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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Hudsonville, MI
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Lost all my hives! :-(

    Quote Originally Posted by NCSUbeeKEEPER View Post
    It seems like every post involving mass losses is coming from Michigan this year. Any Michigan beeks out there have a successful over-winter?
    We're in Hudsonville, MI and our bees did quite well this past winter. So far we are 10 for 10 which is better than expected. We normally see some over-wintering losses and haven't been this successful in quite a few years. I've posted a writeup with some photos on our blog:

    http://www.hudsonvillehoney.com/2011...the-survivors/

    Enjoy,
    Jonathan

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Hesperia, Michigan
    Posts
    32

    Default Re: Lost all my hives! :-(

    Quote Originally Posted by jengelsma View Post
    We're in Hudsonville, MI and our bees did quite well this past winter. So far we are 10 for 10 which is better than expected.
    Hi Jonathan,

    Glad to hear of your success!

    I just read your blog(s) and see that you switched to Russians. Can you tell me when you made the switch? Also were your bottom deeps covered with snow most of the winter. Being in Hudsonville you got a lot of lake effect snow this year. I am wondering if the deeper snow also helped moderate the hive temp during those windy -20F nights we had. My hives sit on two layers of cement block and don't get covered with snow. Not a problem in the past, but am wondering if it was a contributing factor this winter.

    Thx,

    Jay

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Hudsonville, MI
    Posts
    22

    Default Re: Lost all my hives! :-(

    Quote Originally Posted by skflyfish View Post
    Hi Jonathan,

    Glad to hear of your success!

    I just read your blog(s) and see that you switched to Russians. Can you tell me when you made the switch? Also were your bottom deeps covered with snow most of the winter. Being in Hudsonville you got a lot of lake effect snow this year. I am wondering if the deeper snow also helped moderate the hive temp during those windy -20F nights we had. My hives sit on two layers of cement block and don't get covered with snow. Not a problem in the past, but am wondering if it was a contributing factor this winter.

    Thx,

    Jay
    Hello Jay,

    I don't remember exactly when we got our first Russian hybrids, I think it's been around 5 years now. They build up slower in the Spring than the Italians, but generally winter quite well.

    I've got my hives setting on 4x4s, so the bottoms of the hives were definitely covered in snow. In my experience the mites are the biggest factor in overwintering. If you have high mite counts in the Fall, the odds are not going to be good regardless of the temperatures.

    Jonathan

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Jonesboro, AR
    Posts
    215

    Default Re: Lost all my hives! :-(

    No bugs no goo, no mess what so ever
    Same with me also and I don't understand where the bees went. No swarm cells or supercedure cells and no bees left. Last year I lost a couple hives to starvation and plenty of dead bees on the sbb's. Hives still had plenty of stores which I have frozen now to use later. Is this mites?

  5. #25
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Jonesboro, AR
    Posts
    215

    Default Re: Lost all my hives! :-(

    Quote Originally Posted by USCBeeMan View Post
    Dutch, if there were plenty of stores and yet only a small amount of dead bees, perhaps it was trachel mites. Most bees are lost to trachel mites during the winter.

    Just a thought.
    Would the dead bees not be on the bottom board though?

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