mouse guards

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New Bee
Jan 22, 2009
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Newton Abbot Devon
Hive Type
I have entrance blocks on my hives as shown. Do i need to put mouse guards over these or will they be okay as they are? I do have two metal mouse guards if i need them.
I have the entrace blocks like you, but will still be adding the metal mouse gaurds in a couple of weeks.

Just make sure you line them up to maximise holes in gaurd to narrow slot.

Also, you really need to get the block in flush with the main hive body.
thanks for the quick reply. The picture was taken earlier in the year when i had the blocks positioned like that to allow a bit more of an opening. Thanks gain.
I agree with the above,mice will get through the reducer no problem as its the size of the scull that determines what gap they can get through.

Like said above make sure you line the holes up so the bees can get through.

If you are on a solid floor, I would consider more bottom ventilation, than the entrance block is giving now, for the winter rest.

Just consider those with OMFs. All you need to avoid is excessive draughts/wind directly into the hive. I run the winter months with no top ventilation and mesh floors which are sometimes restricted to less than the full floor area, but generally left open. I am in sunny Lincolnshire.

Mine are on 12 inch deep brood frames and I would probably prefer to always see standard brood overwintered on a 'brood and a half' with OMF unless some extra bottom space is arranged to stop those draughts disturbing the air in the hive. Just depends on how long the winter is, how severe, and if you intend feeding fondant after the new year, if necessary, so ymmv.

Regards, RAB
The netting fencing blew down around my home apiary this winter I run OMF's and they were fine. Snow, wind, as long as they have enough stores I think they should be ok.

Teignbee I highly recommend getting 2 OMF's and get them on asap, For all round health and ventilation.
I will get a couple of omfs as soon as poss. Does any body still use solid floors and are they really that bad?

No, solid floors are not that bad. They have their uses. Can't think of many off-hand, but I'm sure they do....

Seriously, you could make them much more ventilated by cutting/drilling holes in them and covering with mesh. Maybe not ideal, but as long as the boards are not totally cut through, it could be an option before saving up for OMFs, or getting around to making some, or awaiting the winter sales or....whatever.

They were used without too many problems(?) for about a hundred years, or more, before OMFs became an option. Not seen too many WBCs with OMFs. But my WBCs didn't have a condensation problem either!

I had condensation problems in Nationals when I started and also lost a colony because of too much top ventilation (I thought at the time). I just found OMFs so much less of a problem - like I did away with top ventilation and it remained dry in the hives. So they are almost universal now on my hives.

Oh yes, my bait hives are always with solid floors.

Even my nucs are generally on part-mesh floors - but they are deep, and do have 'nuc supers' on too!

Regards, RAB
A mouse can get through a gap of 8mm or more. The old guage was the top of a fountain pen. If the skull can get through the body can be made to follow.

"The rule is if you can fit a pencil through a hole then a mouse can get through! ... This means they take small amounts of food from many different places. ... be an effective way of dealing with mouse infestations but it does have its ... Once you have caught a mouse you will need to take it up to a minimum of 2 ... "

I start trapping mice now.

When I had a big store of drawn combs I had a good 6 or so traps running and from now through to mid November I was taking one or two a day.

I also put small bags of poison under hives in the out apiaries and it was a revelation in spring how much was taken.

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No need to buy OMF, as oliver says and I did, just cut out the middle section of your solid floors and fix some mesh in.

I still have a couple of solid flors, for bait hives and treatments that require hive sealing up a bit.

My nucs are still solid floors for 2 reasons, not as easy to just cut the bottome off them and nucs are quickly transfered to main vies (even if then need follower boards in)
A mouse can get through a gap of 8mm or more. The old guage was the top of a fountain pen. If the skull can get through the body can be made to follow.

"The rule is if you can fit a pencil through a hole then a mouse can get through! ...

I've heard something that before too...and believed it until now!


Picks up pencil, tries it in hole of mouse guard as sold by many UK suppliers. Pencil fits through easily. Tries another mouse guard of a slightly different design, same result, tries another pencil, same result, tries a bic biro, same result. Tries really chunky carpenters pencil - doesn't fit :)

The normal size pencil, of what looks like a standard hexagonal type measures 6.84mm across the flats, 7.4mm across the corners

The mouse guard holes in both designs are 9.4mm

I think i will go down the home made route,cutting out the floors and inserting mesh. Thanks for all your advice.

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