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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Quincy, Washington
    Posts
    56

    Default overwintering indoors?

    I have a potatoe shed that will be empty this year? Are bees ever stored inside large buildings? If so would I just keep the lights off and if there happens to be a warm day this winter then open the door and turn on the lights so they could take a cleansing flight?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Cambria County, PA US
    Posts
    404

    Default

    Ventilation would be a big concern...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Beecher Il
    Posts
    76

    Default

    If your going to try to keep bees inside it has to be pitch black, cool and have air exchange.
    The colder it is the more honey they eat to stay warm and build up waist in there gut. The warmer it is the more they crawl. 35 to 45f Seems to be a good temp range. You can go higher in temp but there needs to be steady air movement to keep them in the hive. If you turn the lights on they will fly to them and will get lost. Hope this helps.
    Al

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,427

    Default

    There are more issues in indoor wintering than outdoor wintering. Try a search there have been many discussions with many contributions from those who have already made the mistakes.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Quincy, Washington
    Posts
    56

    Default

    Ok, I think I will just leave them outside. I was asking because I had this big building sitting empty and thought maybe it would be good but, thought there may be some issues. Thanks for all the insight.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Kent, WA USA
    Posts
    24

    Default

    Just an FYI, there is a large commercial operation in Idaho who winters bees in a potatoe warehouse. With all the controls for temp and humidity it makes it pretty easy and certainly cuts down on the winter loses. The article about this operation was in a recent ABJ.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Manitoba Canada
    Posts
    5,786

    Default

    >>If so would I just keep the lights off and if there happens to be a warm day this winter then open the door and turn on the lights so they could take a cleansing flight?


    NO, once they are in, they stay until spring arives. You should have ventalation fans to help them through warming spells. Got to keep it dark and quiet
    Ian Steppler >> Canadian Beekeeper's Blog
    www.stepplerfarms.com

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