I'm coming through my first winter as a beekeeper and, based on the activity I see at the entrances, both of my hives have made it so far. I'm in Pensacola, FL so our winters are fairly mild here. It's going to be nearly 70 today. My hives are eight frame medium equipment, and each hive is three boxes tall at the moment. While I realize that it's still January, if I understand correctly, much of our honey flow is about to get underway. So I'm starting to think of how best to prepare my two colonies.

I believe that I need to remove any leftover stores from winter and give them plenty of room work for the flow. So it was my thought to remove one box and process the honey, which would reduce each hive to two boxes. Then as we approach late February/early March when the flow takes off in earnest I can monitor their progress and start adding back boxes as necessary.

Does that sound about right? Am I jumping the gun by removing excess stores in January? Should I wait until February for that? Your input is appreciated as this is my first time at this.

Thanks in advance,