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Baffle re wasps/robbing

 
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Thu Apr 17, 2014 6:15 am    Post subject: Baffle re wasps/robbing Reply with quote

I lost a weak colony to wasps last year and am interested in Barbara's baffles as I set up my hives for new stock this year.

I have side entrances about 2 bars in from the end. I understand that the entrance baffle is a full size follower board with one or more holes drilled near the top. What size holes? How many? Has it worked to prevent wasps and or robbing?

Bridget
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2014 11:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Reading another post I think I have seen this referred to as having an entrance lobby?
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1564
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Tue Apr 29, 2014 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Bridget

Sorry not to have replied sooner. It's always difficult to assess if something works for a particular problem in beekeeping or not as there are so many variables. I would suggest that a periscope entrance will probably work better to prevent robbing because the volume of the "lobby area" it creates is smaller and therefore more difficult to sneak through.
My bees don't have a problem with wasps generally, so I can't say that it prevented them. The advantage of having my hives right outside my back door is that I can check on them regularly and spot a problem before it happens. So if I see wasps knocking about and I have a weak colony, I reduce the entrance before the robbing starts. Strong colonies take care of themselves.

I have to be honest and say that I removed my "baffle board" last summer and didn't replace it. There was a good reason at the time, I know.... I think it was because I needed the extra follower to split a colony. Anyway, my bees reduced the entrance holes themselves with propolis in the autumn which they hadn't done the previous year with the baffle board in place. They have come through winter fine and are building up slowly and steadily which is the way my bees work.

If you are genuinely worried about wasps, I would probably make a periscope entrance, but the baffle board should certainly help as a simpler installment option.
I had 2x1inch holes drilled through the baffle board at the top.

Hope that helps

Regards

Barbara
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BridgetB
Scout Bee


Joined: 12 Jul 2010
Posts: 355
Location: UK Cornwall, Falmouth

PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Barbara. It is always good to know if good ideas work out. I am hoping for some swarms or maybe a split from my National later (see below) for my TBHs.

Have just bought some bees - am a beekeeper again!! They were in a WBC which the owner wanted to keep so they have been transferred into my ancient National which I had been using as a bait hive. I am now searching this site as to how to manage it more naturally. The super frames are in a second brood box which I shall add tomorrow when the bees have settled after their journey.
Bridget
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catchercradle
Golden Bee


Joined: 31 May 2010
Posts: 1487
Location: Cambridge, UK

PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't tried baffle/periscope entrance. - I have found that reducing the entrance size right down is pretty effective.
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Barbara
Site Admin


Joined: 27 Jul 2011
Posts: 1564
Location: England/Co.Durham/Ebchester

PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2014 10:07 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Congrats on having bees again.
I imagine they want to keep the WBC as a garden ornament. I've had people approach me before asking if I have an old spare hive for that purpose . Rolling Eyes

Anyway, good luck with populating your TBH from whichever source and I hope you have more success this time around.

Best wishes

Barbara
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