Results 1 to 17 of 17
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Doubts about screened bottom boards

    I have what is still my only hive on a SBB. I've noticed a bunch of bees often cluster under the hive, on the screen. My assumption, although I can't be sure, is that this happens when the bees are out orienting and somehow go for the screen instead of the real hive entrance and get stuck there, trying to get past the screen instead of looking for another entrance as they can see/smell the rest of the hive through the screen. I've even seen a dead bee half-way through the screen. She must have gotten half her body through and then died there, stuck.

    Does anyone have any good resources about the pros/cons of SBBs? I've decided to be treatment free and foundationless if that's an important variable. I've also mostly decided to only use the (portuguese) medium sized 10 frame boxes and need to decide when I need to buy more equipment to do splits and house swarms if I should pick up SBBs or the (cheaper) solid bottoms.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,344

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    So do a search on the forum this subject has been beaten to death. But, I vote to dump them. Top right hand corner is a search bar put in "screen bottom" and hit enter. Read some of those results.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    I did exactly that before posting. I was just hoping for something more than a thread about it. I checked Michael Bush's website but he didn't have a page about it.

    I was also wondering specifically about the clustering at the screen behavior. Has anyone else observed that? What do you make of it.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,344

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    Yes, I had seen those. And if that's all there is to the discussion about SBBs no one seems to know with any confidence if they're a positive or negative.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 09-23-2012 at 02:44 PM. Reason: UNQuote

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
    Posts
    965

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    Given the fact that there is no clear consensus that sbb are an advantage and that they cost about three times as much as a solid one, I don't use them.

    My hives are chemical treatment free as well. and I have had no varroa issues.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Issaquah,WA,USA
    Posts
    2,344

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    Well since there is no evidence that there is a positive effect and they cost way more to make then a solid board then I think you ditch the SBB or don't add new ones. If you are using them and they work for you and you don't loose colonies then you are doing something right.

    It is all about keeping your bee's healthy all year and productive and alive through the winter. Everyone does it differently. I dont use them anymore. I thought they were the way to go early on and they were a waste of time and money. You might find it different and prove me wrong. Hate when that happens though.

    Anyway. Maybe someone will post a better answer.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Santa Rosa County, Florida
    Posts
    397

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    I don't really have a dog in this fight,I use both.I do have one big positive though.When robbing starts,you can close the sbb hive down to literally one bee size entrance and they can still ventilate the hive properly.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Kaysville, Utah, USA
    Posts
    384

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    The only time I've seen bees clustering on my SBB was after I closed the hive up due to robbing. The workers that got locked out all went to the SBB. There aren't any there now, and haven't been for some time.

    While the hive was closed the SBB gave me some confidence that they wouldn't overheat. My bees seem to like it OK.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Westchester NY
    Posts
    238

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    Someone just posted about this like two days ago and I had a huge thread with over 5000 views about this--Summary--They are good in hot places ie the South and everywhere else as a mite counting tool, but otherwise they are way overrated
    http://www.peekskillnurseries.com
    Specialists in Ground Cover plants since 1937. Talk to me about ground-covers!

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Tucson, Arizona, USA
    Posts
    5,325

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    For me, it's the opposite, they're much cheaper to make from a few cheap pieces of wood (glued and stapled together) and a piece of #8 hardware cloth stapled to the bottom.

    I use mine without any bottom entrance, they are literally Screened Bottom Boards, not Screened Bottom Board Entrances. All actual entrances are between supers and/or between the top super and cover. With a SBB I can close all my usual entrances (for example, during transport or to reduce robbing), and have no worries about sufficient ventilation.
    48 years - 50 hives - TF
    Joseph Clemens -- Website Under Constructioni

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    Quote Originally Posted by Splatt View Post
    The only time I've seen bees clustering on my SBB was after I closed the hive up due to robbing. The workers that got locked out all went to the SBB. There aren't any there now, and haven't been for some time.

    While the hive was closed the SBB gave me some confidence that they wouldn't overheat. My bees seem to like it OK.
    Come to think of it I've had this more when I had the entranced further reduced. I have it at a larger opening now but since they prefer to only use one side of the entrance I suppose it could be that that's causing a traffic jam and sending a bunch to the SBB. Next time I see this happening I'll try totally opening the entrance and see if that makes a difference.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Porto, Portugal
    Posts
    122

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    Quote Originally Posted by xcugat View Post
    Someone just posted about this like two days ago and I had a huge thread with over 5000 views about this--Summary--They are good in hot places ie the South and everywhere else as a mite counting tool, but otherwise they are way overrated
    I had seen threads about it but they seemed to be mostly anecdotes with no clear consensus. Are SBBs a recent thing or have they been used for long? As it stands I'll probably not bother buying any more as they're more expensive and I can't find any really compelling advantage to them.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Alachua County, FL, USA
    Posts
    6,873

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    It could be basic bee biology. The bees took the shortest or easiest route to the hive smell. If you properly restrict access to the underside, how will they get into trouble. It is as simple as a 16 by two inch board on my hives.
    http://americasbeekeeper.org/September2009%20006.jpg
    americasbeekeeper.com
    beekeeper@americasbeekeeper.com

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Mount Sterling, KY. USA
    Posts
    110

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    I use SBB 's and so far have no complaints. All of mine a slide in/out tray, which would prevent the problem you are having. I keep vegetable oil in the tray which aids in capturing SHB's and Varroa. They also keep the ants attention . They tend to hang around the tray instead of migrating up into the hives. I haven't had any problems yet. I will add that this is my first year at this, and I have no experience with SBB's

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Macoupin,Illinois,USA
    Posts
    355

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    i have both,i have seen exactly what u talk of with bees on the btm,and i have done my own test with ventilation and varroa,and i will use only solid btm's from now on.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Kaysville, Utah, USA
    Posts
    384

    Default Re: Doubts about screened bottom boards

    If you think about the places bees find to live (tree trunk, wall, under the shed), none of them have SBBs and the ventilation isn't nearly as free-flowing as we sometimes make it, yet they do well.

    I'm actually putting together a second hive and will use a home made solid bottom board with it. Partly because it was cheap to make it, partly because I want to see what happens.
    Don't provoke a hive full of angry bees.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Ads