i want to open my hive up to add some feed is it to cold to do so yet
The real question is not is it too cold to open it, but is it too cold for the bees to reach the feed. Ya'all bein up Nawth, it's still a bit chilly, but I think that you could open the hive for a minute or so, just long enough to put feed on with out any problem.
Last weekend a neighbor told me where there are two hives, one of which is toppled over. This weekend I drove by to see where they were. Sure enough there is one that was on its side, the two deeps and the bottom still stuck together, but the two mediums, frames, inner, and top were strewn about.
Now the weather here has been danm near cold, it hasn't been above freezing all week and as low as zero three or four nights. It was about zero last night.
The hive on it's side was still buzzing. I didn't want to disturb it unless it was above freezing, so I just propped the lids up against the wide openings. The other had the top and inner cover knocked off, there was a loud buzzing coming out of that hive. Both of these hives had cinder blocks on them, so if you think that cattle are safe around your hives, you better think that over.
The amazing part of this story is that both of these hives are still alive. I don't know how many weeks the lids have been off, and the one knocked over, but one thing is for sure the beehaver who ownes them doesn't seem to care. I called the farmer that owns the property to tell him, and he said that the lady that takes care of them works for someone that owns the hives. He didn't seem to care about them one way or the other, as a matter of fact he already knew and hadn't called about it. His answer was "Well, I'm not going around them."
If the rain, sleet, snow, and harsh blowing cold hasn't killed these, I am pretty sure that you can open your hives long enough to put some feed on your hives.
Brian i have used a newspaper laying it right on top of the cluster and put a thin layer of granulated sugar about 1/4 to 1/2 inch on the paper. now this will only work if the are not starving but still have enough stores to produce some heat. the moisture given off of the cluster will moisten the paper making it wet so the bees can take the sugar.If they are about starved out i have drizzled some heavy sugar water on the top bars and some inbetween the frames not to much. close up finsh your other work in the bee yard come back to just before you leave and repeat putting on the thick sugar water. Do this only if they have allready cleaned up the first that you put on.Give them a few minuts to clean that up then put you a news paper with granulated sugar on top you dont poke any holes in the news paper. Come back in a few days to check on them they may need more