Have/are you fitting mouse guards?

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Have or will you be fitting mouse guard(s) this Winter?

  • Yes

    Votes: 90 69.2%
  • No

    Votes: 35 26.9%
  • Undecided

    Votes: 5 3.8%

  • Total voters
    130

jezd 

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Just curious if this is done by everyone or not...
 

Polyanwood 

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I've done one apiary and will do the other this week.

I have not had any colonies die over Winter, except last year when a mouse got into one of them. I now think mice are evil. It one one of my best colonies!!
 

Mike a 

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Mouse guards are all well and good but I'm not to keen on them as they can strip the pollen off a returning bee.

I've simply rotated my entrance blocks by 90' and drilled several 8-9mm holes through them when I began treating each colony. After treatment I check the floor of each hive for dead bees and have seen a bee dragging a corpse out through one of the holes and I've not seen any pollen removed either.

I can't remember where I got this idea from, possibly off Michael Bush's website.
 

MJBee 

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The main supplier in France now does a "hornet guard". Made from plastic with arches rather than holes, not sure of the width but it doubles as a mouse guard and being smooth rounded plastic does not strip off the pollen.

Regards Mike
 

Monsieur Abeille 

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I was wondering just how much of a problem the pollen stripping is - on my National I've fitted a standard metal mouse guard and spent some time watching the girls fly in with pollen on the weekend and didn't see any stipped off. Not to say it never happens, but do others think the problem that severe?

To answer the question, yes, national fitted as above, and WBC left with slider closed that has little entrances the bees can walk through.
 

admin 

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I dont think the problem is so much about stripping the pollen as removing a small amount each time when brushed against the holes.

Two years ago I put a couple on early before the Ivy finished and they turned yellow.
 

victor meldrew 

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I was wondering just how much of a problem the pollen stripping is - on my National I've fitted a standard metal mouse guard and spent some time watching the girls fly in with pollen on the weekend and didn't see any stipped off. Not to say it never happens, but do others think the problem that severe?

To answer the question, yes, national fitted as above, and WBC left with slider closed that has little entrances the bees can walk through.
More pollen is stripped off by the mesh on an omf than a standard mouse guard!

John Wilkinson
 

Mike a 

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I have seen the moulded plastic ones with rounded smooth corners and they are a massive improvement over the flat metal strip version with the holes punched out.
This year I made a wooden entrance block for my poly lang but next year when I buy more poly hives I'll buy the proper moulded entrance guard as well. Could be an interesting year in 2011 with all the new versions of poly hives and accessories to go with them.

bee-smillie
 

Stiffy 

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Will be putting on when it gets cold and bees are less active. I am sure they are still awake enough at present to see off any rodent intruder.

Heard a story from a vet friend who had received several pipistrelle bats in for post mortem. The bats had all been stung by bees and he couldn’t work out why a night flying mammal could be affected.
He paid a visit to the house where the bat came from and found that a swarm had taken up residence in a small hole the bats were using to gain entry into the roof of house. It would appear that when the bats emerged and returned they had to pass through the newly set-up colony! bee-smillie
Cheers
S
 

Poly Hive 

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I have never put on a mouse guard onto a poly hive. Not needed.

I always put them on to timber units as they ARE needed.

The difference is? Mice in my experience cannot get into a poly entrance it must be just too narrow for them.

Timber ones of course are deeper, the entrance that is, and so here's the door squeakers....

I do put on home made ones onto my poly nucs though as the entrance is an open goal with out one.

From past and bitter experience I certainly would not rely on the bees to deal with an intruder. If the bees are in cluster which tey are today I would think a mouse will just walk in.

If you are in timber you really want to be thinking of putting them on now.

PH
 
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psafloyd 

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More pollen is stripped off by the mesh on an omf than a standard mouse guard!

John Wilkinson
I have just fitted one metal strip with drilled holes. But they have been nicely deburred and I was careful to line the holes up with the entrance. Took a bit longer, but it is an easy transition for the bees.
 

sheena 

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Hi,

I just realised that I have forgotten to fix the mouse guards on my hives. We have had frost and I've not seen the bees flying for a while. The sun was trying to get out on Sunday and I saw one bee thinking about stretching her wings, but she changed her mind.

Anyway -am I too late to fix a mouse guard on now? Is there any way to tell if a mouse has already moved on? I don't want to trap one on there. I have open mesh floors - perhaps they would not be nice for mice? I do have entrance reducers on - however would imagine a mouse could squeeze through.

Advice appreciated!!

I do have to open up one of the hives this weekend and give them some newly acquired bako's white fondant. It was only £9 for 12.5 kg and saves me stressing about getting the candy just right! ( Late swarm - no stores ) I diverse. However would like to get in and out with least disturbance possible.
 

victor meldrew 

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Hi,

I just realised that I have forgotten to fix the mouse guards on my hives. We have had frost and I've not seen the bees flying for a while. The sun was trying to get out on Sunday and I saw one bee thinking about stretching her wings, but she changed her mind.

Anyway -am I too late to fix a mouse guard on now? Is there any way to tell if a mouse has already moved on? I don't want to trap one on there. I have open mesh floors - perhaps they would not be nice for mice? I do have entrance reducers on - however would imagine a mouse could squeeze through.

Advice appreciated!!

I do have to open up one of the hives this weekend and give them some newly acquired bako's white fondant. It was only £9 for 12.5 kg and saves me stressing about getting the candy just right! ( Late swarm - no stores ) I diverse. However would like to get in and out with least disturbance possible.
Give each hive a good thump !
Any mouse will soon shoot out of the entrance .
let the bees settle down ,then fit your mouse guards :)

John Wilkinson
 

kazmcc 

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do you put it on over the narrowed entrance or do you open the entrance up fully again?
 

oliver90owner 

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OMFs are w-i-d-e open, so a full width entrance is nothing compared to the under-floor ventilation of an OMF

Also reduces the possibility of a completely blocked entrance with just a few dead bees.

So, unless the hive is in a really windy aspect and subject to direct winds into the entrance, full width is the order of the day. Well, at least more than a restricted entrance block.

Regards, RAB
 

kazmcc 

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Thanks Rab. I am thinking of making one instead of getting our mentor to drive down again, am I right in saying you can use plastic? my mum works in a molding factory so I'm thinking of getting her to make me one as our mentor takes time getting down...it's a long way to come for a strip of something lol
 

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