Re: Tim Ives Method
Yeah Ian, temperature does make a difference.
Daniel, when did you find the brood nest in the bottom deep? If you can go in real early they will be in the bottom deep because they haven't consumed the honey yet. The the thing is no body up here is going to truck through the snow to go out to their hive in February and brush off the snow to checkerboard their hive. What for?
My limited experience with bees has convinced me that if you have a healthy hive and leave more than enough honey for the winter, that hive will go gang busters in the spring and you will have all you can do to keep up with it.
Almost anything you do that disrupts the brood nest will deter the colony from swarming, be it reversing boxes, checkerboarding or just slapping on empty boxes and pulling up the center frames. Bees are so simple it isn't funny but the time required to manipulate them is a commitment. I could never be a commercial beekeeper because you work your butt off for not enough rewards in my opinion but a hobbyist beekeeper is a walk in the park.
Zone 5a, Practicing non-intervention beekeeping