FYI: We have installed air conditioning in our sales room.
|This hive was overcrowded earlier in the year. But it is a good pic for a hot hive. The hive is hot and bees are hanging outside|
How does the hot weather affect the bees?
When it gets really hot, the bees will hang out on the front of the hive. This is normal.
Inside the hive it is packed with bees. Bees are hanging on and covering the frames. With the large population of bees it is hard to cool the hive. To compensate for the heat, collection of water increases. Water is placed throughout the hive and the bees will fan their wings to create air currents. The air currents evaporate the water and have a cooling effect similar to a swamp cooler that are used in the drier western states for air conditioning. The weather that is coming has high heat and humidity. The high humidity make evaporating the water in the hive more difficult and the cooling effect from evaporating the water is not as great. So to help cool the hive, bees will move out of the hive to reduce crowding on the frames. The bees can cover the front of the hive, cluster under the front of the bottom board, and/or cluster underneath the front edge of the telescoping cover.
Taking measures like lifting covers can make cooling the hive harder. Bees set up air currents in the hive by fanning. Creating a large opening may make it harder for the bees to cool the hive.
When the temperatures cool of the bees will move back inside.