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Hive orientation

I seem to remember that catching the warmth of the morning sun was a good idea so you put the entrance facing that way but does it really make any difference? No one seems to worry when you do an artificial swarm.
Mistress Rose

Reading bee books back to the 16th century, that is always suggested, but if it is impossible then the bees will still survive. Think it is a good idea to get the hives into sun as early as possible so that the bees will get warm and be able to come out. A hive in shade until late afternoon won't come out very early except in very warm weather.

well...I have kept hives in 'funny' places and often totally opposite conditions that is generally recommended/advised and it haven't made any difference to the bees behaviour/success/production/health.
Last 'funny' place I had couple of hives for several years was on top of shopping centre kind of 'sunken' roof are where they didn't get proper light until mid-day and then they would get truly roasted. It was best place ever! I even trialled 'no-mite treatment' life for them and they passed bee inspectors visits with 'flying colours'. I only told him about it after he inspected them..and he was so interested about following the situation that he came back several times.
This winter the hives came back to my time will tell if I have to go back treating them again.

I do prefer to place my hives facing the morning sun ...but that is just me being nice and trying to please them.. Laughing

Thanks - I am not going to worry about it. It is in an open position and following the contour so it's level.

Ive got one hive facing North, one facing East and two in a small walled garden facing east. I dont think it makes a difference. I do give them shelter from driving wind & rain and site the hive in a place where there is a dappled light at midday.

Ive had cranky bees when a hive was near powerlines, and I avoid any animals.

My hive faces SW.
They are in the corner of a walled orchard,and to have them face east would put their flight path into an are a where the public can walk.Their present flight path sends them over the wall into a lavender field and our allotments.

I have all of mine facing south & oriented the cold ŵay.
Never tried any other so can't comment which is best.
To much shade can deter the bees from flying but to open a site can have the same effect due to too much wind.
Ideally an open sunny site protected from the wind.
Mistress Rose

We had one evil hive at the association apiary, and after having to take the honey off two years running, I refused to get involved with it again. Think they got rid of that hive and put a completely new colony on that site. Went the same way for some reason, so there must be something about that particular site, although to the human perception there was nothing wrong. We live next to a power line and have had bees in the garden (in fact we have some that need moving at the moment) and it doesn't seem to upset them.
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