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Add an Extra entrance

I have a double super hive, one is the flow hive on top and the other a standard super
Is there any merit in adding an extra entrance on the top of the lower super for easy access to the flow super? So the bees don’t have to travel all the way from the entrance through the brood box diary super then onto the flow ?

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What a great question. The forum has been kind of quiet recently, but in the past, this would have started a storm of comments! :blush:

My bees love an additional upper entrance. During a heavy nectar flow, it gets very crowded. However, I must add a caveat. Late in the season, when nectar dearths are more common and robbing starts, it can give robbers easy access. So you need a way to close it off when you are not in peak flow periods.

Just my 2 cents’ worth… :wink:

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Cool
Thank you
I shall organise something that can be closed off

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If you were going to add a top entrance, I’d suggest to make it a small one, maybe about 5 sq.cm. If the like it as an entrance, they’ll use it. If they don’t like it, they’ll block it with propolis.

Even though it’s summer where we both are, the days are getting shorter, I’m noticing the bees are gathering a lot of propolis now. In the coming months they’ll start blocking gaps they don’t want, in preparation for winter.

I’ve done lots of cut-outs. The bees always have their brood area closest to the entrance. That’s why I like to give the bees something similar.

My bees have had many opportunities to use an upper entrance on account of gaps in the corners of the lids where wood has rotted, for example, however they always seem to block them off.

They’ll always use a rear entrance down the bottom whenever a corner rots out, but never at the top.

On the other hand I’m only using a single brood, single super configuration. Things might be different if I was to use a double super configuration.

cheers

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I agree with @JeffH. Most people who do this, either drill a 1" (25mm) diameter hole near the top of the super, or they use a “notch” in the inner cover, like me. My notch is about 25mm wide and 8mm height.

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apparently a forager doesn’t actually go and store the nectar into a cell itself when it returns to the hive- but is greeted by a ‘packing’ bee near the entrance. The forager feeds it’s nectar to that bee which then goes and does the storing. So foragers don’t actually enter the hive and travel all the way up- they just hand off their load near the entrance. Having said that I have run hives with entrances into the super and the bees do use them. I think they are best int he spring and during the main flow- not in colder months when they likely lose heat and make it harder for the bees to stay warm.

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This is what I expected but the harvester still needs to traverse all the boxes, unless they form a chain gang or something :grin:
Which is why I am asking the question and getting options, makes hopefully for better decision making
Thank you for your help

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