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oliver90owner 

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Who on here has experienced woodpecker damage? And your situation? Is it an annual problem? Where are your hives situated? How do you deal with the situation ( no, not the woodpecker culling course, on the other thread today!).

I have not had any incidences yet. Best part of ten years and none reported at the local BKA meetings, as far as I can remember. None of my hives are in large woodland, but some have been in fairly remote-from-habitation rural locations.

Yes, I saw the one thread but as there are a lot of new members, I thought a post on effects and prevention might be good, before the winter.

Regards, RAB
 

Hombre 

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Sadly, the players are the same, but no courses. :)

My experience is indirect of course, but if you experience woodpecker damage at an apiary you will find that it is a learned habit. Not all do it, but once started, abandon the apiary for the affected part of the year if you don´t want to shoot it. I don´t know if the young learn the habit from their parents or not.

There are two types of woodpeckers in Britain, those that do and those that don´t :) :)

My woodpecker knowledge is now at the severely stretched point. Woodpeckers are not too keen on plywood hives, as they are relatively dense and it hurts their beaks. They will happily destroy your poly Langstroth boxes with nary a thought. That hurts us beeks.
I hope that I haven´t disappointed you and there is a smidgin in there that you can usefully use without choking on your tongue laughing. :grouphug:

The situation was the edge of a small wood which turned out to be a very good apiary site later in the year, but not for overwintering due to the antisocial behaviour of the local woodpecker.
 
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MJBee 

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We have the green, greater and lesser spotted varieties over here and some of my colonies are in a clearing in a wood. Fortunately in the same wood are a number of pine trees that had their tops snapped off in the storm of 1999, the trees are still standing but dead and are now woodpecker high rises. So far, says he touching wood, no problem. I believe wrapping the hive loosely with black plastic is a good deterrent.
:cheers2: Mike
 

Haughton Honey 

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Lots of Commercial hives.......
I have heard that wrapping chicken wire around the hive does the trick.
 

buffalow 

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Hi I had three hives damaged in winter last year while snow was on the ground ,it was a green woodpecker, the hives were in an orchard in a residential area of wolverhampton ,, They were all cedar construction , I wrapped 1/2 inch wire mesh around and this protected the other hives , I have also been advised that they will also attack ply wood hives as a good friend has had the same problem last year he has wrapped polythene around his hives.
 

victor meldrew 

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Ted Hooper advised black plastic strips over the hives ,reckoning that the fluttering deterred the woodpecker .

John Wilkinson
 

Onge 

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A black plastic bag sounds better than chicken wire, especially if you've got a lot of hives.
 

buffalow 

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The only concerns with plastic bags/sheet during the winter is condensation/ventilation issues as the polythene sweats i think i will try both and see this year however i knowthe netting works even if it is expensive stuff ...
 

jimbeekeeper 

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Maybe another tick in the box for the Omlet beehaus?

That is unless woodpeckers like plastic?
 

tonybloke 

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The green woodpecker is the villian of the piece, and he/she needs to hang on to the side of the hive to attack it. several hives at our local college apiary have been attacked in the past. By securing plastic sheeting to the sides of the hives, they can't get a grip with their feet on the sides of the hive. ( a friend has used landscape membrane with success)
 

mikethebee 

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Each year we overwinter brand new plywood working hives (pressure treated tantalized) with a family of bees for sale £185.50 each, and never yet had a woodpecker go through them. (Attempted)
Yet on the same sites we have had in the past brand new cedar hives costing a min £300 and pine have in a couple of days 6 inch holes poked though.
CAN ANYONE tell me why they don’t like the ply “is it the splinters” ?
 

rae 

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We have a metric shed load of wood peckers (green, black etc), so I'm taking no chances with them learning this trick. I'm simply going to make some chicken wire hoops, that drop over the hives, I've got loads of chicken wire kicking about.

I don't think the beehaus would be immune - I believe that they hear the bees and smell the honey, the wood/plastic is merely an obstacle.
 

Hivemaker. 

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I really don't believe they would have a hope of getting into a behaus.
 

Hombre 

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Said with confidence HM, I hope that you are right, but we'll all find out one way or the other with the passage of time.
I seem to think that the roof is smooth and slippery offering little in the way of a foothold. :)
 

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