Monday, October 18, 2010

The Quiet Box

When I inspected Myrina the other day I used a 'Quiet Box' for the first time.  I hadn't meant too but it suddenly came in handy.  After opening her up I pulled out the customary 10th frame and set it aside.  Normally I would then shift all other frames to the right as I inspect the hive.  However this time there wasn't much room to work with.  Here at the end of the season there's a good bit of bur comb.  So I needed to make more room.  I took out another frame and it still wasn't enough room left for cleaning the frame rests.  I couldn't take out another one without causing a robbing situation.  I needed somewhere to put these frames.

I remembered reading about 'Quiet Boxes'.  I have an empty nuc sitting around doing nothing anyway so I went and got it.  I set it up and put 3 frames in it.  Instead of the regular cover I simply used a shop towel; easier to move around.  I did use the regular BB and then reduced it to a single opening.  After i put the towel over it the bees on those frame calmed down considerably.  I had expected them to fly out and back to the main hive but they stayed in the nuc the whole time.

 A quiet nuc & big inspection opening (Mary)

Now I had 3 frames worth of space to work with.  It was a lot easier to scrape propolis away now that I could get my hand in the box.  It is a definite improvement for working with the bees.  I did it again when I inspected Mary.  Same results, Good ones. 

When I took off the top boxes I put then on my portable hive stands as usual but also draped another towel over them too.  This also worked great.  I think one of the best things about keeping bees is continually learning new tricks.

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