I live in south Florida do I need my corflute slider board in and if so how often do you clean it.
I have read several trains of thought on this. Some like to use it for IPM (integrated pest management). The varroa mites can fall thru the screened bottom board out of the hive. But it also allows an opening for other pests to get into the hive. If the colony is not strong then the bees may have a hard time protecting it from the invading insects. I would imagine you have your share of small hive beetles in your area among many other ants, etc. I would try to reach out from others in the south florida area and get their advice.
My guess is that some will not use them and others will. I try and check mine when I do inspections. I do it weekly during the summer. If it is dirty I use a washcloth and warm water to clean it. I have had a few spots that were tough but I was able to get it clean with the water and a little pressure with the cloth.
If you are in an SHB area then close the bottom or you just provide a HUGE entrance for the beetles and make it well nigh impossible for the bees to protect. Give the guard bees a chance…
but isn’t the whole SBB thing primarily intended for beetle control?
I believe it was initially developed to be part of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for varroa mites. I know that Cedar felt it would be helpful for SHB control, especially if you put some kind of trap below the screen. I have fallen out of love with SBBs over the last couple of years, and I am gradually returning to solid floors.
Now how do I approach this Love/Hate subject ?! . I live up here in Puget Sound region. Each region that SSBoard are found in are different. Up here we don’t have those little busy black shiny beetles. But we do have varroa n waxy moths. That said where do I go from here ? .
This is only my second season back into the world of bees n bee pests ! So far under our local condition … I like them but can easily see why Dawn n others are falling out of Love with the SBBoards.
All my hives 6 regular hives (8 n 10 framers) are equipment with the screened bottoms. My 4 double deep Nuc’s have them also. But I keep them closed n not for ventilation. We don’t need an extra Air Conditioning up here in the Cascade Foothills.
I find the SBB’s very handy for quick inspections especially during our wet chilly gray winters. I use the SBB as part of my intergrated mite management system currently n since it seems to work n I love killing off every mite I can … I still hold a positive liking to these more expensive bottoms. I’ve seen a couple small outbreaks of wax moths in the waxy flakes under the screen … Since I at least inspect the SBB almost weekly i quickly pulled the slider out, sprayed with Clorox solution, rinse n dried … No more waxy moths last season in the one hive at all ( maybe I’m just lucky ) so far ! . I’ll take all the luck I can get !
I just bought two more ! I’m stacking my empty or bee less boxes with empty honeycomb on top of SSBoards with slider out. This allows an upward flow of drying sir thru my empties. I also keep crown boards on top with screens over those opening. It might not totally help … But so far so G:eyes:D ️
Now that’s my take n 2 cents worth on those SBBoard n why. You don’t live where I am so maybe I’d heed Dawn n others that live more Southern ! Up here with foot in mouth maybe but what’s NEW ️
Cheers n take care ,