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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    23

    Default temperature and humidity data to help reduce stress, where to find guidelines?

    I'm starting two hives this spring in the banana belt of Michigan (the southernmost edge, right along indiana).

    Obviously, I'm interested in staying treatment free.
    .
    I've read the usual books and thousands of posts in various forums. Typical newbie...

    I'll be doing one Langstroth using all 8-frame mediums and letting the bees build all their own wax in the hopes of reducing mite problems, etc with smaller bees. The second hive will be a 4' Kenyan top bar using one inch thick plywood to give them a bit more insulation and temperature stability.

    I have two bee packages on order from Wolf Creek, so hybrid/mutt/small cell bees.

    Now that you have the general picture, here are the questions.

    1. One hears various things about moisture control vs ventilation vs condensation, the importance of temperature in the brood nest and/or the hive in spring/summer/fall/winter. Use insulation or don't insulate. I haven't run across much data about what hive temperatures should be. Same thing for humidity levels. So, I'm handy with collecting data and measuring things, but would like some basic grounding in what, if anything, I should be shooting for in terms of temps and humidity in the 4 seasons in my area. If I can reduce the stress on the bees in this way, they will have a little more energy to fight other problems. I recognize that there will be varying opinions, and perhaps no authoritative single source, but I really haven't seen anything convincing. Maybe I'm not looking in the right place.

    2. I am in the middle of corn and soybean country. How much do I have to worry about pesticides and herbicides and fungicides and neonicotinoids, etc, killing my bees despite my best efforts? Any way to reduce the risks?

    Thanks in advance,

    troy

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    Rader, Greene County, Tennessee, USA
    Posts
    5,935

    Default Re: temperature and humidity data to help reduce stress, where to find guidelines?

    Welcome to Beesource!

    Here's info on hive temperature:
    http://files.uniteddiversity.com/Bee...emperature.pdf
    Look for the page numbered 186 for a summary table. The entire document is only 8 pages or so.
    ultracrepidarian >> noting or pertaining to a person who criticizes, judges, or gives advice outside of his expertise

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: temperature and humidity data to help reduce stress, where to find guidelines?

    Excellent, good start.

    troy

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2002
    Location
    Denver, Colorado
    Posts
    5,078

    Default Re: temperature and humidity data to help reduce stress, where to find guidelines?

    I'll give you this much: #1 is a waste of time. #2 you can't do much about. You'll have your hands full with real beekeeping without worrying about things you can't control, so don't.
    Solomon Parker, Parker Farms, ParkerFarms.biz
    11 Years Treatment-Free, ~25 Colony Baseline

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    Reno, NV
    Posts
    2,923

    Default Re: temperature and humidity data to help reduce stress, where to find guidelines?

    1. As I understand it the bees manage both already.
    2. as often as the neighbors use them. and it is unlikely you can change their minds.

    Can you reduce the effort needed on the bees part to manage temperature and humidity of the interior of the hive. I think you can. I also think it would be an advantage in certain specific situations. But not for general beekeeping.

    Everyone does what they do for their reasons though. So if fiddling with the humidity of a hive is what makes your clock tick. so be it. For some reason I have the numbers 90 degrees and 50% humidity rolling around in my head. Someone the other day said 80 to 90% humidity will prevent mites from reproducing.
    Stand for what you believe, even if you stand alone.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    michigan
    Posts
    23

    Default Re: temperature and humidity data to help reduce stress, where to find guidelines?

    I appreciate the input Sol, well really, all the input.

    If temperature and humidity control is a waste of time, why do many northern beeks wrap their hives every winter??

    Finest regards,

    troy

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