Re: Next winter!
I winter some in two deeps (new hives), the rest in either 2 1/2 or 3 deeps. I can usually get all three types through our winters, the Idea with the 2 1/2 and three deeps is the bees fill the bottom box with extra pollen, the extra honey on the hives in the spring, means extra bees in the spring if you have young queens and have done your mite treatement in the fall. extra bees allows you to take a nuc or two off without affecting your honey output. this year was the worst winter I have seen, lost some of each but most two deeps wouldn't have made it without the honey from deadouts, last year an easy winter, no honey had to be moved around. This year all my hives are living on the edge, first time I had to feed in the spring and the bees are easily two weeks behind. When I compare my losses to the beeks around me I'm happy that I run 3 deeps, my partner doesn't agree, tells me its a pain, even as we pulled the honey last year from his hives and I kept reminding him the majority of the honey he was getting was off the 3 deeps and this spring when most of his survivers were in three deeps. three deeps makes mite control harder? trickier? because they only give recommendations for two deeps or less so you have to find what works for you on that. I used mite-way II in the fall between upper two brood chambers, a pain to do but works, by the time I put it on the top chamber has no brood so in my opinion same as a two deep. good luck what ever you decide you will have to come up with a management style that suits what you do!!!
mike syracuse ny
I went to bed mean, and woke up meaner. Marshal Dillon