Re: Indoor wintering
I came here just for the purpose of posting one critical piece of information that so far is lacking in this thread. Fortunately, Roland's post above mine gives the supporting evidence. So far, the discussion has been around humidity levels in a bee wintering facilty. But there is one HUGE elephant in this outhouse. Simple sugar is composed of C6H12O6 molecules for fructose and glucose. When it is metabolized, one of the byproducts is WATER!!!!
Think of it this way, 6 - CO2 is one carbon with two oxygen. The O2 comes from air and the C comes from the sugar molecule. That leaves H12O6 which if you think about it is 6 - H2O. Please investigate this and I think you will find that the colder it gets, the more honey consumed, and the more water they release. The bulk of the water is NOT from the moisture content of the honey. It is from the metabolized sugar!
This does not necessarily help with determining correct humidity levels, but it will help to understand why humidity is not usually a problem in a wintering cluster. The bees are not significantly affected by external humidity, they generate all the water they need in the cluster. What is a problem and has caused numerous failures in wintering facilities is carbon dioxide buildup.
NW Alabama, 46 years, 24 colonies and growing, sideliner, treatment free since 2005, 14 frame square Dadant broodnest