Winter insulation?

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BeeJayBee 

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Winter to summer; having made a PIR jacket for three wooden hives. Should I leave the insulation on all year? And what about supers? Can I leave these I insulated. Might be a very impressive recticel box ;)
I've seen some hives wearing their winter-sized (i.e. to cover broodbox) reticel-type jackets in the summer, but the jacket only covered the supers. It meant that the honey production area was well protected, which may have helped a bit.

It would be interesting to know what you think, Derek ... over to you :)
 

derekm 

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I've seen some hives wearing their winter-sized (i.e. to cover broodbox) reticel-type jackets in the summer, but the jacket only covered the supers. It meant that the honey production area was well protected, which may have helped a bit.

It would be interesting to know what you think, Derek ... over to you :)
Best to just think of them as 21st century WBC with nice light lifts,
as regards jacket and no trousers it helps, but not best thermal performance.

I will have to write a book on PIR hives construction and thermal performance some day.
 

charlievictorbravo 

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I will have to write a book on PIR hives construction and thermal performance some day.
We're all waiting for it but you keep saying that you're waiting for your academic paper to be published - excuses, excuses!

How about a sticky on PIR Brood boxes just to whet our appetites?

CVB
 

Erichalfbee 

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Have a look at derekm's album.
 

Swarm 

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Making covers for hives in our mild climate really is overkill.
 

derekm 

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Making covers for hives in our mild climate really is overkill.
by that logic then so are trees nests ... but bees in this climate still like them,

Perhaps ...

Bees still wanting trees are just old fashioned,and are stuck in their ways after following the flowering trees as the ice retreated. Therefore bees need humans to modernise them and increase their heat losses by a factor of 4 and more.

Perhaps not.
 

REDWOOD 

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Just a bit of insulation on top for my hives, I really need to see empty frames for brood come spring, I had a problem this year with too much stores left at the end of winter and had to remove some frames of stores and put fresh frames of foundation and comb in.
 

Swarm 

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Bees have made nests in various places, not just trees and not all of them as insulated as you would have them choose. You may feel it is the way you want to keep bees but I repeat what I said earlier, it really is unnecessary.
 

jenkinsbrynmair 

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Funnily enough, I knew of a wild colony which settled in an old stone wall - five yards from a tree with a hollowed out trunk just above head height - still no bees in there.
 

Itchy 

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Bees have made nests in various places, not just trees and not all of them as insulated as you would have them choose. You may feel it is the way you want to keep bees but I repeat what I said earlier, it really is unnecessary.[/QUOTE

What research backs this up?
 

saaarawr 

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I was told today that bee's are very resourceful are creating their own climate in a hive without having to rely on insulation we provide that much, is that true?
 

madasafish 

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Making covers for hives in our mild climate really is overkill.
So -18C is mild?

Did not feel like it in 2011 or 2012..
 

madasafish 

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I was told today that bee's are very resourceful are creating their own climate in a hive without having to rely on insulation we provide that much, is that true?
All heat generated by bees comes at a cost of food used.

And if the bees are in a badly insulated box, they don't use teh corners or the edges as they are too cold...

Strangely enough, people who dismiss insulation tend not to mention those factors..

And I find my insulated Polyhive lang hive performs better in summer than my wooden lang hives..

Strangely enough, people who dismiss insulation tend not to mention that as well.
 

derekm 

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I was told today that bee's are very resourceful are creating their own climate in a hive without having to rely on insulation we provide that much, is that true?
But should we place them in in suboptimal condititions, worse than they would have had 4000 years ago before man removed most of the trees.
While they may probably survive in very poor (thermally) accomodation, is it ethical to keep bees that close to edge of survival. on a scale of 1 to 10
where 10 is their natural habitat,
  1. a wooden hive with top ventilation would score 1
  2. a wooden hive sealed at the top 2
  3. a polystyrene hive between 4 and 6
  4. a tree nest 10

Now why do you want to give them a lowly 1
 

Swarm 

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Bees have made nests in various places, not just trees and not all of them as insulated as you would have them choose. You may feel it is the way you want to keep bees but I repeat what I said earlier, it really is unnecessary.[/QUOTE

What research backs this up?
All the evidence of honey bee habitat has been hollow trees has it? Yeah, right. Even now I could take you to see a colony living at ground level in a cavity in a rocky outcrop.
 

Swarm 

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So -18C is mild?

Did not feel like it in 2011 or 2012..
I agree and it's been colder, but we don't seem to get that for weeks on end every year, do we?
 

derekm 

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All the evidence of honey bee habitat has been hollow trees has it? Yeah, right. Even now I could take you to see a colony living at ground level in a cavity in a rocky outcrop.[
and what were the alternatives at the time of swarming?... bees take the best available at that specific time

if theres nowt to be had they'll take nowt ~ doesnt mean thats what they want
 

Itchy 

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All the evidence of honey bee habitat has been hollow trees has it? Yeah, right. Even now I could take you to see a colony living at ground level in a cavity in a rocky outcrop.
Consistent, draught free? I can show you umpteen photos of bees that have set up home in chimney pots...mostly sealed at the bottom. This is still sub optimal conditions. I cannot comment on their perennial survival, because nobody monitors them there.
 

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