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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Contra Costa, El Sobrante, CA

    Lightbulb TBH in Northern California

    Hello Everyone,

    I just bought a used TBH that consists of the main box with sloped sides and the top bars. I have a few questions about it and am hoping for suggestions based on your expertise in a California-like coastal environment. It does get hot here (90's) for a few days in the summer, but is generally mild.

    • The bottom is a solid board. I was not going to open it up for a screened bottom for ventilation or mites.
    • I want to ventilate via holes in the hive. I am thinking of one on the back side, three entry holes on the front side and one up high on an end for moisture control. Is this enough? I would use corks to close them off as needed.
    • Has anyone put in a screened tray on the solid bottom board that is lined with a sticky paper for mites?
    • What are the pros and cons of side entrances or end entrances?
    • Aside from the asthetic value of a peaked roof, are there advantages over just using a flat board?
    • Does anyone use burlap as a cover for the top bars? Does it make a difference? Help with wicking moisture away?

    Thanks for your insights!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Concord, CA

    Default Re: TBH in Northern California

    I can't give you any specific TBH advice, But there are several people who keep TBH in alameda, & CC county.
    The burlap would work fine in the summer, but not in the rainy season.
    I know an entrance at the end of the hive promotes brood rearing at that end, & honey storage in the rear. center entrances screw that up.
    Some people use screened bottom boards, some do not.

    We don't own a TBH, so I'm just sharing info I've heard from others.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Moyock, NC, USA

    Default Re: TBH in Northern California

    I would suggest that your bottom board remain inetrchangeable. This way as the seasons/temp changes, so can you.

    As for ventilation, there are two schools of thought..some want to dry the honey by ventilation assisted evaporation, other by condensing the air in the hive thus lowering humidity in the hive like that. That would be YOUR peragative. I am no expert but my observations lead me to the latter. My bees propolis the top bars together seemingly trying to stop the upward ventilation.They do this on both of my two totally different shaped hives.

    The sticky paper under the hive would definitely help if you have mites.. You might not have them at all. I don't. It would tell you though if you did have them.

    I have entrances on each end. But if you have a little hole somewhere they will find it. One of my hives has 1" holes and I see bees crawling out of a 1/4" crack at the bottom, talk about some non-conformists.

    The roof in my opinion when peaked offers more dead air space, which means more stable temp in the hive.

    The burlap would help wick moisture from the hive. I don't use it though.

    I am on the opposite coast and it is 90+ here a lot. Bees like it at 92 approximately inside the hive so you'll be good.

    When are you getting your bees?

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