Predations on honey bees (Arthropoda) by vertebrate pests (Chordata) and control of nuisance
The purpose of this article is to improve management of established vertebrate pests, as well as increase the alertness about exotic threats to honey bee industry. Large numbers of vertebrate animals such as amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals like to feed on honey and are recognized to predate upon honey bees contributing as most damaging group of pests. Honey bees and colonies are not immune to predators from predation and it can take a variety of forms, from destruction of comb to physical dismembering of colony by hungry pests. The principal method of damage prevention is use of electric fencing for bears, while trapping is mostly used method for control of skunks. Establish the apiary away from trees, which will prevent bears from climbing and dropping inside the fence. A piece of chicken wire can be stapled to the bottom board and stretched in front of hive to discourage skunks and other animals. Exclusion is considered the best means of resolving mouse problems, and birds can be repelled by hanging video tape and elect the apiary site carefully to avoid home ranges and visiting. Mice also nest in stored bee equipment resulting in same kind of damage, therefore care is needed to keep these pests away from stored equipment and also retain grasses mowed for a distance around hives. Add an upper entrance, install a fence around bee yard, keep colonies on stands, cover top and bottom of combs with a pile of supers and a queen excluder, wire screen, or telescoping lid to prevent other predators. Although beekeepers want a hive in dappled sunlight, avoid placing hives near the woods. These mammals can be kept out of colonies by reducing the size of the entrance as the weather begins to cool down.