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Author Topic: SBB question  (Read 2546 times)
11nick
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« on: August 19, 2011, 09:41:39 PM »

want to make sure I'm understanding it...
Screened bottom boards supposedly have several benefits, one of which is increased ventilation.  If you put a SBB in, then put a tray or full sticky board in it, aren't you blocking the majority of the screen and negating any potential gain in ventilation?
Just wondering.  Never saw one.
Thanks
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ccar2000
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« Reply #1 on: August 19, 2011, 10:05:25 PM »

I agree with you logic. Also you need some kind of upper ventilation in order to create airflow. A box with one end open does not allow the rising heat to escape.
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11nick
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« Reply #2 on: August 19, 2011, 10:14:30 PM »

I've not yet met an older generation bee keeper who uses them.  I'm sure they are out there, but I just haven't met one yet.  But every experienced bee keeper will tell you that there is a lot of "junk" being sold today just to take advantage of less experienced beeks who think they "need" all the new widgets to be successful.
I'm trying to see the value in SBB. 
Thanks again 
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ccar2000
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« Reply #3 on: August 19, 2011, 10:20:58 PM »

Yup, I do not use the SBBs either. I do use a ventilated inner cover with a migratory cover in the summer. Seems to work for my climate/bees. I also leave my entrance reduced to about half of the hive front all year. I like the screened inner cover for one reason is that I can look in to the hive without using the smoker.
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annette
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« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2011, 10:40:06 PM »

I use all SBB on my hives and keep them open all year round. I do for ventilation, but mostly I hate the thought of the bees cleaning themselves of the varroa mites and have the mites climb back up onto the bees. With the SBB, the varroa fall through the screen and cannot get back up onto the bees.

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11nick
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« Reply #5 on: August 19, 2011, 10:51:12 PM »

I don't want to hijack my own thread.... I still want to hear more on SBB's....
But since you mention ventilated inner cover, I had an older beek tell me that bees might cover the vented inner covers with propolis.  Sounds like you don't have that experience.
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annette
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« Reply #6 on: August 19, 2011, 11:00:53 PM »

I have the ventilated inner covers as well from Honey Run Apiaries. Sometimes the bees like to propolize the inner hole, and no big deal. I usually scrap some of the propolis away to vent the heat from the hive.
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ccar2000
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« Reply #7 on: August 19, 2011, 11:14:19 PM »

This is the ventilated inner cover I use.
http://www.brushymountainbeefarm.com/10-frame-Ventilated-Inner-Cover-Moving-Screen/productinfo/373/
I have not had any problems with propolising. On the long edge of the cover there is a small +- 3/8" reveal that I point upwards against the migratory cover. It keeps out any stray bees and allows good ventilation on the 100* days we have here in the High Desert. As soon as the nights start getting cold I go back to the traditional inner cover and telescoping outer. And, hey, its your thread Smiley
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BlueBee
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« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2011, 02:38:20 AM »

My bees will usually completely block an inner cover screen unless the whole cover is a screen.  I guess they figure, why bother if the whole thing is open! 

I agree with ccar, I like the full screened inner covers.  You can easily peak in on the bees.  That is really nice in a nuc.  Not enough bees in a nuc to propolize it over either. 

I do use screened BBs, but the commercial guys I’m aware of around me do not.  I use them for mites checks and ventilation for top entrance hives.
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Poppi
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« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2011, 05:15:15 PM »

SBB's are used for IPM and ventilation both...  you only use the sticky board to do the count and it is removed otherwise.  I use a screened inner cover as well but it is "wire screen" not 8th inch hardware cloth and if the bees put propolis on it, I remove it.  I don't have SHB's but they are very common here and I was told to use screen because hardware cloth allows the beetles to get away from the bees...  Some of the beetle traps under the SBB are in place all the time and then I would agree it may block some ventilation.  I don't think it is a problem though...  there is still better ventilation than with a solid bottom board.  And as it has been said, I want the stuff falling out of the hive not to the bottom board and climbing back in...
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sc-bee
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« Reply #10 on: August 20, 2011, 07:07:39 PM »

The main concept for the SBB is IPM for varroa. The "P" stands for pest. Will the screen bottom help with ventilation, sure it will, so will cracking the top on the hive. So, do you believe they help with pest. If not don't buy them and crack your top for ventilation Wink
Also the sticky board is only inserted @ count time.
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John 3:16
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« Reply #11 on: August 20, 2011, 07:45:14 PM »

Here is what I am doing for my next backyard hive.  It is still under construction, but as you can see, I like a little daylight under my hives.  Aids in ventilation, helps me, helps the bees.

Bottom board <$2.00 1x4 @ Home Depot
Stand <$3.00 Yellow wood 2x4 @ Home Depot
#8 screen $2.50 linear foot 36 inches wide
Garage sale Brownie pan $0.50

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Poppi
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« Reply #12 on: August 20, 2011, 08:25:50 PM »

Sundog...   I like it!  Was thinking along the same lines but I like my hives up on concrete block...  for moisture reasons..  just need to find a pan the right size.  I have found plastic storage bins that the covers are very close...    thinking more for SHB and oil in the pan but you could make your own sticky board the size you need to rest on top of the pan when a varroa count is needed...
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Katharina
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« Reply #13 on: August 21, 2011, 03:37:52 PM »

They tell you everywhere that proper ventilation will prevent a lot of issues within the hive.  I do use screened boards to have the ventilation, in addition to the ventilation near the top to have the chimney effect.  My bees are doing great.  You can either close it off in winter, and some have drawers to do so or you can slide under a piece of thin plywood to take care of it yourself.  I like the ones I have.
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11nick
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« Reply #14 on: August 21, 2011, 10:24:40 PM »

I'm just researching all my options so I make educated purchases in the spring when I buy hives.  I feel dumb asking questions that are so basic to experienced beekeepers.  So I'm sorry if I'm dragging you down to the basics!

I live in Pennsylvania.  Winters can get down to zero or below, but rarely.  I read that some people use their SBB's all winter long.  I do understand the concept of ventilating the hive in winter to prevent condensation, but wouldn't a fully open SBB expose the cluster to a little too much cold air and freeze them out? 

Thanks!
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sc-bee
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« Reply #15 on: August 22, 2011, 01:12:44 AM »

I am going to raise some eyebrows on this one but rolleyes Bees don't freeze they starve! If they are clustered because of the cold where they can not reach the food source they then starve.
Of course i do not have that problem in SC.
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BlueBee
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« Reply #16 on: August 22, 2011, 01:26:25 AM »

There are some beeks on here that have left the bottom screen open in the winter.  I would not do it, but everybody does things a little differently.  A wood hive has almost no insulation value and hence you could say that removing the bottom of something with no insulation value should have little effect.  That is probably true, but I would be concerned about wind blowing in through an open bottom and pulling out what little heat the bees are making.  A wood hive is a poor insulator, but at least it can keep the wind off the bees.

A cold bee is a dead bee; rather it starved or froze is academic in my book  grin
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derekm
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« Reply #17 on: August 22, 2011, 05:41:14 AM »

There are some beeks on here that have left the bottom screen open in the winter.  I would not do it, but everybody does things a little differently.  A wood hive has almost no insulation value and hence you could say that removing the bottom of something with no insulation value should have little effect.  That is probably true, but I would be concerned about wind blowing in through an open bottom and pulling out what little heat the bees are making.  A wood hive is a poor insulator, but at least it can keep the wind off the bees.

A cold bee is a dead bee; rather it starved or froze is academic in my book  grin
Most forms of insulation are "still air" i.e. a way of stopping the air from moving e.g. stryrofoam rockwool .  If you can keep the air under hive from moving, the hive is insulated.
Heres a way to do it box in the sides  to form a tube say 12 to 15" high and then place another open mesh  at the bottom and a another  half way up  The top mesh is bee proof size  the the bottom 2 meshes mouse proof size.   ventilation and insulation.
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If they increased energy bill for your home by a factor of 4.5 would you consider that cruel? If so why are you doing that to your bees?
sc-bee
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« Reply #18 on: August 22, 2011, 08:34:02 AM »

>A cold bee is a dead bee; rather it starved or froze is academic in my book  grin


That is correct, a cold bee is a dead bee--- that is why bees cluster grin But I do understand bees in the north may need insulation to be able to break cluster or move and feed where they will not starve.

Semantics right--- dead is dead Wink
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mushmushi
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« Reply #19 on: August 22, 2011, 08:41:01 AM »


I use SBBs because I treat with formic acid by putting it underneath the SBB (it then vaporizes).

Without a SBB, I would have to find another way to treat with formic acid (pads, etc).

Before this Winter, I'll see if I can put a heater in there for a weaker colonies to boost them up especially in Spring.

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