When to use Quad?
Quad pollination hives (containing four bumblebee colonies) are especially developed for open-field crops. QUAD is weather-proof, and the excellent insulation and ventilation allow the bees to perform even better.
Each colony has a Beehome door, which keeps the bumblebees inside the hive upon their return until the door is reopened. After closing the hive with this door, necessary crop protection measures can be applied or the hive can be moved to a new location for the pollination of a different crop. Quad can be used before the crop flowers and guarantees a pollination period of six to eight weeks.
How does Quad work?
After their release, worker bumblebees start pollinating the crop. They are supported by more workers born in the weeks after their introduction.
How to use Quad
- Quads should be placed on a pallet or other structure so as to protect it from standing water and increase air flow.
- One Quad per pallet is recommended to increase distribution points.
- It is also advisable to utilize a Koppert A-frame shade structure to protect the Quad from direct sunlight. Another popular method is to use 2 pallets wired or tied at the top to create a pallet A-frame over the Quad. It is important to erect any A-frame structure in relation to the east / west movement of the sun with the open ends of the A-frame in the north / south direction, keeping the Quad in as much shade as possible.
- Pull open the 4 flaps on the top of the plastic outer Quad box.
- Open the hive doors by pulling the sliding gate on each hive upward until the two openings become visible.
- A mesh fabric covers the exit of each of the hives during shipping. Do not remove this mesh as the bees must chew through the mesh to allow then time to calm down after the shipping process. When the bumblebees can finally leave the hive, they will perform orientation flights marking the location of their hives with respect to the crop and landmarks.
- Due to the ideal foraging range it is always recommended to distribute Quads in the field with a checker board pattern. If the Quad units cannot be placed within the field, they should be evenly spaced along the perimeter of the crop.
Best working conditions Quad
Quad performs best at ambient temperatures of between 10-30°C/50-86°F
- Every hive contains food in order to keep the bumblebees in good condition during transport and storage.
- To guarantee the best pollination results, start using the hive on the day of arrival.
- Start using the hive no later than one day after arrival.
- Maintain the bumblebees at a temperature of between 15 – 25°C/59 - 77°F
- Avoid direct sunlight on the hive.
Special points of attention
- Make sure the hives and the entrances are well visible, so the bumblebees can easily find their way home.
- Do not tilt the hive to prevent sugar water from leaking.
- In case Quad has to be moved to another location it is important that all bumblebees have returned to the hive. Press the white sliding door down until one of the two openings is closed. Now, the bumblebees cannot fly out anymore. After two hours all bumblebees have returned and you can close the white sliding door completely. Place the Quad on the new location and let the bumblebees calm down for at least half an hour.