
Logged
RC
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 244

Location: Perry, Fl


« Reply #11 on: July 19, 2013, 05:44:39 PM »

The queen is reluctant to lay near the open screen bottom boards, because of the difficulty in controlling the temperature there. When you had the bottoms closed up with the sticky boards, you stopped the draft. The queen layed near the bottom boards. You pulled the sticky boards and caused a draft.Now the bees are clustering underneath to stop the draft. After the brood near the bottom board hatches out, the bees will stop clustering underneath the bottom. And the queen will not lay near the bottom.
It does not matter if you think it's hot or cold, it has to do with the temperature the bees have acclimated to and how the broodnest is arranged in the hive.
Logged
sc-bee
Super Bee
*****
Online Online

Posts: 1971


Location: Edgefield, SC


« Reply #12 on: July 20, 2013, 12:31:07 AM »

The queen is reluctant to lay near the open screen bottom boards, because of the difficulty in controlling the temperature there. When you had the bottoms closed up with the sticky boards, you stopped the draft. The queen layed near the bottom boards. You pulled the sticky boards and caused a draft.Now the bees are clustering underneath to stop the draft. After the brood near the bottom board hatches out, the bees will stop clustering underneath the bottom. And the queen will not lay near the bottom.
It does not matter if you think it's hot or cold, it has to do with the temperature the bees have acclimated to and how the broodnest is arranged in the hive.

 huh never had that issue with my SBB - The brood laying thing. I am in a warm climate but I see you are in fla.

Don't know that removing the screens will help the bearding but if you don't need the screens why restict them? Keep us updated.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 12:41:53 AM by sc-bee » Logged

John 3:16
BlueBee
Galactic Bee
******
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 4262

Location: Mid Michigan


« Reply #13 on: July 20, 2013, 02:09:25 AM »

I highly doubt your queen is under the screen!  I think (make that, ďguessĒ Wink) the bees just smell the brood from under the screen and arenít really smart enough to go around to the main entrance.  I rarely use an open screen bottom, and Iím also not sure how effective they really are at cooling down a hive in the summer.  Heat rises (less density).  Itís not like heat in the hive is going to move DOWN to escape the hive.  If you want to vent heat, I think itís going to be a lot more effective with a chimney setup:  Namely a top vent and a modest bottom entrance or small screen. 
Logged
deknow
Field Bee
***
Online Online

Gender: Male
Posts: 748


Location: Massachusetts


WWW
« Reply #14 on: July 20, 2013, 07:29:47 AM »

Queen absolutelty could be under the screen...and I wouldnt be suprised to fimd comb as well.
A single layer of screen allows the bees.on either side to touch tongues and antennae.  Bees under the screen think they are in the hive.
We took over caring for some hives at a hotel.last year.....someone had put a solid bb umder the screen bb.  Queen, returnimg from mating flew into the narrow.space in between...thats where all the brood was.
A double screen (like a snelgrove board) is designed to not let this happen.  A shim with a screen stapled to it under the bb shpuld solve your problem.

Deknow
Logged
sc-bee
Super Bee
*****
Online Online

Posts: 1971


Location: Edgefield, SC


« Reply #15 on: July 20, 2013, 08:04:20 AM »

We took over caring for some hives at a hotel.last year.....someone had put a solid bb umder the screen bb.  Queen, returnimg from mating flew into the narrow.space in between...thats where all the brood was.

Deknow

Is this not a total different situation. By adding the solid board under the screened board a void space was created basically inside the hive. I could definitely see it becoming a problem. Just a screened bottom board, anything is possible but.........
Both hives with the same condition with bees clustered under screen - queens underneath two different hives- I don't think likely.

Anyway when you do your inspection today I imagine a lot of your questions will be answered  grin  Remember you don't have to see the queen just new larvae and eggs. Also check your food stores( or your area cold have a flow going I am now in a dearth) and  also make sure queen has open space in brood chamber to lay. You probably already have these things in mind but I see you just got your bees in April, so just a little reminder Wink
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 08:18:26 AM by sc-bee » Logged

John 3:16
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« Reply #16 on: July 20, 2013, 10:52:13 PM »

Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.

The East hive is fine, I think. There are eggs, larvae and a few frames of capped pupae. Lots more bees. The hive also has a lot more propolis, fwtw. After me digging around for a while they got pissy, and the bottom box was so glued together with propolis that I had a hard time getting frames out. I stupidly didn't check to see if comb was being built on the screen below the hive, but there are definitely bees under the hive.

The west hive, however, is in trouble, I think. I found no eggs, no larvae, and no capped pupae in the hive proper. A fair number of open cells. Tons of honey, though. The third medium box up, in the midst of curing honey, I did see queen cells that have been broken open. I didn't think to count, but I'm guessing I saw three or four. All were open.

When I got down to the bottom box, I could see that they were building comb underneath the screen. Sigh. Since it was late in the day, we have company over, and I should have been grilling chicken--compounded by the fact that I didn't know what to do anyway--I closed up the hive to get coals going for supper. If I had to guess I'd say the queen is underneath the screen laying eggs in the comb they are building right above the ground, but that's purely a guess, and an uneducated one at that.

Any ideas as to a game plan would be appreciated.
Logged
sc-bee
Super Bee
*****
Online Online

Posts: 1971


Location: Edgefield, SC


« Reply #17 on: July 20, 2013, 11:40:26 PM »

I have never had bees build comb beneath the screen as you have. Of course as I said earlier my hives with screens are closer to the ground. The open cells you saw of course mean the hive swarmed at sometime. So you could have a vigin queen, a new queen that is not yet laying in the hive, or queenless. Any idea when it may have swarmed.

I would look at the comb underneath to either confirm or deny your theory that the queen may be there. Most likely not, IMO. Of couse it is possible if the hive swarmed and the queen left to be mated, one could have returned below. Anything is possible and deknow spoke of this between a screen board with a solid board beneath it.

 If no evidence of a queen under the screen, clean the comb from beneath and shake the bees in front of the hive and let them go in if they will. Clean the screen good.  If you find brood or spot a queen then it complicates things a little, because you may have another queen above the screen.

Also sounds like deknow has encounterd this before. If the bees continue to cluster after you clean the screen you may want to fab a shim with another screen where they can not touch through the bottom as he suggest.

Take it one step at the time.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2013, 11:53:00 PM by sc-bee » Logged

John 3:16
Palouse
House Bee
**
Offline Offline

Posts: 71

Location: Pullman, WA


« Reply #18 on: July 21, 2013, 11:07:21 AM »

Thank you for your reply.

I don't think the queen cells were swarm cells. I think they were emergency/supersedure cells. They were up in the middle of the frames, not along the bottom. Of course, I'm learning that beekeeping doesn't work in absolutes, so the hive could have swarmed. If they did, I don't know when.

I think today I'm going to make a traditional bottom board (no screen) and dismantle the hive to see what's up underneath the screen. An old knee surgery is back to haunt me, and I can't kneel long enough to dig around under the hive; I'm going to have to take things apart. I'll put the boxes back on the new bottom board and get a good look at the SBB.
Logged
cdevier
New Bee
*
Offline Offline

Gender: Male
Posts: 8

Location: Mid Missouri


« Reply #19 on: July 21, 2013, 08:33:49 PM »

I like your Idea of replacing the bottom board with a solid one.  That is what I would do.
The bees will be able to take care of things after that.
Charlie
Logged
Pages: [1] 2  All   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Beemaster's Beekeeping Ring
Previous | Home | Join | Random | Next
Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.20 | SMF © 2013, Simple Machines | Sitemap Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 0.341 seconds with 21 queries.

Google visited last this page October 12, 2014, 02:44:07 AM
anything