I was unwrapping hives yesterday and had several boomers (bees covering tops of all frames in double deep box and "exploding out") Is there any practical reason to disrupt things by examining each brood frame in such a colony?
My standard MO with a hive such as this is to move the hive bodies off of the bottom board which then gets cleaned - entrance reducer left in place on small setting. Then I make a judgement call to reverse boxes. If there does not seem a strong population in the bottom box the boxes get reversed. (The inner cover also gets reversed so that the notch is up - Auger holes in the boxes are uncovered when the tar paper is removed so the bees don't loose their only upper entrance, rather they must start using another)
My logic has me spending time with colonies that are not booming - trying to understand why. In this particular yard that went into winter with 10 colonies, 7 colonies survived - 4 boomers and 3 smaller. The 3 that didn't survive all had a bunch of undrawn foundation in them and if I had been smart last fall I would have pulled the yet to be drawn boxes and attempted to over winter them as singles.
Thoughts? I was very glad to be back in the bees!