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Newbie Question


Good Day all, I have a question and I hope I dont waste your time with this but I rather ask a stupid question than drop the ball before I even get started.

My flow hives are assembled and I would like to label them. I want to get my kids involved or at the very least make them feel invested in whats going on so I wanted them to each write their names at the entrance to the hive (Located at the bottom of the assembly). Its a good way also of keeping track of which hive is producing the most by giving them unique names etc etc.

I was going to have them (The kids) do this using a permanent marker but those things have a distinctive smell. I know bees are acutely sensitive to their environment and I dont want to throw them off. Is it ok to paint the base of the entry (Like color coding it to differentiate) or write the names of them, using a permanent marker where they fly in and fly out? Will this throw them off at all?

Thanks in advance


It should be absolutely fine, as long as you do it at least a couple of weeks before the bees arrive. I actually label the top bars of my frames with a Sharpie Permanent Marker. If I replace a frame and then try to label it in the hive, the bees often try to sting the pen, but once the frame is labeled and the ink is dry, they totally ignore it.


Good to know. Thanks Dawn.



Dawn is correct … l mark the top end of all hive frames with an “X” … The smell of the Sharpy Pen is gone rather quickly … I mark the frames so I can keep them pointed the same direction. I like keeping my colonies in order n organized … Seeing the “X” helps keep all the frames in same direction as I replace after an inspection.

With nice fancy Flow-hives I might use other special Idea plate with their names. It would look nicer n much more special ! Little brass engraved plate would l👀K very unique n special ! I have two Flow-hives. One 6 frame n one 7 frame model.

Anyway that’s my two bits/cents worth ! Your starting a great new venture … Enjoy !

Cheers n Good Luck, :four_leaf_clover:



Hi you all beekeeper.

Weird stuff ! :snowflake:️:cloud_with_rain::snowflake:️ My 72rd Birthday :tada: came around this last Friday 11/3. With it came a special party, cake, few gifts n something I’d never gotten for my birthday not even as a kid. We got S-N-O-W !

Winter has quickly came to the Pacific N.W n Puget Sound. It’s time for hot cocoa n sleepy :relieved: :honeybee:

For about five days now I’ve not seen a single bee head peek out the entrance even the warmest part of the day. My bees are now clustered in each of my hives n ready for winter. We just might get a kind of mild day n a few might takev a pottie break but all n all my “Girls” are snug n warm n happy ! I tapped with my ear to the hive wooden side n heard that familiar rise in the Hmmm ! when I tap !

One more season done. Awesome ! Picked up 40 pound box of patties today so I’ll pop up the top roofs n crown boards later for a top-end check … slide in a pattie if they have work thru the two already inside for emergency backup food.

my cute little great granddaughter will be nearly one year old when we start next Spring season n flowers.

Awesome interesting hobby we have,


Aw Man! … Why so happy with such crappy weather Gerald? I am heading over to the U.S. in January and was hoping for a warm winter, I am not good with coping in the cold. I have a Mead Course happening in U.C. Davis in California and then off to Utah and then to Buffalo and NY.


Well Rod,

The Cali time should be mild n okay but head for Utah, then New York could be interesting. It’s a pot shoot weatherwise. If your between major weather events it can be great BUT if one Wx event slides in on you … have the long johns n winter gear at hand.

Out here near Puget Sound n Seattle the weather can be cool long n wet but not as sever n cold as Utah n back East. Wishing you a great session n time. January is usually the Coldest n Worst … so be ready !

Good luck :+1::four_leaf_clover:

Gerald :blush:


Our hives are named by their queens, by names of our daughters and granddaughters. They all know their hives, so do we. If you don’t go over 10 hives, you won’t need names on the entrance really.
Each of the (queen) daughters and (queen) granddaughters have their own Colour or painting on their hive.
If they do need their names on, why not on the sides or on the back? You don’t very often look straight at the entrance once the bees are in.


Greeting Webckan,

Hello across the miles from the Pacific NW SE of Seattle in the lower Cascade Mtn foothills. Autumn :fallen_leaf: leaves are disappearing quickly up here. All my hives ( four of them) are all winterized now. We’ve had an early SNOW here. Usually December at the early but surprized us with white falling on my Birthday (11/3). This is the earliest in my 72 years here.

I’ve named all mine after local tree species. Example are : Maple hive, Birch Hive, Cedar Hive, Fir hive, Pine hive, Willow hive, Alder n Poplar tree hive. If I got a larger apiary number we have a lot more tree species names to go ! But trying to stay below 8 normal (8 n 10 frame hives) n four 5 frame Nuc’s sized colonies.

Got to go ! Cheers :beers:,