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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    122

    Default Overwintering a single deep?

    I have hived 3 swarms and each has filled up a single deep quite nicely in the last month or two. I haven't had good luck overwintering single boxes in the past, maybe less than half have made it.

    I've wrapped, stacking singles in pairs for shared warmth and insulation. Not sure what went wrong.

    Any other tricks? These are nice strains of bees that I would like to have around next year. And... I'd rather not combine as all of the other hives have two full deeps, I feel three is overkill. All young queens worth keeping.

    Thanks again!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,790

    Default

    Try giving each a pollen patty and a candy board as well as what you already do.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    122

    Default

    Ok, a pollen patty to boost brood/numbers before frost, or a pollen patty for over winter? yeah I don't think I could get them to fill another box this late in summer.
    They are well stocked with pollen at the moment and I'm not sure they'd accept it at this point.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Sacramento,California,USA
    Posts
    3,790

    Default

    OK, yea, in winter with all the moisture probs, pollen patties aren't taken so well. They are better in fall to make sure they have good stores of it thru winter. Since you already have good pollen stores, the patties aren't needed.
    “When one tugs at a single thing in nature, he finds it attached to the rest of the world.” – John Muir

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Lincolnton Ga. USA.
    Posts
    1,725

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dirtslinger2 View Post
    I have hived 3 swarms and each has filled up a single deep quite nicely in the last month or two. I haven't had good luck overwintering single boxes in the past, maybe less than half have made it.

    I've wrapped, stacking singles in pairs for shared warmth and insulation. Not sure what went wrong.

    Any other tricks? These are nice strains of bees that I would like to have around next year. And... I'd rather not combine as all of the other hives have two full deeps, I feel three is overkill. All young queens worth keeping.

    Thanks again!
    being that you are in Vancouver, BC and your winters are so long I would believe they would need a couple full supers on them to keep from starving, singles make it through winter here in Ga but I think in your location they would starve before spring in a single deep.
    Ted

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,472

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dirtslinger2 View Post
    I haven't had good luck overwintering single boxes in the past, maybe less than half have made it. Any other tricks?
    You could place them on top of full sized colonies. On top of the bottom colony's inner, place another inner...rim up, escape hole closed, entrance to the rear. Place single on that...inner cover rim up allows the frames to hang. Place another inner on top, rim down and entrance to the rear. Insulate inner and wrap the stack as usual...make sure bottom hive has upper entrance.

    Move the singles up after flight is done for the year.
    Last edited by Michael Palmer; 08-18-2008 at 04:34 AM. Reason: Forgot to say...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Kirkland, WA, USA
    Posts
    1,020

    Default

    Conventional wisdom around here is that you need that second deep sealed with honey or sugar to get them through the winter. My survivors came through with stores that equalled about 1/2 a deep of honey left. A few people up here overwinter single deeps using the dry sugar method to feed them. Moisture to combine it with is never in short supply here.
    http://www.voiceofthehive.com - Tales of Beekeeping and Honeybees

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Montreal,Quebec,Canada
    Posts
    36

    Default

    We over winter almost 600 hives on palettes of single styrofoam boxes. The covers are also in styrofoam. The bottom boards are apinovar. We also have 400 hives that sleep inside, but and they never look or do as good as those outside. The styrofoam hives are for us a lot less work and we find that we have a lot more success in overwintering hives since we have switch from indoor to outdoor.
    for the bottom boards : http://www.reineschapleau.wd1.net/apinovar.en.html
    Low varoa and protein supplement after the honey flow definitely helps.
    For winter feed, they get between 6 and 7 gallons of syrup with a bee pro feeder.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,341

    Default

    Around here, I could overwinter a single deep of a frugal bee (Russian, Carni, feral survivors). Italians usually need two deeps. (or three mediums).
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    122

    Default

    Thanks for all the tips.
    Where did you get styrofoam boxes Cleareyes? Haven't heard of this.
    Thanks.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Sparta, Tennessee
    Posts
    2,139

    Default

    Dadant and others sell the styrofoam boxes...here's a link to the Dadant on-line catalog for the deep super...

    https://www.dadant.com/catalog/produ...roducts_id=611

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Northern Virginia
    Posts
    764

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Michael Palmer View Post
    You could place them on top of full sized colonies. On top of the bottom colony's inner, place another inner...rim up, escape hole closed, entrance to the rear. Place single on that...inner cover rim up allows the frames to hang. Place another inner on top, rim down and entrance to the rear. Insulate inner and wrap the stack as usual...make sure bottom hive has upper entrance.

    Move the singles up after flight is done for the year.
    Maybe I have not had enough coffee yet this am, but I got a little lost with your last line- why moving the single inner cover up... ?
    karla

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Vermont, USA
    Posts
    75

    Default rear entrance

    Mike-
    Why do you recommend putting the top entrance at the rear? Do you leave those rear entrances open during the summer or just the winter?

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    VENTURA, California, USA
    Posts
    3,604

    Default I'm not sure they'd accept it at this point.

    Fat bees. Skinny bees.
    You might consider putting the pollen patties on now so that the bees can have access to it 24/7 befor they cluster up for winter.
    feeding fumagillin syrup is also advised.
    Put the hives where they are out of the wind to prevent wind chil.
    The bees heat the winter cluster not the total inside of the hive.

    Regards,
    Ernie Lucas Apiaries.
    Ernie
    My websitehttp://bees4u.com/

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,472

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by winevines View Post
    Maybe I have not had enough coffee yet this am, but I got a little lost with your last line- why moving the single inner cover up... ?
    Not sure of your question. I move the single story colonies up onto the production colony after all flight is done for the year. That's usually in November here...not sure about VA. Is that what you asked?

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
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    5,472

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Dundrave View Post
    Mike-
    Why do you recommend putting the top entrance at the rear? Do you leave those rear entrances open during the summer or just the winter?
    I want the single story colony to have an entrance in a different direction that the colony down below. Since I use an upper entrance for my colonies, which is a notch in the inner cover on the front side, my inner cover arrangement for the single would have their entrance just an inch above that. Too much drift would happen.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Newark, DE
    Posts
    47

    Default

    Michael,

    Does that ever create a draft since you have a hole on each side? If the wind blows from the front or back won't it go right through the boxes? You do this when they are clustered but have you ever had them fight when they break cluster on a warmer winter day? The innver covers have opening right?

    I have 2 weak nucs I'm trying to keep through winter and was considering using my SBB to keep them separate from my 2 full colonies, and then use an entrance reducer to have the SBB be a very small opening. What do you think?

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Montreal,Quebec,Canada
    Posts
    36

    Default

    Dirtslinger2:

    I bought mind from F.W. Jones. They are the main beekeeping supplier in eastern Canada. I don't see why Bee Maid wouldn't have styrofoam bee supplies.
    http://www.fwjones.com/

    Here are two pics:
    picture 1 : first snow storm November 07
    picture 2 : summer 08

    http://picasaweb.google.com/Mielgaudreau

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,472

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Kelly Livingston View Post
    Michael,

    Does that ever create a draft since you have a hole on each side? If the wind blows from the front or back won't it go right through the boxes? You do this when they are clustered but have you ever had them fight when they break cluster on a warmer winter day? The innver covers have opening right?

    I have 2 weak nucs I'm trying to keep through winter and was considering using my SBB to keep them separate from my 2 full colonies, and then use an entrance reducer to have the SBB be a very small opening. What do you think?
    No, there's no draft...at least if there is it doesn't matter. More important to vent away the moisture. I've never seen any problem with fighting.

    My bottom hive has the inner cover escape hole closed with duct tape. I've never used sbb or double screens between the bottom hive and the nucs. My gut feeling is that there would be a lot of moisture rising from the bottom hive. Maybe you should try it, and let us know.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    St. Albans, Vermont
    Posts
    5,472

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by cleareyes View Post
    I bought mind from F.W. Jones. They are the main beekeeping supplier in eastern Canada.
    When did you get your packages from Jones? Most of the beekeepers here got put on hold until late May. I know several who say their Jones (Wilbanks) packages never made it out of the first box. June was a terrible month for building up packages...24 days of rain. I used to buy packages from Jones when I first started back in the 70's. Always got delivery in early May.

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