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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Lincoln,California
    Posts
    4

    Default Wintering Question.

    I am running 10 frame double deeps. My question is should I remove the top box once all the stores(what little there was to start with) have been used up by the bees. My thought was since I am now feeding paddies and syrup to keep them going, by removing the empty supper/brood chamber would it help the bees stay warmer by making them all singles? Thanks Blair

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Mt. Pleasant, Iowa, USA
    Posts
    52

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    by removing the empty supper/brood chamber would it help the bees stay warmer

    Yes-There would be less space for the bees to heat. If there is no stores/brood/pollen, etc., in the upper, it does not need to be there. However, make sure it's above 50 degrees to open the hive up/manipulate them, and you need to make sure they are not clustered in that box, etc. prior to this. Are there any brood laid in that comb? Local issues weather/temperature related on whether you can/should do this now.
    Regards,
    KGB-8FmedTF

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    46,742

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    Odds are the "emtpy" box will be full of bees. I would leave them alone.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Great Falls Montana
    Posts
    4,264

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    Feed the bees.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2014
    Location
    Calhoun, MICHIGAN, USA
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    In Michigan we think winter for the bees starts in August. In Late Summer, our focus is on making Winter Bees. You need strong Heater bees for the long Winters in Michigan.
    We treat our bees with a Microbial Product that helps with the creation of Winter bees.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JUnCV9sd67c

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Camarillo, CA, USA
    Posts
    316

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    we push hive down to singles every year, just did a bunch this week. they do better inn tight chambers
    Larry Pender,Jubilee HoneyBee Company,Camarillo, CA

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Larimer County, CO, USA
    Posts
    202

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    In your area of CA is it still warm enough to feed syrup?

    If it is- give them heavy syrup to build up reserves. I used 5:3 this year and liked it a lot.

    Take a look here: http://bushfarms.com/beesfeeding.htm

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Auckland,Auckland,New Zealand
    Posts
    6,127

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    If the hive has little feed, it's more likely the cluster will be at the top and it would be easier to remove the bottom box which may be totally empty other than some pollen.

    However I'm with Michael Bush on this, mid winter could be best not to mess with them at all. Other than feed if needed of course although even that should not be needed if the hives were properly prepared in fall.
    44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    chilliwack, bc
    Posts
    658

    Default Re: Wintering Question.

    the food is usually in the top box and the winter cluster goes through it from the bottom up until the are intirely in the top box. Hear in the north we don't remove any supers unless it's very weak and it's usually the bottom super that mostly empty but for some frames of pollen.

    other then that, heat rises so by the time brooding starts at the beginning of february, the bees are still sharing between the two chambers and are steadily moving up through the weeks during build up. quit often by mid march they start expanding downward until i reverse some time in april. all that empty comb and pollen come in usefull then.
    Will Gruenwald Chilliwack BC

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