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Small Hive Beetle (SHB) and Moth Trap using corflute slider


#1

We have glued some small timber pieces 8mm square to the existing core flute on the flowhive to help catch SHB and moths.
The trap is on the core flute board, goes in the lower slot and uses ordinary garden lime. The gap is too small for bees but allows the beetles in. It also catches any larvae that may drop through from inside the hive.
Any beetles or moth get covered in lime and die. The lime lasts for months and just needs loosening up a bit every couple of weeks. When we remove the old lime we also dispose in a closed container as some moth larvae still develop.
Has been very successful and very little maintenance required.


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My first Flow Hive harvest :) Delaware, Indiana, USA
#2

nice work Gary, I use diathomaceous earth in much the same way i.e. underneath the screen in the bottom of the hive, then just throw into the garden… nothing survives DE


#3

You said the lime lasts for months. What exactly is that and where do you get it? I would like to try this out.


#4

Lime can be purchased from most gardening centres, I have used lime before but it is not as effective as Diathomaceaous Earth (DE), it is essentially the same as lime (or ground up limestone) but more refined and can be purchased from pool shops (used for filtering water). The tiny particles of silica are like glass shards that penetrate and the exo-skeleton of the beetle and dehydrate it. It is a mineral and not a pesticide so is safe around pets and in the garden. Just be careful not to allow the bees to access it.


#5

Hi any lime from a garden centre is fine.Usually it is a fine powder used for adjusting the the soil ph level for plants.Hope that helps.Gary


#6

Hi Gaz Could you clarify the type of lime you use? Is it crushed limestone of hydrated lime? When I think of agricultural lime i think crushed limestone but It might be a bit mild for killing the nasty critters that fall onto the tray.


#7

Hi , not hydrated lime just plain garden lime. You could use hydrate builders lime as use for mortar etc but it can be a bit more irritating to the skin. I use Ritchgro natural garden lime from bunnings. I just run my fingers through it every week or two and remove any solids or waste and dispose of in a closed container. It is amazing how long moths etc can survive in the closed waste container, so be careful when opening.


#8

Good day. I am a new comer to Bees but my son Brent did Bees many years ago when he was still a school boy. We are just getting organised and should have our first 10 hives of bees in a very short time. We are grateful for all your comments and I think this is a good idea for the beetles. We have been worried about them as we are in QLD and they seem to be a real problem here.


#9

Depending on where you are in QLD, @JeffH might be a good resource for you. He is supremely good at managing SHB, and he offers mentorship too. He is at Buderim on the Sunshine Coast, I believe.


#10

Hi Jeni, SHB can be a problem here in Qld. but there is no need for them to be a problem. Like @Dawn_SD said, I can help you. (Hi & thank you Dawn) There is just a couple of simple rules to follow & you’ll be fine. Good luck with your beekeeping endeavors, cheers


#11

Hi Dawn-SD ]

Thank you for your email. I am in Mackay on the Queensland Coas.

Thanks for your suggestion. I will contact @JeffH.

Jeni.


#12

@Jeff could you please elaborate on your “few simple rules” for managing SHB please for those of us who don’t live near you for mentoring?. :slightly_smiling_face:
I am a first year 1 hive owner and I just started noticing a lot of them. I am not finding a lot of information for eliminating them; only discussion about management. So far I have tried the fuzzy tablecloth side up taped to my slider with limited success and while I catch some, I seem t I see more and more now.

Also, can using DE spread around the hive on the ground or in a cor flute slider tray designed as above be harmful to the bees or to my cats if they walk through it often?


#13

Hi Nick, it’s a matter of keeping the colony strong with workers. Keep the brood comb predominantly worker comb. Remember that it’s the workers that do the defending. It’s the workers that chase the SHB & wont allow them to lay their eggs. Excess drones will only hinder the process. Don’t leave any dead bees lodged between frames that can’t be readily removed by workers. Lastly don’t have any frames in the brood, or honey super for that matter that contain brood of pollen that doesn’t have enough bees to prevent beetles from laying eggs in it. The beetles will lay eggs in brood, dead bees & pollen. They will not lay eggs in honey or clean drawn comb.

While they are laying eggs in the brood, dead bees or pollen, they will decap the honey & then commence walking it everywhere, turning it rancid.

When you open a hive, instead of the combs looking dry, they will have a wet appearance, along with the rancid smell.

Don’t be overly concerned by the presence of SHBs. I stopped worrying about them once I adopted my strategy. I don’t use any traps whatsoever. I just kill the ones I see & that’s it.


#14

DE will kill bees if they come into contact with it. It shouldn’t hurt the cats at all.


#15

Hi Jeff, thanks for the information.
How do you, “Keep the brood comb predominantly worker comb” though?
I installed one of those green drone boards recently. It is supposed to be sized for only growing drones and then you take it out and dispose of them regularly before they come out…but when I checked it, the board had only honey stored on it. So that has not worked and I am not sure how to reduce drones and encourage more worker comb.

Side note, I added a top feeder that holds a few gallons of sugar water because my 2 boxes did not have enough honey. They drank a lot. Two weeks later the top box looks like all honey so that’s great but wow, that feeder box was loaded with SHB! So that had to go.


#16

Hi Nick, I see that you are in the US. Your bees wont be producing drones at this time in the season, so naturally they will store honey in the drone comb.

The way that I keep the worker population up is to keep using fresh properly fitted wax foundation in the brood box. If the bees mess any frames up & rebuild them with drone comb, I’ll work those frames out of the brood & replace them with fresh foundation.

I would just squash those beetles you saw in the top feeder. They were probably hiding there because the bees chased them there. It’s good to have hiding places for the bees to chase them to, in my books.

A strong population that has a lot of beetles hiding from them is far better than a weak population with a lot of beetles running free, having an orgy & slyming a hive out.


#17

I’m thinking that this method might be easier and cleaner. (And just as effective) than what I was planning: my original plan was to use neverwet strips and an oil pan in place of the corflute. I think using the neverwet strips and this “dry box trap” method may just be the ticket!

I have DE available from my pool filter supplies…


#18

Yes, Michael. I’m setting up my new hives with the neverwet beetle barrier method described in this Youtube video by Jeff Willard:

Jeff’s got a couple of other SHB videos on Youtube that are very instructive and convincing. As you say this method looks like “the ticket” to keeping our hives free of the beetles.


#19

I’m pretty sure filter DE is not suitable for pest control. It has been heat treated and activated. Pest control DE is milled and much finer.


#20

Totally agree. :wink: