SHB . . . I guess they're here now . . .question
OK, so last year I had purchased a new hive. I figured it came with SHB since I've never seen them before last year. The hive came from almonds. Anyway, the hive was booming and SHB was never an issue, although I did see around 20 when I opened it up for the last time in the fall. I took over 125 lbs of honey off the hive.
Fast forward to this month. I have found over 125 dead SHB so far on my SBB insert. All dead, until today. I found two alive. My guess is that my single hive was the only one within miles, and every beetle went into it to overwinter. It appears that at least a few survived.
I have now put an oil tray under the SBB. I filled it with canola oil. I realize that SHB will not be a problem around here until mid summer (if at all). I'd just like to kill as many as possible by then. We have very black topsoil around here too.
Questions: How often is it necessary to change out the oil? Has anyone else in Northern IL experienced SHB. My brother has seen a few, but not like me. Any insight would be appreciated.
Re: SHB . . . I guess they're here now . . .question
There is no hard answer to changing oil. You could actually remove the beetles and trash and leave the oil, or you could change it when it has too much trash for your taste.
Small hive beetles usually fly in the front door. They do not usually come with the hive. Moral of the story use an entrance reducer!
Full sun helps the bees control SHB. I add a dark cover when the SHB numbers go up and put the lighter cover back when the numbers go down (in the Sunshine State!)