View Full Version : screened bottom boards in winter
09-13-2003, 05:37 AM
Those using screened bottom boards, do you close them up for the winter or has anyone tried leaving them open? I'm sure this varies where you live, but some beekeepers are saying that they think it's best to leave them open for increased winter ventalation. They say that the bees can maintain their cluster temperature regardless of the big hole in the bottom and it doesn't hurt them. Has anyone else tried leaving them open, and what are the benefits and disadvantages? Thanks!
09-13-2003, 06:43 AM
There are many who leave them open. I will probably try one or two hives open, but winters are sometimes pretty brutal here and I'm not sure how wise it is to leave all of them open all winter. I don't care what anyone says, the bees try to seal up every crack before winter (they are hualing propolis in larger amounts right now), so why would I want to create a huge hole in the bottom of their hive? I think it might work great in a warm climate, but what about a week of -10 degrees F? You have to make your own choice. Personally I wouldn't put all your eggs in one basket. I also wouldn't jump to conclusions from one winter. Winters vary a lot from one year to the next. Last year we had a very mild one and about three years ago we had a doozy.
09-13-2003, 09:46 AM
There is a big heat loss out of sbb's even in warm climates. I've seen bees in Texas that failed to produce brood in the bottem box. Bees in the same yard that had solid bottem boards were doing great.
09-13-2003, 07:17 PM
Greeting . . .
I plan to close my SBB w/ detection board and leave the SBB unit on hive stand, thru winter.
During winter, I want to check the pull-out DB a few times. The accumulation of debris should offer clues about what is going on inside.