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Should I leave the bottom tray in my flow hive all the time?

Hi Guys,

I am about to install a Nuc in my Flow Hive 2 for the first time.

I am brand new to beekeeping and am wondering if I should leave the bottom tray in my flow hive all the time or only put it in occasionally to check for pests?

I live in the hills north of Melbourne, Australia where it is currently not that hot and relatively cool at night.

Does the climate dictate if I leave the tray in the hive or take it out?

Thanks in advance,

Michael.

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I have been studying the flow2. I would leave the tray in full time, as well as keep the vents closed. The bees, in my view don’t need any added ventilation. The entrance reduced to about 15cm is all that is required. You could reduce it down a bit more during winter.

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Hi Jeff,

Thanks for the advice. I appreciate it!.

Cheers,

Michael.

G’day Michael, you’re most welcome. It’s warm on the Sunshine Coast at the moment. We’re supposed to get 32 today & 33 tomorrow. Then cooling down again for a few days.

I would never have an open bottom on my hive. Its a big opening for pests like SHB to get direct access into the hive where the guard bees can never patrol and in warm weather when the bees have cooled the air in their hive it just falls out the bottom (cool air is denser that hot air) which just gives them more work.

Cheers
Rob.

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Hi Rob,

Thanks for the advice. Thats great to be able to ask experts!.

Sounds nice Jeff. The weather is still fairly unpredictable down here in Victoria.

Cheers,

Michael.

Your climate might ‘bounce’ a bit but it isn’t extreme. Leave you tray in permanently and as Jeff says, you could close down the entrance in your Winter. Keep an eye open for SHB as the climate warms up.
Cheers

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Thanks Peter.

Cheers,

Michael.

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I agree with all of the great advice above. The only thing I would add is that the bees can’t clean that tray in the way that they would clean a hive floor. It will rapidly accumulate hive debris, like pollen balls, wax etc. You should probably empty and clean it every week or two, to avoid wax moths and even SHB from turning it into a breeding ground. :dizzy_face:

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I also would leave it in all year around.

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Thanks everyone.

Cheers,

Michael.

1 Like