I'm a newbee who's (hopefully) going to make it through the first year with my one hive intact and ready to go. However, I'm getting a bit anxious as I understand a lot of die-offs happen right as spring approaches and the bees try to brood up for the oncoming season. So, I'm trying to think about the best plan to ensure I have bees for the coming year. I'm committed to having/needing 2 hives this coming year, but have space for no more than that. The plan (if everything goes well) is to split my current hive when the drones start flying around here, giving me the two hives I need.

So, here's the question: I'd like to have a backup plan in case my hive tanks it in the final part of winter. The obvious choice is to reserve a couple packages from our local supplier before they sell out. However, if my hive makes it, then I don't need (or want) the extra bees. I'll have no space and no woodenware for them. Is it kosher to reserve a couple packages and then if my hive makes it, un-reserve the packages a few weeks before they are to arrive? Does that create a nuiscence for the folks selling packages, or do they always have a list of buyers longer than their supply of packages? What policies do your local suppliers have? (I'd ask mine directly, but they are.... challenging, shall we say.... to talk to.)

Any thoughts appreciated.

P.S. Nucs are probably not a viable purchase option, as I run Warre hives, and there are no suppliers of Warre nucs around here that I know of.