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What size entrance excludes Asian Hornet

 
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 115
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:00 pm    Post subject: What size entrance excludes Asian Hornet Reply with quote

Hopefully not as daft a question as it sounds.
I have searched everywhere for a minimum size, it just says 5.5mm will exclude them. I believe this will also trap drones inside ?

So, bees can get through 5.5mm ok. Drones can get through ?? ok.
Asian hornets can get through ?? at a push.

Can anyone fill in the blanks ? Sites say how long hornets are but never how wide.
I have some ideas for later when attacks may start that will allow the bees to fly through but slow the hornets. Only problem is that hornets will sometimes 'walk' inside defences. Once on the landing board they can enter the hive, this killed my last lot of bees.
Hornets are not happy being trapped inside a mesh barrier but will do it sometimes. They will walk down the hive and through the mesh.

Just fyi. I have tried the 13mm sq mesh and does slow bees down and they can be caught by hornets on the mesh. So I saw in Spain someone using 25mm chicken wire, bees whizz through, hornets can only just make it so slow down.
Works until a hornet goes inside, bees will chase it from the landing board but it usually has to drop the bee to get out. So they tend to learn to stay outside the mesh. Just trying to guess best guard size to keep them out of the actual hive.
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00buzzbee
Scout Bee


Joined: 31 Jan 2012
Posts: 338
Location: Lytchett Matravers,Poole, Dorset

PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 6:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have looked into this and by all accounts there is nothing that you can do to prevent Asian Hornets getting into your hives. If the entrances are too small for them they will also be too small for our bees to function properly.

The French beekeepers resort to trapping the queens early in the season which reduces the quantity of Asian Hornet nests throughout the year which I understand has been very successful. I have made up some simple traps and put one out in late Spring. It seem to work as I have had a couple of European hornet queens trapped in the past.

Luckily we have not had any Asian Hornet sightings in Dorset as yet but when they do arrive I'm sure they will devastate our honey bee colonies. Crying or Very sad Crying or Very sad
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charentejohn
Foraging Bee


Joined: 26 May 2012
Posts: 115
Location: Central France - Charente

PostPosted: Sun Jun 23, 2019 10:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

This is a partial solution, look to spain / portugal as they seem to have a real problem. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MBfaKcT0hPg A little ott as just a barrier in front of the hive will do ?
I am going to try 25mm chicken wire inside 25mm bird netting, bees pass ok but hornets slow down.
They will adapt but need a little help by keeping the hornets away from the entrance. They pin the bees down so they can't feed properly, they hover 15cm from the entrance. Move them to 1m+ from the entrance and the bees go in all directions and avoid them.

Idea is to make it too time consuming for the hornets. Takes energy to predate so if it takes 10+ mins to catch a bee they may go elsewhere. Problem is they kill everything else too, neighbour saw one killing a wasp.

I have a warre with vented floor, this gives an entrance 30cm wide but 8cm high which should put off a few as the hive wall is 25mm thick. Tight fit for a hornet.
They can be dealt with in time. Normal hornets are not a problem, been there for ages, they just take the odd one. Asian hornets come in groups and just don't stop, like a conveyor belt.
Can't find the video anymore but a spanish keeper with about 10 hives was alive with asian hornets, that was scary.
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