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Predators of Honey Bees

Indications of skunk feeding at hive entrance

Picture 5 of 11

To capture bees, skunks scratch at the hive entrance and guard bees that come out to investigate the disturbance. A successful skunk will repeat the process several times and may feed at the hive entrance for an hour or more to rapidly depleting the bee population. Colonies visited by skunks may become defensive since skunks usually return night after night. Skunk predation can be detected by the front of the hive being scratched and muddy and the vegetation in front of the hive packed down or torn up.