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Are The Bees Too Hot?

We’ve had a 39c day with three 40c days in a row to follow. The bees were out of the hive at 6.30 pm, ( see pic) Should I be moving the coreflute sheet to the lower position slot to let in more ventilation ? I have the Flowhive Classic. Cheers Dave.

Hi Dave we’ve been discussing these issues lately.

That is normal, called bearding. Make sure they have plenty of water, and if you can provide shade it is better.

My corflute is in the top position.


I agree with @Numbatino, leave the slider in the top position. Bees cool by air flow, and if you put it in the lower slot, it can really mess with their ventilation and evaporation efforts. Now all we need is @JeffH to give you a link to his favorite video on this subject! :blush:


On a hot day with a strong hive sometimes the front is covered in bees and bees are hanging down to the ground.



What you are seeing there in that pic is totally normal Dave and really nice to see. It is an indicator of a fairly strong and healthy hive.
Leave the cor-flute in the top slot, I would paint the roof white, including the metal.
Don’t super the hive till the colony is really needing it with 80% of all the cells over all of the frames is in use for stores or brood.
You might need to reduce the entrance size when the weather cools off in Autumn and to reduce the risk of robbing in a dearth so that the bees can better defend their stores.


So what would a swarm in an attic look like when the sun beats on the roof…what is normal behavior? My hives look like this for the summer months…day and night…it’s normal when the ambient temperature is warm inside my beehouse…but you may want to listen to beekeepers here who have lost hives to heat…that doesn’t happen here…well at least not yet.

Photo is of nucs in early summer.

I agree with the others, definitely paint the roof white. You could also reduce the entrance during the heat. I would reduce it in the center, leaving about 75mm on either side, that will further help the bees. That video is “City of Bees”, it should be everyone’s favorite. The answers to a LOT of questions are contained in that short video.


I totally agree with you Jeff, A Flow Hive as it is made has a full width entrance and I don’t like that concept as it leaves to much area for the colony to defend if there is a dearth and robbing. I have found that in a sub-tropical climate and having two small entrances on the bottom board works better than a single one of the same width and in a colder climate it reduces the cold draft coming in directly to the brood cluster in the middle frames. Reducing the entrance doesn’t seem to increase the cluster temperature, the bees will still fan in cooler air if it is too hot.
‘City of Bees’ is a must see with lots of valuable information in it.


Wow what a great photo.

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Thank you, I have now placed a white board on top to the metal roof.

Thank you, photography is another hobby mine.Cheers Dave.

Hi @JeffH, have just put a piece of wood in the middle of the hive entrance, it now has 2 opening about the 75mm each as you suggested. I had to wait until about 8.30 before they had settled down for the night. It was funny, about 4 or 5 bees came out to check out what I had done, walking around the blockage several times before giving it the buzz of approval. Mind you we shall see what they all think of it tomorrow, they mightn’t be so impressed in the light of day.:rofl::rofl::rofl:


Would polystyrene be of any help to help keep the hives cooler?

any insulation is always going to be good for the bees to regulate the hive temperature

Thought Id add a photo showing how my bees behaved on a 30 degree night we had recently.

A thing of beauty!


The bees are pretty clever, they seem to know where to find water. And in this case a good steady supply.