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What is this weird behavior at the entrance?


#1

Today I was looking at my bees and noticed something very interesting, several of them were “kissing” the wood of the hive entrance in a repeated way. Anybody knows what they are doing and is this normal?
You can see it on this video:

Also, wanted to show something I’m experimenting to remove beetles safely from my hive.
I really appreciate your feedback!


#2

Thats the dance they do when they beard a box. Pretty cool really. No worries, it’s a natural occurance.


#3

Thanks Tony for the feedback. I have never heard the expression “beard a box”.


#4

usually they will cover the front of box when they do it. Fun to watch though. Enjoy!


#5

its called “Washboarding”, not much is this known about this activity but one belief is that it is a housekeeping duty being performed by nurse bees that are not needed inside the hive and too young to progress to foragers and so do the housework in cleaning the entrance and external surfaces of the hive.


#6

Thanks for asking the question and posting the video. My bees were doing that too and I suspected they were cleaning. Also thanks for everyone that answered Pablo, your answers helped me too.


#7

It isn’t really bearding. Bearding bees usually keep still to minimize their heat generation. Your bees are “washboarding” as @Rodderick says. Nobody knows why, but it is usually adolescent bees that do it. Maybe they are “working out” to build up their muscles before they start the strenuous duties of foraging! There is a very nice short video about it here:


#8

I posted this elsewhere.
Washboarding closeups.


#9

And yours is prettier, but no voice-over to explain it! :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:


#10

@Dawn_SD Nobody knows why, but it is usually adolescent bees that do it.

Ha! Obviously, their mother told them to get out of bed & do something useful like vacuum or mow the lawn. :wink:


#11

No voice over because I lack knowledge, tact, and eloquence :wink:


#12

Yes, my mistake, I was having trouble remembering the term “Wash Boarding” so all I could come up with was bearding. Sorry for the mis-info, but they are right not me.


#13

I think “washboarding” is obviously “line dancing”…
http://www.bushfarms.com/beesfaqs.htm#washboarding


#14

Dancing to the Beegees no doubt… TaTaTum!


#15

Great feedback from everyone and awesome videos @Dawn_SD and @Bobby_Thanepohn !
These creatures are definitely super interesting and fun to watch.
Anybody has tips on how to control proactively and efficiently the beetles?


#16

That would be another huge topic all its own!
Do a forum search for shb to find the many ongoing discussions


#17

Do I see your queen up in your Flow Frames? Shouldn’t she be excluded and only in your brood box? You dont’ want her laying brood in those Frames.


#18

LOL No queen up there @omnibees. Excluder is in place.


#19

Bobby’s bees am dang BIG!!! :smile:


#20

Really interesting, thank you for the share