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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Here's a picture of my hives today with temps 90F+

Is this amount of bearding significant?

4" entrance openingss on both, and a 1 inch ventilation hole on the back of the 3rd deeps. Should I consider propping the upper lids open a smidge for better ventilation?



 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·




Inserted small shims to raise the back of the lids. Hopefully this well help them cool down a bit.

The gap is large enough to let air escape, but not the bees.
 

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That's fine wags, you have enough ventilation. They need airflow in the hive for temperature and humidity control so they need space between the combs for fanning air around. Also the space is needed for air flow to dry out and cure nectar. The bees hang out, but in the morning they are all back inside. If they are still not inside by morning, then they might need more space or ventilation, or they might be going to swarm. That does not look to me like swarm beards, looks rather normal to me.
 

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Bearding, typically, is a normal thing. All of those bees don't need to be inside the hive. When the nectar flow ebbs or ends there are a load of foragers without work. They don't have any duties inside the hive, so rather than needlessly adding their biological heat to the nest, they stay outside. It doesn't need 'fixing'.
 

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Is that water or syrup in your feeders?
 

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Does beading then indicate a dearth is on?
 

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Syrup in the feeders. I keep a pan stocked with water in front of the hives. I filled it with small twigs as to not drown the bees.
 

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To me bearding indicates the temp in the hive is exactly where they want it. Too cool they would be covering brood. Too hot they would need to be fanning. If you give them more ventilation they will go back inside and plug it with bees.
 

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Does beading then indicate a dearth is on?
Not necessarily. Surely, once a dearth is on, temps are high and there are many unemployed foragers there'll be more bearding. At the same time, sometimes, depending on what might be blooming, nectar may only available for part of the day. In those cases....the foragers only have part time jobs and will beard the rest of the time.
 
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