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Author Topic: ventilation  (Read 2845 times)
binglis
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« on: January 07, 2008, 10:03:56 AM »

Hello all,
I have a question regarding "ventilation" and closing the hive for winter...
I have two hives, each consisting of two deeps.
In the upper deep, I have a ventilation hole, that I have left uncovered so far this winter. It is approximately 1and 1/4 " in diameter. i have black tarpaper surrounding the hive, and have insulated on top of the inner cover with fibreglass insulation (there is no ventilation hole in the inner cover...)

Is this what I should be doing? we have had one cold spell (-20 celsius) this winter, for two nights. I plugged the holes with 'wine cork' for those few nights, as I thought it would be too cold to leave them open. I have since removed the corks.
I live about 30 miles Northwest of Toronto, Ontario, Canada...FYI

All feedback is much appreciated...

Best Regrads,
binglis
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Cindi
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« Reply #1 on: January 07, 2008, 10:14:48 AM »

Binglis, you will hear more.  You must have an exit hole in the colony for moisture to escape, it sounds like you do, but where in the box is the hole located that you say you plugged up with the cork. If there is no slot in the front of the inner cover, I would leave this hole open.  Is this hole in the front of the box, the same side as the entrance?  Define a little more clearly for us.  Great day, Cindi
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binglis
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« Reply #2 on: January 07, 2008, 10:49:02 AM »

Hi Cindi,
The ventilation hole I have is in the front (and middle...) of the 'top' deep, in each of the hives.
As I have said, it is approximately one and one quarter inches in diameter. The bees use it in summer as an exit...
Let me know if you require more info...
Thanks for your response,
binglis
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Cindi
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« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2008, 09:23:32 AM »

Binglis, one and one quarter inch.  I would say that is the size of a toonie.  Personally, without a slot in the front of the inner cover, I would leave it open.  Moisture needs to escape from the hive somehow and if there is not an opening, the condensation from the bees consuming honey could drip back down on them and freeze them to death.  Hives require some kind of ventilation like that.

If you are worried about it being too cold, close this hole off by half the size, like say with duck tape or something like that, but leave some kind of opening for this condensation escape.  Hope this has helped, you may hear more advice.  Have a great, wonderful day, Cindi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2008, 11:47:43 PM »

Any hole below the top of the frames is going to allow moisture to collect on the underside of the top or inner cover.  For proper ventilation there should be a vent at the top edge of the super.  Use of an Imbrie shim and a screened bottom board will cure any ventilation problem you have.  Yes, even in Your cold winters I believe a screened bottom board can be used without problems, if a slatted rack is used between the bottom box and the bottom board the heat will be retained even if the screened bottom is left open.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #5 on: January 09, 2008, 06:31:02 AM »

A top entrance was worth doing some way or another.  Since you are in Ontario, I'm not the expert on your climate but I've lived in some pretty cold climates (Mitchell, NE and Laramie, WY) and never wrapped.
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« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2008, 11:50:42 AM »

The more I look at the Warre hive, the more I think that the one truly important thing it has going for it is: there is no top board. The roof is open beneath the gables for air to pass through. Between the roof and the boxes of comb is a water- and air-permeable (and water absorbing) insulating material such as a sawdust/straw mixture. There is no actual "vent" anywhere. The hive is open to raw atmosphere only at the entrance (bottom).

This solves a couple of problems quite nicely: Water is carried and/or held away from clustering bees by the insulating material; Airflow (and, therefore, temperature) can be easily regulated by the bees.

It would not be at all difficult to build a similar roof configuration for Lang, National or even KTB hives.
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« Reply #7 on: January 09, 2008, 07:11:30 PM »

I removed my teloscoping cover and found condensation in the shape of the slot in the inner cover. I have it positioned so that the slot in the side of the inner cover is to the front and vents the top bars. Why should I have the condensation on the telescoping cover?
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Jerrymac
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« Reply #8 on: January 09, 2008, 07:59:02 PM »

The telescoping cover is subjected to the outside air and is what cools down first. Then the warm moist air from inside the hive goes up through the hole in the inner cover and condensates right there above the hole
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« Reply #9 on: January 09, 2008, 09:50:53 PM »

I removed my teloscoping cover and found condensation in the shape of the slot in the inner cover. I have it positioned so that the slot in the side of the inner cover is to the front and vents the top bars. Why should I have the condensation on the telescoping cover?

I don't know the number of times I've opened a hive over the years and had the condensation on the underside of the inner or migratory top "rain" on the hive.  That's one of the primary reasons I went to top entrances--they allow the condensation to exit the hive because the entrance is higher than the top bars of the frames.  The upper side of the top entrance is actually the highest point in the hive--hence little, if any, condensation.
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« Reply #10 on: January 10, 2008, 07:01:43 AM »

>Why should I have the condensation on the telescoping cover?

Because the air outside is cold and the air inside is warm and moist.  It's the same reason you get condensation on your glass of ice water.

The problem isn't a little condensation.  The problem is when an ice dome builds up on the bottom of the lid and then on a moderately warm day, melts and then that night it gets cold again and the bees are still wet.
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Cindi
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« Reply #11 on: January 10, 2008, 09:43:30 AM »

Just doing some testing here.  Have a great day, CIndi
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There are strange things done in the midnight sun by the men who moil for gold.  The Arctic trails have their secret tales that would make your blood run cold.  The Northern Lights have seen queer sights, but the queerest they ever did see, what the night on the marge of Lake Lebarge, I cremated Sam McGee.  Robert Service
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« Reply #12 on: January 10, 2008, 11:51:49 AM »

The other advantage to leaving it open is that the bees can get out to fly in the winter if the bottom entrance gets clogged up with dead bees.  And get back to the cluster quicker when they do fly, because the cluster is typically nearer the top.

Rick
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Rick
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« Reply #13 on: January 10, 2008, 07:48:41 PM »

I have the honey run apiaries inner cover, and so far, my hives have been doing great with it. It comes with a nice block of styrofoam to insulate the top, above the hole, and a circle cut out so that a feeder can be put in during the spring while insulating the rest of the cover. Seems to provide great ventilation in the summer, when they need it, too.
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misfyredOhio
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« Reply #14 on: January 10, 2008, 10:13:57 PM »

Could someone direct me to a picture of an Imbrie shim? I can't visualize it from the descriptions/measurements given online.
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misfyredOhio
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« Reply #15 on: January 10, 2008, 10:16:10 PM »

>Why should I have the condensation on the telescoping cover?
The problem is when an ice dome builds up on the bottom of the lid and then on a moderately warm day, melts and then that night it gets cold again and the bees are still wet.


I am now convinced this is what killed my first (and only) hive of bees this year.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #16 on: January 11, 2008, 06:40:39 AM »

>Could someone direct me to a picture of an Imbrie shim? I can't visualize it from the descriptions/measurements given online.

http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/products.asp?pcode=211
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misfyredOhio
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« Reply #17 on: January 12, 2008, 04:16:21 PM »

Thank you for directing me to a picture. I understand now.
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misfyredOhio
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« Reply #18 on: January 12, 2008, 04:49:46 PM »

I was looking for that Honey Run inner cover mentioned in this thread. Is that the same as the "all season inner cover" that they sell?all season inner cover Anyone else have experience with these?
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rdy-b
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« Reply #19 on: January 12, 2008, 04:50:10 PM »

http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/products.asp?pcode=211
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twb
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« Reply #20 on: January 12, 2008, 08:42:00 PM »

So, can an Imirie shim or similar item be placed on the brood boxes with honey supers over it, or does this create too large of a space between top brood box and honey super?  If this is OK would the bees use the shim notch entrance for their "honey" loads?
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Brian D. Bray
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« Reply #21 on: January 12, 2008, 10:16:01 PM »

So, can an Imirie shim or similar item be placed on the brood boxes with honey supers over it, or does this create too large of a space between top brood box and honey super?

It's possible that it can result in burr comb.

Quote
  If this is OK would the bees use the shim notch entrance for their "honey" loads?

Yes, at least some of them will.
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« Reply #22 on: January 12, 2008, 11:18:02 PM »

TWB,

Not sure why you'd want to place an Imirie shim there; you'd be better served to place a slatted rack there (added space, probable function as a non-harmful queen excluder, etc) and use a top entrance.
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twb
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« Reply #23 on: January 13, 2008, 10:08:10 AM »

TWB,

Not sure why you'd want to place an Imirie shim there; you'd be better served to place a slatted rack there (added space, probable function as a non-harmful queen excluder, etc) and use a top entrance.

I guess I was thinking this would eliminate the need to drill holes in my brood boxes if it works.
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annette
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« Reply #24 on: January 13, 2008, 01:31:58 PM »

I was looking for that Honey Run inner cover mentioned in this thread. Is that the same as the "all season inner cover" that they sell?all season inner cover Anyone else have experience with these?


Same cover and I have them on both of my hives. I truly love them, so far, and the bees never beard in front of the hive, like they did the first year.  It provides such nice ventilation for them in the summer. Here it gets into the 100's for days on end.  It just all makes sense to me and now for the winter it really seems wonderful as well. I like the upper ventilation notch and the insulation on top to keep the hive warm.

I recommend these covers.

Annette
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