Re: covering hives for weeks at a time to suppress queen from laying
Don't think it will work, plus could cause other problems.
However, sounds like you want to do it anyway. So try it on a few hives, then you'll have a definate answer, might surprise!
If it turns out it doesn't get the desired result, I'm with Michabees, caging the queen would be the safest way.
Warning though, we have brood all winter where I am also, and I have tried caging queens for 6 weeks for the same reasons. But at the end of 6 weeks testing showed the mite count had not reduced much, if any. So I removed the caged queens, did something else to help the mites on their way, and put the queens back. All up though it was too much work, too complex, haven't done it again.
Last edited by Oldtimer; 02-02-2013 at 02:44 PM.
44 years, been commercial, outfits up to 4000 hives, now 120 hives and 200 nucs as a hobby, selling bees. T (mostly).