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I've been keeping this blog for all of my beekeeping years and I am beginning my 19th year of beekeeping in April 2024. Now there are more than 1300 posts on this blog. Please use the search bar below to search the blog for other posts on a subject in which you are interested. You can also click on the "label" at the end of a post and all posts with that label will show up. At the very bottom of this page is a list of all the labels I've used.

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I began this blog to chronicle my beekeeping experiences. I have read lots of beekeeping books, but nothing takes the place of either hands-on experience with an experienced beekeeper or good pictures of the process. I want people to have a clearer picture of what to expect in their beekeeping so I post pictures and write about my beekeeping saga here.Master Beekeeper Enjoy with me as I learn and grow as a beekeeper.

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Friday, June 09, 2006

Robber Screen for the Construction Challenged

I wish I had taken shop - I liked Home Ec but I wish I had learned more about hammers, nails and saws. My father is very "handy" and has complicated tools like metal lathes and drill presses. When I was little, I could watch him work in his workshop, but I couldn't help - only watch.

I did learn a few practical things by osmosis, I guess. I know to put soap on a screw before turning it and it will go in smoother. I know to think about where the screwdriver will go when it slips instead of using it and having an unforeseen accident. But I can't easily build things on my own.

So I was thrilled to find and adjustable window screen - 10 " high; 19" - 33" wide.
For $6.97, I was going to make a robber screen.

The robbers are attracted to the hive because of the honey. They are drawn to the entrance of the hive where they smell the honey. The bees who live in a hive are attracted to the queen. They will try to move heaven and earth to get to her.

The theory of the robber screen is that you are placing a barrier in front of the hive entrance - thus keeping out the robbers - and making a new entrance several inches above the original one that the resident bees will use. The residents will find it because they will work hard to find a way to get to the queen.

I cut a piece of molding 1.5"X.75" and nailed it
to the wood at the edge of the adjustable screen.
The screen at its original width was too wide for the front of the hive. With the molding nailed in, it blocks the main entrance and creates an entrance about 10 " up from the original.
I then took the contraption I had nailed together and used bungee cords to hold it to the hive.

The bees in Bermuda (where the screen has been attached) were furious. They declared it loudly from the front of the hive. I left for the evening hoping they would find their way into the hive.Posted by Picasa


  1. Wow, what a clever idea. Although I've never had any trouble with robbing, I'll have to keep this in mind. Hope it works. Also, I have the username "Apis629" in beemaster and, I would like to show you my bee-blog. http://apiscomb.blogspot.com

  2. make a 15 square cm area by 15cm long entrance tunnel.
    This mimics a typical tree nest entrance. Honeybees know how to defend if they have one of these. you will find lots of your bees will hang out in it ready to defend the nest.

  3. Suggest putting the screen on at night or early morning before the bees are out and about. That way, the first time they confront the screen, they must learn the way out. That done, the way back in is made much easier. I use the robbing screen made by Country Rubes, which is very similar. Works well.

  4. I gather the best time to put a robbing screen on is at night or very early in the morning. I'm told that the hived bees (i.e. the resident ones) will very quickly find the right way out/exit, but that foreign/robbing bees will buzz around outside and be fooled.

  5. I now (2018) keep robber screens on my hives all the time. Instead of this screen, I use Billy Davis' robber screen (search blog for this) and I never have robbing with the ongoing Billy Davis screen. Takes the bees a little while to adjust but after that they are fine.


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