☯ Beekeeping Tip # 13

 Beekeeping Tip # 13

Put your hives in full sun. 
Many beekeepers are putting their hives in the best place for the family, forgetting the best place for the bees. I get it! Family first!! But the healthy hive has many considerations. Full sun can keep many pest concerns to a minimum. For this tip it is small hive beetle, SHB.

Small Hive Beetle

Small hive beetle flies into the hive. It can ruin a honey crop, make the hive abscond and slime frames of brood. A hive in full sun has less SHB.

SHB near the end bar

It is unclear why SHB is lower when hives are in full sun. Personally, I don't care why when it is an easy organic fix!  SHB can make a strong hive abscond when it begins it's sliming of the hive.
SHB lays eggs all through the hive in messy clusters.

  • egg 2-3 days
  • larval stage feeding 5 - 10 days
  • larval non-feeding 5 -8 days
  • pupae  5 to 11 days (in soil)
  • young adult 5-9 days
  • emerge from soil
Females are capable of laying egg 24 hours after soil emergence.

SHB larvae


So , if it is possible , move those hives to full sun. Think of it as pest management.
I have some hives that I must move in late fall for the winter to sunnier spots. The autumn sun is so different than spring or summer that the hives are in the deep shade by 2 pm! Could this be a consideration in your apiary?

Ruined honey frame


A note about varroa; this sunny local has also been noted to decrease varroa populations. Again, not exactly understood why, but I'll take it!!

Further reading;