I live in an area where temperatures reach -40 degrees F. Is I okay to construct an insulation board house to go around the hive. Will this affect ventilation?
Yes go for it.
I have PIR insulation boxes round my wooden hives and extra on top of crown board. Make sure gap is around half an inch all round. No more. Ventilation is no problem. Bees can vent all they need from the entrance in winter. There will be no condensation either as the hive walls and roof will be warm
Yes it will affect ventilation. If you have some kind of top vent (I like top entrances) to let the moisture out of both the hive and the wrap, it could work well. My experience is that ventilation is more important than insulation so you need to be careful. I would try to have an airspace between the hive and the “wrap” of any kind otherwise the hive stays wet all winter. Insulating the top does the most good. I put my hives together to keep them warm rather than wrapping.
I have 14 hives to a stand and they are all touching each other.
There you are…two polarised opinions both from experience.
My hive walls and tops never reach dew point so never get condensation in the winter. I have never had a wet hive and I live in a part of the UK with well above average rainfall.
Difficult isn’t it?
What do others in your area do?
Anyone else use something like the Langstroth Insulation Box with a top 2" wide entrance for over winter? Will be my first winter and I saw that, but I’ve already learned about how the bees keep together to help stay warm so I’m not sure if’d just be a waste or not…
Sorry for re-opening an old post, but it seemed pretty relevant.