Starvation?
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Thread: Starvation?

  1. #1

    Default Starvation?

    I'm located in upstate NY in zone 4. Cold climate, although we've had a relatively mild winter. Past few days temps have been in the low 30's and today so far is upper 20's. Checked on my one small hive (1 shallow, 1 deep) and the bees are all clustered on the top of the frames of the upper super just under the inner cover (some are on the top of the inner cover). Their supplies in the upper super are adequate. This is my first winter and I'm a bit confused by this behavior.

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  3. #2
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
    Posts
    1,649

    Default Re: Starvation?

    It’s possible they’ve chimneyed, where they run thru a couple frames of stores and ended up at the top, or they started brooding up early and ran thru the stores. Either way, it’s not a good sign for this time of year. I would be putting feed on them ASAP.
    The easiest (and less stressful on the bees) way would be to set a medium box on a queen excluder, a single piece of newspaper and slightly moistened sugar (5 to 7lb) on that. That way you can just pull the inner cover set it on and seal the joint w/ duct tape.
    Rod

  4. #3

    Default Re: Starvation?

    Quote Originally Posted by rwlaw View Post
    Itís possible theyíve chimneyed, where they run thru a couple frames of stores and ended up at the top, or they started brooding up early and ran thru the stores. Either way, itís not a good sign for this time of year. I would be putting feed on them ASAP.
    The easiest (and less stressful on the bees) way would be to set a medium box on a queen excluder, a single piece of newspaper and slightly moistened sugar (5 to 7lb) on that. That way you can just pull the inner cover set it on and seal the joint w/ duct tape.
    If I'm understanding correctly, remove the inner cover from the top of the super, replace it with the queen excluded, place a sheet of newspaper on with the moistened sugar. Then place th inner cover over the medium box seal the joint and put the telescoping cover on?

  5. #4
    Join Date
    May 2009
    Location
    Grand Rapids MI USA
    Posts
    1,649

    Default Re: Starvation?

    Yup, you got it. That’s the way my ole mentor bud does it right away in the beginning of winter and has done it that way for years. Normal “mountain camp” feeding is a feeder ring, newspaper and sugar on the top bars, but it’d too much stress on them for you to get them out of the way and do it w/ a feeder ring.
    By the way, you might want to drill a least a 3/8” hole under the handhold area in the feeder box for a upper entrance, you can dowel it shut later if you wish.
    Rod

  6. #5

    Default Re: Starvation?

    Thanks so much for this advice. I really appreciate it and am heading out to do this right now.

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