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Bees covering the bottom screen with comb


I captured a large swarm from a bee tree May 13th. I placed the swarm in a Warre with three boxes and a wood bottom board. The bees had almost filled the three boxes by June 22 so I added two more boxes below (nadiring) as well as replaced the wood bottom board with a screened bottom board.

Now the bees are building down from the fourth box and UP from the fifth/bottom box! The bees are placing wax comb on half of the screened bottom and building up a side wall.

Has anyone ever had the bees cover the floor with comb? And was it a screened bottom board? Perhaps these bees don’t like the screen? I’m thinking of getting in there soon and replacing the screen with a wood floor again. Maybe this would help?

This is my first year using a screened bottom board since that is now what Bee Thinking supplies. Before I just always used solid wood bottoms. So I have no experience with the effect screens have on bees.

I am including a photo of the bees covering the screen as seen through the viewing window.

Thanks for any suggestions or sharing of similar experiences.

Judith in Denver Colorado



How far have they built down in the bottom box? Usually I only see this in two scenarios:

  1. The colony has filled up the bottom box entirely, and builds farther down and begins attaching their combs to the screen or solid bottom.

  2. A piece of comb has fallen/broken off from above (in heat or transport, or a combination thereof), and the bees begin building up from that comb, or down to it from the combs above. In the pictures it looks like the latter.

I would just scrape it off, and if they’ve completely filled the bottom box, add another box to the bottom. Otherwise it’s going to lead to some weird combs.




Thanks Matt I will get in there and clean it up.