Propolis on the Hive Entrance


We don’t typically use entrance reducers on our hives in winter. Here’s what bees from one hive did to the entrance. This colony was wintering in a 5-frame nuc box. Bees sealed the entrances with propolis, leaving only a small entrance hole, the size they wanted. We like to encourage bees to use lots of propolis, as it increases bees resistance to disease.

In the photo below, both entrances are propolized: the standard entrance just above the bottom board, and the round entrance that is partially blocked by the plastic circle.



This is a close-up of the bottom entrance.


Here is a close-up of the round entrance. They left a small opening to come in and out here too.



This propolis below is on the lid ventilation hole. Bees left just enough room to climb in and out through three smaller holes. You can see a bee poking its little head out in the top photo.



Posted in Beekeeping, the Honey Company and tagged , , , .


  1. Aloha,

    My name is Malcolm and thank you for this insightful information. I am trying to find the right sized mesh screening for a bee hive project that the bee will not propolis close-out. I don’t know if that’s possible given they tend to seal any excess spaces. I’m looking to work with the bee air properties and the use of a mesh-like screen that will allow their air to pass through. I had through maybe some kind of rubber screen that will allow me to collect the propolis and clean the screen vent. Do you have any suggestions or recommendations on this?


    • When we want to use a screen like that, we use #8 hardware cloth. We got a large roll of it from the hardware store several years back and are still using it.

      Hope that helps!

      Alicia Moulton

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