Can bees get too hot in the hive?

Discussion in 'General Beekeeping' started by srvfantexasflood, Jun 26, 2009.

  1. srvfantexasflood

    srvfantexasflood New Member

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    You can tell that I am new by my questions. I was wondering if it was natural, on hot days, for the bees to gather out on the bottom board instead of going inside the hive. Some days the bottom board and brood boxes are covered with bees. My hive is located in dappled shade throughout the day, but it has been really hot and humid this summer. I believe I heard someone say to move the top brood box a little to let some air in the back. Is this true? Wouldn't that allow rain to enter and cause the wood to rot?
     
  2. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    When bees need to regulate the temperature, they will fan air throughout the colony, bees facing in towards the entrance fanning their wings, on the other side more bees facing outwards, also fanning their wings, drawing air out of the hive. Even more bees doing the same thing inside the colony completing a circulation of drawing air into the hive transporting it up and throughout the whole colony, and then drawing it out of the hive. They will also bring in water and disperse inside the hive enhancing the cooling effect. The short answer--yeah a hive can get too hot, but the bees have a fix as described, as for clustering on the front of the hive, think if you provide additional space ( a super ) for the bees to spread out on inside the hive, outside clustering will be minimized. Bees need to be busy, working on something to be content why not have them comb building, and nectar storage, bearing in mind that nectar needs to be spread out to cure properly, to condense into honey. :D One more thing, if you havn't already done so, should consider giving the bees a source of fresh water, or they will try to raid your neighbors bird baths, and pools :shock: . Remember to place floats in the water to avoid drowning bees :D .
     

  3. Iddee

    Iddee New Member

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    All the above being true, it will only minimize the bearding, not do away with it. It is a natural thing for them to reduce body heat inside by going outside and congregating on the front. It is nothing to worry about and is a good indicator of hive strength. Also, make sure they have empty space. Add a box if needed. Too crowded and they may swarm to reduce numbers.
     
  4. srvfantexasflood

    srvfantexasflood New Member

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    Thank you for the prompt replies. I never heard anyone talk about this behavior before. I added the first super and queen excluder on 6/22. They had 9 of the ten frames filled in the second brood chamber. I will be checking this weekend to make sure they are moving up into the super and building comb. Water is abundant as the hive is located within a few hundred feet of a pond.
     
  5. barry42001

    barry42001 New Member

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    if you are using drawn comb the bees will readily clean and use the super, if foundation, they will be a bit slower, but still use them, remember that when storing nectar, they actually spread the incomming nectar out over a fairly large area of comb to accelerate the evaporation process, this causes that unique odor or aroma, that so indicates they are working a floral source, wonderful smell of whatever is in bloom. but they need to make the combs and spread it out they will use even 1/4 drawn cells and continue to draw the cell the rest of the cell height as they go. This process also generates lots of hot humid air consider using a upper enterance I shim the inner cover up others drill a hole in the upper half of super to make life easier for the bees, I also have staggered the supers to create ventilation and upper entrances this is ONLY A OPTION WITH REALLY STRONG COLONIES. Just Ideas, try them all use what works for you .