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Do bees care about e.g. screw heads inside hives?

 
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joshrobs
House Bee


Joined: 01 Jul 2019
Posts: 15
Location: Mid Wales

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 2:11 pm    Post subject: Do bees care about e.g. screw heads inside hives? Reply with quote

I had loads of 19mm board so I screwed+glued it crosswise to make thicker panels for the ends and sides, with the screw heads on the inside, but now I'm wondering, do bees care about nail heads or screw heads inside their hives? I kind of assumed not but they'd likely leak heat and end up colder than the wood so maybe that'd be an issue?
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1853
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Mon Jul 15, 2019 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

As you realise the screws will draw heat away from the inside to some extent but not sure it will be a huge issue unless you have lots of them. They may snag on your knife when you are cutting away comb attachment during an inspection, so perhaps counter sinking them a little deeper than flush and filling the recess with beeswax would help insulate the bees from the metal surface and reduce the potential heat loss and prevent any problems during inspections.
Personally I might have been inclined to use the 19mm timber singly and just make sure there was insulation above the top bars (under the roof) and perhaps external protection from prevailing winter winds. ie a wind break.

I have bait hives made from 3/4 inch timber and some even thinner which overwinter colonies quite happily. Some even have no insulation in the roof at all, or even a proper roof for that matter, just a piece of plywood or rigid plastic and a brick on top to hold it down. My strongest, earliest and happiest swarms came from two such hives this May and both parent hives are back to brooding and building up in preparation for next winter.
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joshrobs
House Bee


Joined: 01 Jul 2019
Posts: 15
Location: Mid Wales

PostPosted: Tue Jul 16, 2019 11:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's interesting that 19mm can be enough, though I guess national hives must be about that. I was more concerned with strength, the wood's from an Ikea changing table I got off ebay for 99p and it's very light and fluffy feeling... but it's big smooth boards so I made the inside from them and made the outside from old bed slats. So there's quite a lot of screws Confused and they probably will snag. I just learned how to flush-cut dowel though, so maybe I'll take the screws out and glue dowel through the holes instead.

Thank you!
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Adriaan
Foraging Bee


Joined: 18 Jan 2016
Posts: 139
Location: central Belgium

PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 5:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I wouldn't be worried about the screws the bees will propolise them in no time.
But that Ikea board is meant for indoors in a dry environment. I have Ikea bathroom cupboards made from similar boards I suppose and the one nearest the shower is starting to crack open and the fluffy stuff inside (looks like glued together wood shavings) has started to swell and fall apart.
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1853
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 12:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If it is on the inside of the hive and sealed with beeswax, it should be fine. I have a hive made out of a veneered chipboard corner cabinet intended for indoor use and it has been in use as a hive for 10 years now and still holding up although there is some delamination starting to occur on the vertical face which was drilled through for entrance holes.
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joshrobs
House Bee


Joined: 01 Jul 2019
Posts: 15
Location: Mid Wales

PostPosted: Wed Jul 17, 2019 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

It is real wood, just very light!
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