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Corflute Bottom Board


#1

I’m a weekender in Bridgetown Western Australia. Nuc in April this year. Going well and put Flow on top 4 weeks ago and filling fast. Should I move Corflute down to bottom slot to encourage ventilation as it’s warming up or leave in top slot? Appreciate the advice of those
more experienced!


#2

Hi @jimh,
I’m certainly not considering myself experienced! However, I have just made contact with Flow support regarding getting a lot of bees congregating between the coreflute slider and the mesh. Park of their response was answering my concern about having the CF in the top position during the heat of summer, here’s the response.

If they are a new colony the size of the hive shouldn’t be to over crowded and heating will likely not be an issue.

_If it does reach really hot temperatures then it might be an idea to check the bees are ok. _

The ventilation is good to maintain productivity and lessen bearding, the bees will maintain their temperature though. So I wouldn’t be to concerned.

_You could also look at putting a bit of fly screen across the back of the screened bottom board with the corflute slider in the lower slot. This will ensure the bees are enclosed and they will become aware that this is an unusable space for them.


#3

I like @Philat39’s post, but I have some thoughts too. :blush:

My screened bottom board is one of those with faulty mesh, so when I put the slider in the lower slot, bees would go down through the mesh and hang out underneath. Somehow, many of them never worked out how to move up again over night. That combined with opportunistic ants building a nest in the gap has made me prefer to leave the slider in the upper slot.

Your latitude is almost exactly the same as mine, and it looks like your climate is very similar too (you get a bit more rain). I have found that the bees ventilate just fine, even on hot days and even with the entrance permanently reduced to 15cm wide. I have an Arnia hive monitor with a brood temperature probe, and they have no trouble keeping the temperature at a healthy 34C all year with the slider in the top slot.

In summary, I think you should do what you find convenient. If you put the slider in the lower slot, you should clean it regularly, as it will gather wax fragments and hive debris - very attractive to SHB and wax moths. If you put it in the upper slot, the bees will clean it themselves.


#4

Thanks for that Phil.


#5

Thank you Dawn. Very helpful to gain confidence as a newbee!


#6

I prefer the upper slot too as I have found some chalkbrood mummies get wedged between the wires in the screen and the bees can’t get them out. In fact, if I remove the bottom screen and turn it upside down and bang it on the ground, some mummies still remain well and truly lodged in the mesh.


#7

With hives at an altitude of 600 metres, I have removed the corflute completely for summer on the advice of a bee specialist, leaving a completely ventilated screen bottom. His advice is to take it out completely until it starts to cool at night in autumn. Doing so will prevent bearding on hot days. I noticed bees fanning at the entrance to one hive with the corflute half out. I removed it completely and the bees immediately stopped fanning and disappeared. Look up Moethebeeman on Facebook; he has an interesting picture this week showing the difference in the effect on bees between screened open bottoms and closed bottoms on hot days.


#8

The bees could be flat out inside the hive dealing with the hot air that enters the hive through the open screen.

You cover the screen to keep the cold air out, why not cover the screen to keep the hot air out?


#9

Not on a day on which it is 24 degrees Celsius as it was this day.


#10

Did you get bearding on a 24C day? Your hive could be over crowded. Your bees could be thinking about swarming. Something to consider.