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When to move bottom board to lower slot in hot weather?


#1

We live in a temperate climate in Victoria BC (Canada) with hot summers in the 20s to low /mid 30s Celsius, beside the Pacific Ocean.

It recently got hot - 26 degrees - as summer is starting. We installed a 5-frame nuc 3 weeks ago and they are doing well with now a total of 6.5 of 8 deep frames drawn and lots of honey, pollen and brood in them. So an increase in 1.5 frames.

The bottom board below the screen is set currently in the top position. Now that it’s warming up should I move it to the lower position? What should my decision be based on?

Thank you!


#2

Hi Maureen, I would leave the slider in the top slot. The bees, in my view will air condition the hive more effectively without added ventilation. My theory is based on the information in the video found on you tube entitled “City of Bees” by the Moody Institute of Science.


#3

Hi Maureen, there is lots of discussion about when to move the board, Jeff has answered you pretty well. The bees will control the hive temperature in everything but the extremes.
Here in a sub-tropical climate we would call 25c cool so it is all relative. Leave the board where it is is my advise along with Jeff.
Sounds like your hive is going well.
Regards


#4

Thank you to both of you, @JeffH do @Peter48. Much appreciated!


#5

My pleasure to pass on information to people in need Maureen. Thinking further on your climate I would leave the slider board where it is in the top slot permanently. The bees will do any adjustments to the hive temperature themselves by fanning their wings at the hive entrance if it gets too hot for them, but I wouldn’t think you have the climate for that to happen.
Jeff lives 30 minutes drive from me and is a wealth of well thought out information and a nice person as well. He certainly knows his bees.
Regards


#6

I would say to leave it sealed. Think of it this way, the bees work hard to cool the air. Its cooler and denser so sinks. If you open the bottom their cool air just drops out the bottom of their hive so they have to start work all over again. In hot weather I have a baffled top opening with fly screen to allow gentle ventillation but never a screened bottom and we regularly get over 40 degrees in summer.

Cheers
Rob.


#7

Greeting Neighbor!

I live in the foothill country of the Cascades S.E. of Seattle. We are getting same same temps (after I converted). I leave my slider in the top slots year around. That lower slot isn’t for us. That lets in too much cooler air n causes the bees A.C. Issues…

Our bees keep the hive at appro. 94 dgs F for best laying n brood rearing. If the need it cooled you should see breeding (lots of bees hanging out on the front porch or front of the hive. This is very normal n a unique experience your first few times. Bees will bring water inside the hive n fan to create air circulation n the cooling they want. Be know BEST !

I have two Flow-hives n 7 other SBBoard hives. In our moderate climate it’s not good to lower ! All this has been discuss somewhat on here in the last few days as the Wx warms up across the Northern Hemisphere.

Sounds like your colony is doing well. Do you have a second deep super with frames ready to go one soon (not the Flow-super). In our northern climate you’ll need that second box to supply your girls with their winter needs of honey :honey_pot:.

As you know we have a long gray damp, cool winter up here so 60 to 80 lbs of food us needed for the girls to safely survive. Are the large wild blackberries in full bloom up there yet. My local blackberries are at about 70 to 80% our here now. Hoping for a longer 3 week blackberry forage thus 2018 season.

Cheers n good luck :four_leaf_clover:,

Gerald


#8

Thanks, Rob. That’s a good perspective. We all feel we are wilting if it hits 33 degrees here. :slight_smile:


#9

Thanks, Cascadia neighbour! That’s super helpful. And yes some of our bees are bearding - have been for maybe a bit less than a week? So that was helpful, too.