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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Chicagoland, IL, USA
    Posts
    71

    Default Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    I'm in need of some advice from those more experienced.

    New beek - chickens 4yrs, garden 10+yrs, carpenter 20+ yrs. But in this case of bee installation, I'm flummoxed!

    New KTBH with 1" foundation strips attached to top bars ala Dr. Magnum's recommendations. Observation hive made of 1" thick boards and inserted plexi peek-a-boo windows (think storm windows). Windows covered with 1/2" piece of wood on hinges.

    3# packages with queens arriving Thursday noon.

    Thursday weather - sunny, warm, high mid 60's
    Thursday night - cold front from Colorado moves into area dropping temps overnight to below 28 degrees
    Friday weather - rainy, cold, wet, high low 40's
    Friday night - cold front moves out, low of mid 30's
    Saturday weather - seasonably warm, sunny, mild, mid to high 50's
    Similar for rest of week.

    So, knowing this cold front is moving in....do I delay installation of the packages until Saturday morning (an extra day) and bring the bees into my insulated cool garage (dry), provide sugar water spritzes every couple hours and wait for the sun?

    Or do I install in the nice weather immediately, knowing something nasty is coming in shortly and keep fingers crossed for overnight.

    Intend to hang the queen from bar #4 on a piece of wire about an inch from bottom of foundation strip.

    What would YOU do if this was your hive? Got about 22hrs to figure it out and hoping for some enlightenment here! Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Oceanside, New York
    Posts
    69

    Default Re: Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    I would install the package as soon as you get it. Just make sure to give them a good helping of sugar water easily accessible to them. You can throw a blanket over the hive overnight if you see it getting freezing or near it. They won't be coming out at night anyway. Just don't block the entrance hole so they have some breathing room and ventilation.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Location
    Nehawka, Nebraska USA
    Posts
    45,802

    Default Re: Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    I would install them. Put they syrup in as hot as you can put your finger in and not get burned. Any day it doesn't get above 60 F warm the syrup up again. Once the days are staying warm enough they should be able to take the syrup.
    Michael Bush bushfarms.com/bees.htm "Everything works if you let it." ThePracticalBeekeeper.com 40y 200h 37yTF

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Chicagoland, IL, USA
    Posts
    71

    Default Re: Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    Thank you for the helpful information!
    I hadn't considered warming the syrup - that's ingenious! I give my chickens warm treats on cold wet days....makes sense to do so for new bees also!

    Little wrinkle in all this though. Last night's rainfall created a 500yr flood - check the Chicago Tribune's front page to see what I'm battling. The apiary is completely underwater to the bottom of the hives. I've rescued the hives (and our hens who were also swimming away!) and they're now drying out - hives and hens. Going to pick up packages this afternoon, but am now rethinking of where the hives are located. Yeesh, it's always something!

    Our 2 acre backyard is a 4 acre lake at the moment. Beyond our property and up into ALL of our neighbor's (we're in a bowl). So thankfully, I won't have to worry about providing water for them! It'll take a month to dry this out - at the least! Mosquito's anyone?!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Oceanside, New York
    Posts
    69

    Default Re: Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    Oh, boy, and you are signed on as "life is good", if you're a frog!!!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Calhoun Co, Texas, USA
    Posts
    1,310

    Default Re: Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    Quote Originally Posted by Life is Good! View Post
    Our 2 acre backyard is a 4 acre lake at the moment. Beyond our property and up into ALL of our neighbor's (we're in a bowl). So thankfully, I won't have to worry about providing water for them! It'll take a month to dry this out - at the least! Mosquito's anyone?!
    I know this is slightly off-topic, but "mosquitofish," guppies, mollies, and sword-tails (yes, the tropical fish) are all EXCELLENT mosquito eaters, and low-maintenance enough that you could toss a dozen or so out the back door & they'll multiply in the "lake" while controlling your mosquito population for you!
    If you had a more "permanent" problem, I'd likely recommend gettin' a few Pekin Ducks...I have about a dozen of those in a fence @ my pond; they keep the mosquito numbers WAY down from what they used to be, and don't bother my bees when they come to get a drink.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Location
    Chicagoland, IL, USA
    Posts
    71

    Default Re: Weather and new package installation question - new hive

    Quote Originally Posted by robherc View Post
    I know this is slightly off-topic, but "mosquitofish," guppies, mollies, and sword-tails (yes, the tropical fish) are all EXCELLENT mosquito eaters, and low-maintenance enough that you could toss a dozen or so out the back door & they'll multiply in the "lake" while controlling your mosquito population for you!
    If you had a more "permanent" problem, I'd likely recommend gettin' a few Pekin Ducks...I have about a dozen of those in a fence @ my pond; they keep the mosquito numbers WAY down from what they used to be, and don't bother my bees when they come to get a drink.
    Well, with any luck, this 'pond' of ours will not hang around much beyond 3wks. The apiary location has to be re-determined...as it's presently up to the bottom board of my TBH...but with some thoughful planning, I can figure this one out.
    Ducks, well, the good 'ol N.Am. version have taken to this new situation nicely. Got a few pairs swimming around back there. The worms however, aren't so pleased. Ever see a worm try to climb a blade of grass to get out of the water? Well, I have! Just this afternoon, in fact!
    Nope, the pumps are a running full tilt - so the lake should be down somewhat by the end of the weekend. If G-d provides warm, dry days that would be even nicer to dry us all out! We'll see, but for now, we're thankful for electricity, hydraulics and for smarts enough to get it all out ahead of time!

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