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Mould under the top cover


i have a traditional langstroth hive with a top cover, but i have notice that it’s getting mouldy from all the moisture. i’m not 100% if the moisture is coming from the hive or water is coming in from outside.

there is propolis around the rim of the hive which the bees have put there.

Do Bees get bothered by mould ? would abscond because of mould? need advice on how to prevent further mould and perhaps getting rid of it.


We all have some mould in our hives. Mostly it doesn’t bother the bees, and they will clean up/polish or seal whatever bits they want to stay mould free, if they reach it. If you want to get rid of it, get some unscented household bleach and dilute it to 4% (1 part bleach in 24 parts water). Spray or wipe it onto the mould and leave in the sun (if possible) for 24 hours. Rinse it off and you are good to go when the item is dry again. Bees drink swimming pool water all the time - a bit of chlorine bleach doesn’t bother them.


That does look like moisture is coming in from the outside. Is there a piece of fabric lining the top? It could be wicking water in.
Boulder, CO, USA


Hi K,

If you enlarge the underside of his top its partical board not cloth … It does look
To be wicking in from the sides some how or condensate weirdly collecting some how. There’s always some type of moisture in hives. I notice some of mine worst than others. One type of top-feeder I bought is really coming apart (bottom thin ply maybe poor exterior plywood)… Or they used interior n thot it would be okay. Not sure. That’s why I am building a lot more of my own parts. Can’t make it all as I’m too busy at times but trying to build better to last longer.

P.S. Pix of poor quality plys on two top-feeder undersides


Hi G,
I’ve seen a lot of that same type of plywood used in bee equipment, mostly inner covers. I think it’s called luan. It was very nice looking to start, but ended up the same way yours did. The manufacturer should replace it, IMHO.


Who made those feeders, Jerry? I wouldn’t want to buy from them, if I knew. Hopefully it wasn’t Brushy Mountain! :blush:



Good News ! It wasn’t Bushy Mtn … I have two of theirs n they are perfect. These damaged plywood feeders I got local … I’ve address the issue with them n hopefully they are rethinking as I’m going to buy two more feeders n they will be from Bushy Mtn. Live n Learn !

. This is the bottom of a Bushy Mtn feeder. It’s still solid, intact n doesn’t leak ! I have no intention of buying from the previous supplier if the materials in the feeder are not changed n improved. They weren’t cheap either n I assumed quality. Bad assumption !

Live n learn, :smile:


Phew!! I hate to recommend bad products. So far I have been nothing but impressed with Brushy Mountain. Thanks for the info, Jerry. Merry Christmas and Happy Everything! :smile:


Here is a suggestion for mould that does not involve a chlorine based bleach. Its very environmentally friendly its hydrogen peroxide, I used this for delicate plants and it worked quite well.
The reason why its not used more in say treating drinking water is that it is more expensive than chlorine bleach.
Cheers Alan