The piece that came with my hive that is a piece of wood with a hole in the center I have above my brood box I have covered with another thin piece of wood (the one that kept my sugar can in my bee package). Would I ever not use that? Why or when would I uncover it? I have an A-frame hive, so if I let it open would the bees built at the peek? I guess I am trying to figure out what the purpose is. Do I leave that in with minimal access when I eventually use the queen excluder? Sorry for all the questions but you guys (meaning girls too) rock! Thanks!
FYI, that is called an “inner cover” in the US, or a “crown board” in the UK. The hole in the inner cover is used for some types of feeders, like a pail feeder or an inverted mason jar feeder. The inner cover holds the inverted pail over the hole, and the bees can take syrup through the screen in the pail lid, like this:
Bees vary in this, some people leave it open and never have a problem. Others find a huge mess of comb under the roof. Like you, I close the hole off if I am not using it for feeding.
Not quite sure what you are asking, but the inner cover always goes on top of the highest box of bees in the hive. Don’t put it on top of the queen excluder, put it on top of the highest super in hive, then put the roof on top of the inner cover. Please ask again if this isn’t clear.
@Dawn_SD you are awesome and I am learniNG alot from your answers and posts along with a bunch of others! That answered my question very clearly.
I may just close the hole off in a more secure way when I get to inspect on Thursday. That will be the 10 day mark since my queen was free. I can’t wait to check progress and get an update out for feedback. Thanks a million!
I just use a thin stone tile. It works fine and it is easy to remove for feeding or smoking the bees. Some people staple or tape #8 hardware cloth over the hole to allow some ventilation though the roof. I don’t think it helps the bees much, so I don’t do that.
I always love your photos, Ed. The ones you have of frames “full of food or brood” are superb too.
Hey, I just read this chain sparked by your question. I didn’t even think about that, I thought it was just for ventilation. Glad you asked about it. Blessings…