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  1. #1

    Default How many medium boxes going into winter?

    I am a first year beekeeper. My hive has been going strong all summer and I have four boxes of wax, plus a super. Two weeks ago, my bottom brood box was empty. I put it above my second box full of brood. I will go into my hive tomorrow and I have been told I should reduce to three boxes for winter. This would mean removing box three or four that are full of honey on wax. If I leave the bees alone will they take the honey down where they need it? Should I take off the top box and harvest it, or is it o.k. to have four boxes?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Fairfield County, Connecticut, USA

    Default Re: How many medium boxes going into winter?

    I would have left the empty box off.

    Four boxes would be fine but I wouldn't keep an empty.

    All seven of my 8 frame hives are reduced to three boxes for the winter.
    Trying to think inside the box...

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Barrie, Ontario, Canada

    Default Re: How many medium boxes going into winter?

    3 mediums is a little less than the two deeps that is common further north. 4 deeps is a little more, I can't see this being a problem. I am going into winter with a deep and two mediums and when I am finished transitioning to all mediums, I will likely winter on 4 mediums.
    Adam - Zone 5A

  4. #4

    Default Re: How many medium boxes going into winter?

    Thanks for the advice........
    I put the empty box back on the bottom because there was no action in it and it seemed like I split their brood nest in half with an empty box. I don't want to remove it completely because it does have some pollen. I took off the super and the next day I went to take a few frames of wax from the top box and to my surprise I found a lot more brood then I expected. Now I wonder if I should put the empty bottom box on the top. I put on the feeder and I am wondering if the they will put the honey in the top rather than the bottom if I move the box.
    Any thoughts???????

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Fort Wayne, IN

    Default Re: How many medium boxes going into winter?

    NEVER reverse boxes this time of year! The bees know what they are doing and are arrangiing brood and honey they way they need it for winter. Generally they will work from top to bottom filling in with honey as they go. Number of boxes you leave is less important than the weight (amount of honey). You need to pull honey supers early enough to give them time to stock up for winter or else feed. George Imrie use to say give them too much room in the spring and crowd them in the fall.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Bentonville, Arkansas, USA

    Default Re: How many medium boxes going into winter?

    I also have the very same problem. I am in NW Arkansas and need 50 pounds of honey for the bees in winter. I use 8 frame mediums. Both hives have some open brood nest that by feeding the combs would fill up. Do I feed or remove a box of poorly filled combs.? I have 4 boxes on now., but there are really 3 1/2 boxes of bees and honey.


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