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Thread: Nucs

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
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    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
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    Default Nucs

    What would you think about me putting my nucs in my pole barn for the winter? There would be less wind and no snow in the barn. They would have access to the outside if needed. They have only 3 frames filled up with brood and stores. I am feeding syrup and will do fondant over the winter.

    Thanks for opinions.

    JimmyA

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    owensboro,ky
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    2,240

    Default Re: Nucs

    IMO three frames won't overwinter
    I'd consider combining
    You can split In the spring
    Good Luck, Mike
    "Wine is a constant proof that God loves us and loves to see us happy" Ben Franklin

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2013
    Location
    adair county, kentucky, usa
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    Default Re: Nucs

    I have been considering the same thing. I have several nucs I made up to raise queens and I didn't use the queens so the nucs have grown enough that I am going to try and take them through the winter. I am considering wintering them in a three sided hay shed. I am wondering what others will have to say about the possibility of wintering nucs that way.
    Last edited by honeyman46408; 09-05-2013 at 07:40 PM. Reason: quote

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Halfway, Oregon, USA
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    160

    Default Re: Nucs

    You should look up some Kirk Webster internet anecdotes, he overwinters 4-frame nucs and is successful in central Vermont winters. I believe he had plans for insulated hive caps.

    Both places I have kept bees are characterized by bitter cold (30 below 0) and heavy snow, I have not had a problem keeping large hives. Last year I overwintered nucs on top of the hives with middling success (that I believe had more to do with the amount of brood and feed then the cold). This year I have about a dozen that I will be overwintering over large hives and double deep early nucs.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Mansfield, OH
    Posts
    101

    Default Re: Nucs

    If its a good 3 frames of bees now, with good brood and healthy they should be fine imo. I would feed them up the best I could with respect to leaving room for brood while the queen is laying heavy.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
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    106

    Default Re: Nucs

    Not sure what to do. If I combined them, I'd have to get rid of one of the queens. I have a Minnesota Hygenic and a Russian queen. Both nucs have larvae and are doing fine. I don't see any varroa mites, which is surprising as compared to when I had Italians 5 years ago. If there are any varroa, they are very small. I don't see any on the bees as compared to years ago. I have traps for hive beetles, they catch some. Next week I am scheduled to take out my beetle traps. I am using the Beetle Barn with a small coumphas strip. Just took out my Beetle Blaster traps which had some hive beetles.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
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    Default Re: Nucs

    Long story but I got started late in July. I am thinking if I shelter them in the barn that would be a plus. I have some fondant and pollen for the winter feeding. Wonder what will happen?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    West Bath, Maine, United States
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    1,142

    Default Re: Nucs

    When you say pole barn what do you mean? To some that is little more than an open shed, to others it is a regular barn built with poles to try to lower taxes.
    4 yrs, Peak 14, back to zip, T lite; godfather to brother's 3.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
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    106

    Default Re: Nucs

    At least 20 by 40 barn, not a tiny area. Three old horse stalls and room for a tractor. It has an upstairs too.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Portland, Oregon
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    967

    Default Re: Nucs

    Out of the wind and access to outside are good things.

    I've successfully overwintered 4 frame nucs in an exposed field with substantial wind.
    And know of at least one Ontario beekeeper who routinely winter two frame nucs a lot further north than either of us are.

    I'd lay the feed to them and winter them ishelterd -- not in a 10 frame box, but in one sized just right to hold the number of frames you are wintering (whether by making a new box entirely, or by just putting a follower board in your existing hive body).

    A common practice up north in Canada is the use of indoor overwintering sheds by operations big enough to justify the investment.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Louisville, KY
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    1,568

    Default Re: Nucs

    Sounds like a good idea to me. I have a 3-frame nuc, but have 2 more frames of drawn comb I plan to add once the 2nd round of brood is done hatching out.

    I am debating placing the nuc in a field of goldenrod next week, not my property ;-), right smack dab in the epicenter to build up, my hives are roughly a half mile from the large field, so the nuc would not build up much without syrup if I don't move. The larger hives actively make the haul.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Location
    Louisville, ky 40206
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    28

    Default Re: Nucs

    Hi Jimmy,
    I had several double nucs away in a small rooom in my barn last winter, I would have been fine! But the mice got in the nucs and that was bad!
    This year I will feed mice and have a entrance reducers!
    Good luck

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
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    Default Re: Nucs

    That's good thinking to remember the mice. I have honey robber screens I think I'll leave on. With the small entrance on top of the guard, I don't think I'll have to worry about mice, at least I hope not! I was just thinking, would racoons get into a hive in the barn?

    P.S. Thank you to all who have replyed.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    West Bath, Maine, United States
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    Default Re: Nucs

    Search BS for indoor wintering. You need darkness. Real darkness! The bees go to windows like moths, terrible about finding the way back to the hive.
    It is a simple idea , a complex reality.
    Use the barn as a wind break and a sunny place to go look at the bees. Not inside, get them ready for outside instead.
    4 yrs, Peak 14, back to zip, T lite; godfather to brother's 3.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2013
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    Halfway, Oregon, USA
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    Default Re: Nucs

    Quote Originally Posted by Jean-Yves View Post
    But the mice got in the nucs and that was bad!
    This year I will feed mice and have a entrance reducers!
    Good luck
    So now you're going to supply them with room and board? Traps and cats...

  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Flora,IL
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    2,644

    Default Re: Nucs

    Cpl of things, the candians do this, lock them up until spring.... problems... First off they have to be totaly dark or they will fly. and of course flyers are lost. second, they need to be kept about 40 deg F... any more and they will want to fly and deficate, any less and they use more food.
    If you let them stay much abouve 40, dysentary will set in.
    not as simple as it seems sun on a pole barn will warm it up in there.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana, USA
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    Default Re: Nucs

    The barn has an open door on one end. It's an old rotting barn. It will get cold, just be shielded from snow and wind. It will get as cold in there as the outside.

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