Re: Multiply My Hives
Primary thing is to get them through the winter strong & in good shape.
You only have to get three things right to winter your bees. If they are healthy, properly housed, and have enough feed, they will survive. It's that easy.
Long as you are not treatment free or anything, deal with your mites now. Do whatever it takes to get rid of them. That done, focus on setting up the hives properly, and correct amount of feed. Treat each hive as an individual, ensure each one has what it takes to survive. Plan to lose none of them.
The biggest killer of hives in winter is mites. Nuc them now.
If you can get it all together you'll be well placed next spring. You want to make a lot of splits, start pumping them early with a bit of sugar syrup to encourage them to build population. Just, DON'T let them swarm. Split first.
If there are ethical issues with any of that, such as you don't agree with feeding, or whatever, then don't do it, I'm just saying how I would do it. But everybody has their own preferences.
44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).