Robbing

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Spaztck, Aug 4, 2013.

  1. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    My hive is being robbed yet again. I saw a dead bee on the landing board a few days ago, and didn't think anything of it. Today, I went to do my inspection (last one two weeks ago) and I had robbing going on. I could see the fights and the bees that are robbing are l little bigger then my bees. I covered most of the hive with a wet sheet (that is what I did last time), but left a little part of the entrance uncovered. My bees are defending like crazy, but this is not helping their progress. Does anyone have some really good suggestions on stopping this for good? I got a close up of one of the fights still going on, after I put the sheet on. DSCI1676.jpg
     
  2. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    The pic, one of my bees jumped on one of the attacking bees trying to land, and they both fell in the grass fighting. I have to say, I am proud of my bees, but if I knew where these other bees were, I would feed them too! I don't want any of the bees to die.
     

  3. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    I don't mean to be dumb, sometimes I just am, how do my bees get in and out? The link says from the top, but I don't have a top entrance.
     
  4. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    The screen will be open top and bottom. The bottom will set on the bottom board, so they can't get in there. They can go down from the top of the screen. The robbers will go to the bottom, where the entrance can be seen and smelled. The house bees will figure it out, and use the top entrance.
     
  5. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    Oh okay, I get it, thank you!
     
  6. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    DSCI1697.jpg
    This was probably stupid, but I set up an empty hive body (no bees) with a sugar water frame. I set it up well away from my bees, hoping to lure the robbers. It has more bees on it, then I see around my hive. I am not sure what is going to happen.
     
  7. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    They will clean it out, then go back to your hive.
     
  8. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    I am building your screen right now.
     
  9. Yankee11

    Yankee11 New Member

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    Had to build some of those last fall and they worked great.
     
  10. pistolpete

    pistolpete New Member

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    Your distraction feeder will just contaminate someone else's honey with sugar. Those screens really do work. I put them on last fall after I initiated robbing by leaving my extractor outside. The screen is installed so that your bees have to crawl up behind the screen to get out. There will be a traffic jam for a couple of days, but the house bees figure it out quickly enough, while the robbers never do.
     
  11. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    robber screens should be something every new beekeeper looks into during season one. they represent several solution to problems often encountered and include.... robbing, moving a hive in hot weather and for any hive that seems to become excessively defensive. this last item can become very important if you are trying to maintain a hive of bees around people and animals since there is nothing more discouraging than a hive that decides that everything that passes by the front door is a threat and needs to be stung.
     
  12. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    I was worried after putting in the screen, because the bees were getting out without a problem, but they were not going in. I am glad to hear it just takes a little time for them to get used to it. Do I remove the entrance reducer? I have it set to the large opening.
     
  13. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    I don't use an entrance reducer with the screen, but I don't see how it could hurt anything other than reducing ventilation in hot weather. That would be the same concern with or without the screen.
     
  14. Spaztck

    Spaztck Member

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    So far so good, no more robbing. However, rather than going in at the top of the screen, they found a space at one of the sides. They come out at the top, but go through this little space they made at the side of the screen. I am afraid to push it back to close the space, because they are finally bringing in pollen. I had a late start and this is my first hive. Is it okay to leave that little space? They basically have to go in single file and I have not seen any sign of robbing for the last two days. Also, I closed up the distraction hive and no bees are over there.
     
  15. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    a snip...
    I am glad to hear it just takes a little time for them to get used to it.

    tecumseh..
    you would see much the same thing with a front entrance pollen trap. any little change at the front door will confuse them for a while. I would likely have removed the entrance reducer but there is likely no harm in leaving it in place. the small gap likely doesn't represent much of a problem and the idea here is to limit the access of other bees that might get the idea to begin robbing and one started robbing is hard to stop.