View Full Version : Screened bottom board
03-13-2003, 12:39 AM
I have 4 hives that I ordered screened bottom boards for. My question, would the hive be better off if I added a slatted rack or would it matter?
03-13-2003, 04:23 AM
Most hives are run without one. I intend to experiment a bit this year and see what I think. What the slatted rack adds is some cluster space. If you ever watched a hive on a hot night with a "bee beard" on the front of bees that were pushed out because of the heat, it gives them somewhere to go and more room to ventilate the hive.
I don't know how beneficial it is, but you can do fine without one. Whether you'd do better with one, I don't really know. It seems most popular for raising comb honey like the Ross Rounds or other things that are hard to get the bees to draw out completely and prettily.
03-13-2003, 12:54 PM
I would say that it would depend on your reason for the screen bottom board.
If the screen bottom board is for mite control by allowing for mites to fall out of the hive. Then I would say do not use a slatted rack. The slatted rack would block the drop path and allow mites to re-attach to the next passing bee.
03-13-2003, 01:03 PM
Half of the mites will still fall through.
03-13-2003, 05:15 PM
i've played with slatted racks and i do think the bees like them,i think fewer mite fall through down to the screen, but maybe the bees are less stressed,crowded,damp,whatever and so it's an acceptable trade off.anyway hives with a slatted rack,in my experience seem to do a little better,i know this is nowhere near a scientific response.
03-17-2003, 08:14 PM
how small a hole can you use in the screen
will the mites fall thru screen like the screen on your house door. 1/8 is hard to find if you want to build your own bottom boards. I dont want to buy a whole roll.
03-17-2003, 10:28 PM
No, they won't fall through the small holes of a screen door mesh.
I believe Dadant.com sells the stuff in smaller pieces.
An idea I read somewhere (perhaps even in this Discussion group) is to use plastic mesh used for making rugs or cushions or something like that, that you can buy in a sewing/knitting supply store.
03-18-2003, 05:05 AM
I did buy a whole roll at the hardware store. None of the lumber yards had any and several hardware stores didn't have any, but I could have bought it by the foot if I wanted. Also, some of the bee suppliers sell it but I think it's worth buying the roll and not paying the shipping. You'll use it sooner or later if you keep making bottom boards and vents for bees.
03-18-2003, 02:42 PM
I was able to purchase 3 yards of 36" wide 1/8" hardware cloth for about $1.79 at Pleasant's Hardware here in Richmond.
03-18-2003, 04:38 PM
I just received a new slatted rack from Betterbee, the nice part is the slats go the same direction as the frames. That might help the mite fall thing a little.
03-20-2003, 07:00 AM
I've bought 1/8" hardware cloth at Ace Hardware.
I buy 1/8 hardware cloth or screen wire as I call it by the foot either in 3 foot width or 4 foot width. Not very expensive. At Ace Hardware. Darrell
03-20-2003, 10:35 AM
84 lumber also carries #8 hardware.
03-20-2003, 10:38 AM
BTW I believe #7 will also work, but I've had an easier time finding #8.
03-22-2003, 08:18 AM
I bought my #7 at bettebee 1 800 632 3379, but you can found it at Sears Hardware if you have one close to you.