Today I had a lot of fun modifying my hive. All I have left to do before beeday is seal the hive with tung oil.
Front and back of the full hive (stand, brood box, super, roof)
In the pic below you will see the hive stand with only the bottom board. In the pic there are 6 modifications: (1) a metal entrance reducer that doubles as mouse protection, (2) shelf on the back side of the hive to hold honey jars, (3) the shelf is removable and the shelf supports also allow you to hang frames while working with the hive, (4) bowls I will fill with oil around each hive leg to deter ants, (5) nail board to deter skunks and racoons, and (6) I added an oil tray to the bottom board for beetle control.
The bottom board and stand
The oil tray partially pulled out (I plan to fill this with mineral oil or soapy water)
The shelf removed with frames hanging from the support
Closeup of oil moats (I plan to fill these with mineral oil)
Nail board to deter skunks and racoons. Supposedly having your hive off the ground acts as one deterrent as the verments don’t like to be stung on their belly and the nail board acts as an additional deterrent.
Closeup of metal entrance reducer
At the top of the hive I have 2 more mofications. (1) A mesh cover for the inner cover to hopefully keep out wax moths and keep bees out of the attic, (2) I cut a hole in the roof section for better ventilation during the hot central Texas Summers (this was also covered in screen to keep critters out).
Two pics of mesh cover for inner cover. In the first pic there is a piece of tile I am using to weigh down the mesh cover. I might take off the mesh cover in the winter and just the tile to cover the feeder hole.
Two pics of the ventilation hole in the roof from both sides of the hole. I was using a paddle bit to make the hole and I accidentally hit a roof screw, which really messed up what would have been a clean hole.
- The moats are going to fill up with water when it rains and leaves in the fall. I think I will have to add some sort of umbrella for them.
- My stand is wide, and I worry I might find it annoying to work with the hive without being able to get up close to the side of the hive. BUT, the stand is wide enough for 2 hives, which I might like in the future.
- I used a pallet underneath the hive because I thought it would be easier to level the pallet.
- Like many people I had to move the access latch up 1/4" so that the panel would pull out.
- Like many people I had to loosen up the flow frame access panel by narrowing two of the box joint fingers.