SoCal Beekeeping

 Hive Shade Cover
P. Michael Henderson

Most of the year we have fairly mild weather.  But the last couple of years, August and September have been really hot.  Having the hive sitting in the sun puts a load on the bees to keep the hive cool.

Some time back I built a cover for one of my hives.  I didn't make the cover too wide because I want the bees to get the morning sun.  The top is slanted towards the south.  This seems to have worked well. (The hive boxes in the foreground are empty.)

I recently did a cutout and have a medium sized group of bees in a brood box.  I wanted to protect them from the sun so I rigged up a shade until I could build something permanent.  I took two saw horses and added some extensions to make a higher support for a painter's drop cloth.  I stapled the drop cloth to the cross bar of the extensions.

I was concerned that wind or rain might cause the saw horses to collapse inward so I ran a 2 by 4 between the two saw horses, making sure that the 2 by 4 did not touch the hive (and allow ants to get in).  I clamped the 2 by 4 to the saw horses.

This should work until I can build something permanent.