Re: 2010 winter mortality rates?
I checked 55 hives the other day. Two were dead, another has a dwindling cluster, these three are in a yard that had all purchased queens in 2009, I expected to lose 5 out of eight as the queens just would not shut down, I kept feeding until too cold, and finally put full frames of honey on them in Nov. Strangest thing I have seen, the two dead hives, that in Nov. had a cluster ready for a honey flow, had some dead bees on either side of the top deep, a few dead bees on the bottom board, and five full frames of caped brood in the lower deep, no cluster or any bees. the snow on the entrace had been opened by the bees and dead bees hauled out, now it had snowed two days b/4, so there had to bee bees alive two days before. none of the other hives had the snow opened up. but no cluster in either hive, I would bet that they had swarmed in the last couple of days but temps never were above freezing?? plenty of stores as I moved the top deep full of honey onto two other hives. can't wait the weather is going to get up to around 45 f, got to go look again.
mike syracuse ny
I went to bed mean, and woke up meaner. Marshal Dillon