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Red light torch is handy tool

I found a torch on EBay that produces a red light beam, so it is not seen by bees. A handy too to check on bearding of a hive at night. Bearding can be an indicator of an over crowded hive so with a red light it is possible to check a hive without upsetting the colony. A hot day or night can also cause bearding, of course, to help reduce the over heating of the colony. But a check with a red light can help to check on the number of bees and if seen then then the next step is to do a daylight inspection.
The torch runs on a AA battery, Cost was $11.60A. I used it tonight at my apiary and it seems the bees didn’t see the light even shining into the entrance. I found one hive with bearding so I will have a look tomorrow and see if a split is needed. Thought it might be handy to you guys.


Excellent Peter glad it works.
My kids use red headlamps in wild life research at night but the correct ones are expensive. Some versions just aren’t bright enough or have other light sprectrums that can be seen.


I did a check on the hive with bearding last night, which was a bit cool, so this morning I went prepared and it definitely needed a split. It was confirmed by the amount of bees hanging out in the roof and then found two supercedure queen cells as well, I thought I had done them all for a while but I missed that one. So I figure the torch has paid for itself already. The light is bright enough for checking the hives but that is its limit, not bright enough for finding wildlife at night.


I have an LED torch that has a wheel so you can select 4 colors- red, green blue or white. I use it all the time on the red setting when I am closing up hives at night to move them and things like that. I can attest that the bees cannot seem to see the red light at all as they do not react in any way and never flew towards it. they do fly towards it on the green or white settings. Haven’t tested blue. It’s very handy!

it’s a bit pricey- I found mine:

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The red spectrum is the only ones bees can’t see Jack, at 100 lumens it is bright enough to do anything on a hive and the beam width is adjustable. Price wise it was the cheapest on EBay at the time. I have a couple of boxes of bee keeping junk but I think it has proven a good thing for me.