Screening of apiary

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Andy Coleman 

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I'm setting up a small apiary, up to four hives, in a secluded allotment (with full agreement from the manager etc). I've fenced off an area so far with deer-proof wire fencing because the site is in a woodland clearing where deer can be a problem, and I also need to put in some finer mesh screening to make sure the bees elevate their flight paths over the heads of fellow gardners.

Does anyone know what is the largest size of mesh which will still ensure that bees won't fly through the holes - I've read that the green plastic garden mesh should do the trick. This has a mesh size of about 2.5cms, but I haven't been able to find anything definite about what will work. I want to allow as much sunlight through as possible and so I don't want to grow a hedge or to use solid material.

Any views appreciated, Andy
 

Dishmop 

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How close is the nearest gardener likely to be?
 

PaleoPerson 

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I have found some steel mesh (to keep sheep out) at about 3 inches square actually pushes the bees over.

Black fine bird mesh caused all sorts of problems as the bees appeared not to be able to see it and kept flying into it.

I also have a post and two rail fence with gaps about two feet by six feet that the bees will not fly through.

The scaffolder's mesh listed above will do the trick though, I was just trying not to obstruct too much sunlight.
 

Andy Coleman 

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hi - well that could be myself, and I would be on the other side of the "fence", say anything over 8 feet or so. regards Andy
 

Andy Coleman 

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thanks - your experience with the black netting is interesting, I wonder if the same problem would happen with the green stuff. The 3" fencing you have used for sheep proofing sounds similar to the stuff I've put up against deer (and to dissuade inquisitive humans!), but I hadn't thought it would be enough to cause the bees to fly over. The scaffolders' screen will certainly work but as you say will cut out more light.

It's an interesting problem, I had thought there would have been some research done but haven't been able to find anything definitive, so other people's experience is always valuable, regards Andy
 

Dishmop 

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Put a couple of scarecrows in their flightpath...near to the hive..
 

Mike a 

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Have a look in your local garden centres for Green house shading. Should find some thing suitable which will still allow good light through it and ventilation at a reasonable price.



As far as the bees are concerned it will look like a solid wall and they will fly over it.
 

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