Solved - Bottom multifunction tray kills bees along with beetles

Morning All!

We’ve had our Flow Hive 2+ up and running for just over a month and we’re having a great time. We installed our nucleus just over 2 weeks ago and did our first brood inspection last weekend. Both went great and we’re really enjoying the process. During our inspection, we did notice ~3 hive beetles, likely carryovers from the nuc.

To combat these guys, we smashed the ones we saw, pulled out the multifunction tray, removed the one larvae we saw there, then filled the bottom of the tray with oil to catch any remaining larvae. Today we went our to check the tray and were really sad to find the tray filled with hundreds of dead bees :frowning:

We’re trying to figure out where we went wrong here. We have a few ideas but would love more input from the group:

  1. We’re thinking maybe our silver cover wasn’t aligned properly so bees could still get down?
  2. We used leftover oil from the kitchen which had a distinct fried food smell, so maybe that attracted the bees too much?
  3. Maybe we put in too much oil so it trapped the bees by mistake?

Any thoughts would be much appreciated. Thank you all!
–Ben

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Definitely check for gaps between the screen and the tray compartment, also consider how long the tray was out and how many bees investigated under the screen and were trapped when you put the tray back in.

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This was perfect! It was unfortunately user error. I placed the silver screen in backwards, so there was a large gap leading down to the tray :man_facepalming:

We fixed it and did a quick brood inspection. Thankfully we still have plenty of brood and more bees then we started with. Appreciate the help!

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Hi Ben, I just want to clarify one thing, while I’m pleased to read that you solved the issue of the dead bees in the tray.

While it’s possible that the odd beetle came with the nuc, there’s no guarantee that killing those few beetles will be the end of them, that is assuming beetles are in your area.

If beetles are in your area, they WILL find your hive.

Hey Jeff, I appreciate the clarification. It’s on our checklist to look for every time we do an inspection. Also, now that the gap is resolved, we’ll make sure to have oil in the multifunction tray as another preventative measure.

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