so i live near tampa fl and it is the time of year where it get hot a humid. i have noticed my bees are beading around the hive, it isnt a population issue it is a weather one. would screen bottom board help?
Yes, as well as a slatted rack in the heat. Lots of beekeepers say the the slatted rack is obsolete with IPM screened bottom boards, but in extreme heat, both are perfectly acceptable, and probably a better setup, especially as swarm season approaches.
Being in Tampa, you are probably also interested in setting up for hurricane season. I'm not from hurricane country, but I would set bees up on a high ground spot, even if I had to make one with a tractor. I would hollow out a depression in the top well below the wind, possibly even building a good, strong deck over them, possibly even concrete. I'd build it with sufficient drain pipes to keep water down below 2 pallets. I'd probably build a ramp down to it for loading them onto the truck. Best of luck!
i have it on high ground that will not flood unless we get a 12 ft tidal wave at which point having a bee hive is pointless because my house will be gone as well LOL. that is what i was thinking, makes the ventilation better.
I've been running Open Mesh Floors (SBB's in the US) for many years now, but have only run slatted racks over the Open Mesh Floors (all year round, btw) for a period of two years. Although it's probably a tad early to be drawing hard conclusions, on the strength of just two hives with this configuration, it's beginning to look like a winning combination.
Although we don't have the weather of either Florida or California, we can get a few blisteringly hot days during summer when bearding then occurs. Some people consider such bearding to be 'normal' - but I don't. My view is that bees should be living and working inside the hive as far as possible, and not be hanging around outside of it, and that bearding is an outward indication of poor hive design. In practice I've found that with extra-deep frames a good sized space (3-4") below them is all that's required to prevent bearding, with no need for a slatted rack - but with standard-sized frames a rack becomes essential to prevent creative comb-building within that space - hence the slatted-rack trials.
As an unexpected bonus, I was to discover during the first examination of this season that the bees have been keeping the slatted-rack/OMF assemblies as clean as the proverbial whistle. Hence one happy beekeeper.
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