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  • General Q&A, Bee chat and only Bee chat please
General Q&A, Bee chat and only Bee chat please
 #7515  by Patrick
 31 May 2020, 21:48
After 20 years of peaceful coexistence this persistent dry weather has obviously left my local sett pretty hungry. They can’t get at the worms as they have gone down.

Unfortunately they first had a go at a nuc on the ground (with three bricks on top) and all the combs were chewed out and frames scattered about. I rather hoped it was a one off opportunistic foray and then two days ago they took out the only single brood box colony (and expanding ex-nuc), all frames gone, hive scattered and roof knocked off another. Very disappointing. Tracking the disturbance several frames went back to a huge burrow.

Have tonight put a double strand electric fence round hives and cross fingers they unlearn they habit when it rains again. I have left all the supers on as the weight makes the stack less vulnerable to being knocked over.

Don’t blame the badgers just hope I can dissuade them from making a habit of it. 🙄
 #7524  by Steve 1972
 01 Jun 2020, 12:42
I would be gutted if i turned up to that sight however i am lucky enough not to have such a problem..i have a good electric fence ready to be deployed just in case though..
 #7534  by Patrick
 01 Jun 2020, 22:26
Cheers Steve 👍.

Yes I was pretty low when a I saw it, did look like mindless vandalism but obviously in this case not mindless because the badgers were genuinely hungry and didn’t just do it for kicks.

Strimmed carefully around perimeter of hive groups then set lower strand about 6 inches and second at about 10 - 12 inches off the ground. Seems to have done the trick. Lost two colonies and 15 frames but could have been a lot worse.
 #7539  by AdamD
 02 Jun 2020, 09:01
I got sight of a badger one night with a wildlife camera in February - it seems to have gone from the burrow it was in although I have been told that there are badgers a few hundred yards away. The camera has died (they seem to last for a short while only :evil: so I can't check again). So I have been warned Patrick, thank you!
 #7544  by NigelP
 02 Jun 2020, 09:32
Commiserations on that Patrick. We have a badger that wanders around our lawn digging for worms. So far no problems with garden hives.
 #7546  by Japey Edge
 02 Jun 2020, 10:55
Sorry to read that Patrick. It must be gutting. I hope you get no more badger attacks.
 #7548  by Patrick
 02 Jun 2020, 12:14
Thanks y’all for kind thoughts. Did wonder about posting it as don’t want badgers to be considered a beekeeping problem - for two decades they haven’t been for me despite being in the middle of a large extended sett and most beekeepers co- exist with them without issue (whether aware of them or not).

But in these unusual drought conditions they obviously can be and I thought sharing a possible solution might be useful. After all, cost of a cheapo fence set is less than the value of a nuc.
 #7644  by Patrick
 06 Jun 2020, 11:10
Just to close off the thread..

May be weather change or electric fence or both, but no repetition of hive upsets since fence went up. When I went to switch on fence late last evening nearly tripped over a badger coming out of sett who hadn’t heard me approaching- made us both jump 😁!

Hopefully one to put down to experience.
 #8073  by NigelP
 30 Jun 2020, 17:26
Just had a hive stand with 2 hives pulled over by a badger. I presume he?she? got caught up with one of the hive straps and panicked, as I found the strap about 20 m's away from the hives. I guess I must have not put the strap back around that hive due to the height and it was loose by the stand....Both hives double brood 4 supers with a snelgrove method II swarm control going on. Bees were not happy at all as I was putting them back together. Fortunately nothing seemed broken ....which is amazing given the amount of honey in the supers. Now set a trail camera to see if they comeback.
 #8079  by Steve 1972
 30 Jun 2020, 20:20
I have a good electric fence transformer here but no wire.. if you want to give it a go and can source a bit of wire you can borrow it.. i would be taking more drastic actions but hopefully i never encounter such a sad sight..