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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Galveston county, Texas, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Full sun in deep south?

    I am setting up my first hives with my bees coming in a week, but I am wondering how much full sun matters in the deep south. I live in town and am putting them in my backyard, so I decided on a location that keeps them out of view from the street/neighbors, is near our pond, and has a northern windbreak. I've been reading here that there is not a "perfect" location, but everyone seems to stress full sun, and this spot would only have full sun half the day, spotty sun half the day. However since we only get about 2-3 weeks of what we call winter here, and thats not even all at once, and usually about 6 months of the year it is 90 -100 degrees, I thought maybe full sun would be detrimental?

    Oh, and I almost forgot to mention, the tree that is responsible for the "spotty" sun part of the day I thought would help protect my hives during the rainy season (hurricane season). Is this accurate or faulty logic?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    OKC, OK USA
    Posts
    2,870

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    I think the main drive behind full sun these days is to help control SHB.
    Mike Forbes
    Red Dirt Apiaries

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Galveston county, Texas, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Okay. I had checked with Texas Dept. of Agriculture and we dont have those, just varoa mites.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Santa Rosa County, Florida
    Posts
    407

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Afternoon shade is best here.Full morning sun and east facing entrances will get the girls off to work earlier.That said,some of mine are in full ,all day sun.Those get styrofoam shade boards
    when June rolls around.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Harris County, Texas
    Posts
    20

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Quote Originally Posted by Phoenix42 View Post
    I had checked with Texas Dept. of Agriculture and we dont have those, just varoa mites.
    Hmmm. Well then I guess those were some pretty dang big mites I saw last week.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Galveston county, Texas, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    LOL. Figures. So do I need some sort of beetle trap?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    lake jackson, texas, USA
    Posts
    168

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    I live about 40 miles south of you and I see them in my hives. They haven't been bad enough for me to do anything about them though. I just let the bees take care of them. My hives get some shade but are mostly in the sun all day and they seem to handle it fine. Good luck with your new hives and enjoy!!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    I am in Kingwood, TX (25 miles NE of Houston, yet still part of Houston...). I have mine in what I would call full shade. I did this after the 30+ days of 100+ temps we had last summer. I also constructed my TBH to be shallower, with combs only being about 9" tall instead of the original designed 11". Last thing I want is to open the hive on a hot day and find a bunch of collapsed comb.

    Whoever you talked to at the Dept of Ag. is full of bologna. I ordered my bees from BeeWeaver in Austin, and they told me they have problems with SHB, but that is about all. I have killed two that were hiding in my feeder, but have not seen any actually in the hive. I do have a chunk of drone comb that I'm thinking about cutting out, freezing, and dissecting to see if I find any more evidence of them. Just make sure your hive is neat and does not have any hiding spots for the beetles. The bees will naturally pursue them and run them out of the hive.

    I don't know about the hurricane logic, but I suppose it is as good as any. Unless the tree falls on the hive...(knock on wood)
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,310

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    1) IMHO Heat causes more abscondings around here than anything else (except maybe for RIFA), so I don't think a little shade will hurt anything...lol
    2) I just squashed 4 SHB in a feral hive during a cut-out in Neuces Co, TX last night...you have SHB, don't believe the AG person who mis-informed you.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Perry, Florida, USA
    Posts
    226

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Mine are in the sun full time every day. I havent had any problems with SHB in that location. At another yard they have late afternoon shade and SHB slimed several frames on a weak hive. As long as your hives are strong though they arent a problem.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Poplar Bluff, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    2,308

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Your location with a lot of sun should work, but for heaven's sake, put shb traps in! Better to be safe than sorry.
    Regards,
    Steven
    "If all you have is a hammer, the whole world is a nail." - A.H. Maslow

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Galveston county, Texas, USA
    Posts
    25

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Thank you to all who responded! I won't worry about the part shade. As for the SHB, I've browsed this forum for info, and I think for now I will try CD jewel cases under the inner covers.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Birmingham, Alabama, USA
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    CD cases? Can you make some sort of SHB trap with those?

    Like you, I'm in town and had some decisions to make as to where to locate my hives. I chose the one corner of the garden that our dogs know they cannot enter. I have my hive entrances pointing away from our main garden/yard area and the hives are located so that there is either a privacy fence or similarly tall bush about 8 feet in front of the entrances, the entrances face either south-east or south. My hope was that having an obstacle in front of the entrances would encourage the bees to spiral upwards before they head out to forage and discouarge them from buzzing across the yard/garden at human head height. It's worked great and by the time the bees are out of the bee yard, they are well above our heads.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Ha, don't worry about the dogs. I was actually making a video of my beehive the other day and my dog was wandering around trying to look at the bees. One popped him on the lip when he got too close to the entrance. And I got it on video! If that bee sting is anything like an electric fence to him, he'll never get near the hive again!
    After 20 months I'm over a 20 hives and growing. See my videos! http://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8fVrmUsyYlRuASdX6UQk1g

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Creek County, OK
    Posts
    129

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Make sure you give them room to breathe when it gets really hot.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Santa Fe, TX, USA
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Phoenix42, where in Galveston County are you? I am in Santa Fe. A beekeeper friend of mine told me that hive beetles destroyed several of his bee hives in Alvin. Since then, I went out and bought a dozen beetle traps - the kind you put a little vegetable in, and insert between the frames. I only have one bee box, with 9 frames in it, and 2 beetle traps. If you want a few beetle traps, I can give you some. Just let me know.

    Thanks!
    Susan, Extremely New Beekeeper, Santa Fe, TX
    neverbeenstungneverbeenstungneverbeenstungneverbee nstung

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Location
    Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    688

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    92F is the preferred temp for the brood nest. If it's 105F and direct sun, the bees are stressed and not producing honey but rather their energy is consumed fanning, hauling water and bearding.

    Can't imagine not shading the hive from noon to evening direct sun and heat - trees, shade frame on posts, or large piece of plywwod, cardboard, styrofoam with air space above hive.

    In my local, we routinely insulate the hive when it's can get to -30 to -40F over the winter, use windbreaks, and give southern exposure.
    If you always do what you always did, you'll always get what you always got!

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Chickamauga, Walker County, Georgia
    Posts
    392

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    Our hives sit under full-shade (non-evergreen) trees in a grove in the center of an open pasture; a very pleasant place to be. Waterers are some distance away, also in shade. With daytime temperatures here over 100F, I've been very glad that the hives are not exposed to direct sunlight during mid-day. This winter, the leaves will be gone.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Houston, Texas, USA
    Posts
    460

    Default Re: Full sun in deep south?

    I am in the Clear Lake City area of Houston and keep mine in the shade. I read about a top bar hive that a beek near us that had some full comb collapse due to heat/melting. Take a look at The Fat Bee Man YouTube and his web site http://www.dixiebeesupply.com/Dixieb...t_Bee_Man.html . He uses boric acid (got it at Ace Hardware) in pieces of political signs sealed with Crisco and stapled to your bottom board near the back. It is organic but you do not want your bees moving (spill). Replace after 45 days. I'm putting mine in this weekend.
    I have traps, the reusable kind (Wabash) and have caught 15 SHB and occasionally see one, but they do not seem to be a big problem yet . I also put diatomaceous earth below the hive for ants and SHB (Home Depot garden area). It cuts them up like broken glass.
    Last edited by mmmooretx; 07-05-2012 at 07:37 PM. Reason: Traps
    Mike
    N5RWH - 9a

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