New-style slatted racks
In Ohio, I used slatted racks on some of my hives. While I wouldn't call it "necessary", I honestly feel they contributed to the hives I used them on - they did create a little dead space just under the frames (which assisted with insulation), and the way they tended to block some of the light coming in from the entrance did seem to encourage the queen to lay further down the frames. But, that was in Ohio.
Question #1: Has anybody personally found that slatted racks have any beneficial effects whatsoever in the region where I live now (Louisiana/Gulf Coast-ish)?
Slatted racks' slats traditionally run from side-to-side; across all the frames. However, I've noticed that some catalogs that sell slatted racks, sell versions whose slats run along the frames, from front to back (except of course the wide "shelf" across the entrance end, which is in the same place). In the catalogs, these types of slats say they allow all falling mites to fall all the way to the bottom board/screen/sticky board, whereas the old cross-slats created areas that caught some mites and allowed them to easily crawl back up into the hive. That sounds great; however, it seems to me that these length-wise slats would give up most of their insulative and light-blocking properties because they leave the entire inter-comb spaces completely open to the hive floor. In which case, what's the point? Mites fall all the way down without any slatted rack at all just as well.
Question #2: (independent of question #1) Are my suspicions about less insulative/light-blocking function justified, or do these racks still work fine in that way?
Beeless since 2012; coming back in 2014. Suffering from apicultural withdrawal!