Why don’t we recommend insulating hives in Southern Idaho?

Why don’t you insulate your hives?  If the hive is strong, has low mites, health bees and plenty of food, it’s a non-issue.  Insulation works by resisting heat flow. It also works both ways it can prevent a hive from warming naturally on a warm day. The ebb and flow of daytime and nigh time temperatures allow the hive to expand and contract the cluster and move as needed.  If you can’t resist using some type of insulation, I have found that ¼ inch foam under the lid, over the inner cover doesn’t seem to hurt anything, and on a warm fall like we had actually kept them a little cooler and slowed down activity on the unseasonably warm fall. Basically, it shaded them from the sun and helped them stay shut down.  I have a few lids that I have built that way as a trial. Overall, I would focus my energy on managing varroa and making sure the hive is well provisioned!

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