Beesource Beekeeping Forums banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts
D

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,

1. It's likely that my bees will have a large amount of uncapped honey in the top super (of 3 mediums). I am feeding them, but it is unusually cold for this time of year and they are not very active.

Should I leave it or remove it?

2. I have read that it is not necessary to cover the screened bottom boards. I'm not sure what climate those remarks came from. It can get extremely cold for extended periods of time in the winter here. I want to cover the screens, but I am concerned about moisture. Any thoughts or ideas?

Thank you,

Doug
 

·
Vendor
Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
Joined
·
54,108 Posts
>1. It's likely that my bees will have a large amount of uncapped honey in the top super (of 3 mediums). I am feeding them, but it is unusually cold for this time of year and they are not very active.
Should I leave it or remove it?

If it's mostly full I'd leave it. If it's mostly empty I'd pull it. I worry about bees moving up into a mostly empty super in the winter and starving.

>2. I have read that it is not necessary to cover the screened bottom boards. I'm not sure what climate those remarks came from. It can get extremely cold for extended periods of time in the winter here. I want to cover the screens, but I am concerned about moisture. Any thoughts or ideas?

I have not tried it, but it goes against the grain. A lot of people wrap the hives to seal them up and insulate them better and then you leave a gaping hole in the bottom.

The argument for leaving them open is that they need ventialtion. I always try to provide that and a top entrance because I want to avoid condensation. I'm not sure how leaving the bottom open is going to eliminate the condensation and if I have an upper entrance I'm not sure how much of a draft that will make with the bottom open. I think I will try some both ways this winter, but I will probably close most of them.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,964 Posts
I know at least 1 guy who leaves all the bottoms open in upper NY satate. (500 Hives)
I leave mine open all summer and will leave 1/2 of the open this winter. The theory is: Dampness kills, not temperature.

Dick Marron
 

·
Vendor
Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
Joined
·
54,108 Posts
Some of mine are just inner covers with the groove in them, with the groove down. Some are DE Ventilation kits from http://www.beeworks.com/uspage1.asp with the toggle open. Some are homemade inner covers with a toggle cut in them like the DE ones. The toggle looks similar to the ones on the double screen board plan on this site. http://www.beesource.com/plans/scrnbrd.pdf I used to drill holes in the boxes for a top entrance but I got tired of having to find something to plug the hole when I didn't want an entrance there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
970 Posts
Hi Doug,

How much honey is in your hive (weight)? If the super is just uncapped yet has honey/ syrup I'd leave it. If mostly empty I'd pull it. As for sbb's there are many beekeepers in NY that leave them open. But it is important to have a strong hive going into winter. If the cluster is small maybe better to close up. I use an upper entrance that lets out moisture. Some moisture is good in the winter as it provides water, Just too much is bad.

MB, I have decided to close the bottom entrances up more than usual this year. They usualy get covered in snow anyways. But I suspect the wind blowing in is more of a problem before the snow gets deep enough then moisture.
 
D

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
When you use an upper entrance, does it have a "landing strip"?
 

·
Vendor
Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
Joined
·
54,108 Posts
When I drilled holes in the top box it was often in the summer and lot of traffic would be going in and out, so I put a 2 x 2 under the hole. In the winter I think it's irelevant. There isn't enough traffic to matter.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,340 Posts
>>Dampness kills, not temperature.

True, but a cold wind whistling up into the bee cluster is also deadly
Kind of like going outside in a cold windy day with a jacket on, but no pants!!

Ian

[This message has been edited by Ian (edited October 09, 2003).]
 
D

·
Guest
Joined
·
0 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Hi everybody,

I'd really like to thank you all for your advise and input.

Michael, the beeworks site was a very interesting read. He has made some interesting improvements to Langstroth hives. It looks like he modified his inner cover to provide the top entrance. What, if anything, keeps the wind from whipping through your hives with an opening like that?

I like the top "vent box." Does it work? How about in the winter?

Ian, the "no pants" analogy sure puts that in a different light!

Thanks,

Doug
 

·
Vendor
Local feral survivors in eight frame medium boxes.
Joined
·
54,108 Posts
>Michael, the beeworks site was a very interesting read. He has made some interesting improvements to Langstroth hives.

Yes he has.

>It looks like he modified his inner cover to provide the top entrance.

Yes it does.

>What, if anything, keeps the wind from whipping through your hives with an opening like that?

You reduce the entrance on the bottom. You flip the vent box on the top and only two holes are open in the cover. It's not a breeze, just a steady flow of moisture out the top. The inventor is in Ontario.

>I like the top "vent box." Does it work? How about in the winter?

The DE version has two parts on top. The lid has two vent holes and the vent box has two on each side. When the weather is cold you flip the vent box upside down and the holes in it are covered by the overhang on the lid.

I somtimes make my own with just two or four holes in a box and put a brick on some of the holes in the inner cover for the winter.(the DE version has three holes and that's what mine usually have too).
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top