I am researching how to keep bees in Arizona (Phoenix area) and need a few questions answered before I start:
1) Hive Configuration - I am considering using only medium hive bodies and suppers as this would standardize my equipment and make frame exchanges easier between boxes. Is there any advice you might give or why this would be a bad idea and should stick with the standard deeps for the brood chambers?
2) Heat Considerations - temps can be too hot. Do you have any advice on how to keep hives cool? Is this even a concern? I know bees will regulate their hive temp and giving them access to a reliable source of fresh water will be critical. I plan to keep my hives mostly shaded during the day but will this be a concern in the winter months? Can you recommend package/nuk breeders who have developed a good bee line for very warm temps?
3) Africanized Bee Concerns - I know we have this "problem" in Arizona. Any advice on how to keep your hive dosile? If a hive does turn too aggressive, is re-queening a viable option to turn it back again? I am very concerned about this as I plan to keep a couple of hives on my property in a sub-division with lots of neighbors. I do not want an aggressive hive that has the potential to seriously harm or injure anyone or their pets.
Any advice you can give would be very helpful. Thank you!!!