2020 How was your winter? - Page 6
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  1. #101
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Catskills, Delaware Cty, New York, USA
    Posts
    2,020

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by RBCofficer View Post
    my winter has not gone to well. Build up last summer and started selling nucs (32). went into winter with 9 very strong "mother hives" that I hoped to do some major splits from come spring. Well thats not happening as a bear decided to come and visit. Complete disaster and nothing was left, lost them all. So, I will be starting from scratch this spring.
    So sorry to hear that, I hope JW can help you out.
    Proverbs 16:24

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  3. #102
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    4,233

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    RBC.....
    Well thats not happening as a bear decided to come and visit.
    Stupid bear.
    Good luck
    gww
    zone 5b

  4. #103
    Join Date
    Sep 2016
    Location
    Murphy, TX
    Posts
    446

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Winter was mild here In North Texas. Still lost 4 weak hives this winter. Rest of them are doing very well building up nicely as I write this. Starting this year with 21 hives.

    PS: Made lots of frames this winter but still need to make boxes. Gotta work fast.

  5. #104
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Ojai, California
    Posts
    2,643

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    No where near enough rain out here on the Left Coast - back to drought conditions.

    as of late February, the nights are starting to get a little bit warmer - warm days and cool nights lately, but that's changing rapidly.

  6. #105
    Join Date
    Aug 2018
    Location
    Farmville Va.
    Posts
    10

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    thank you guys. This did suck, was just starting to really "get it" and grow.
    JW thank you very much for the offer. I do have 2 packages and 2 overwinter nucs on order. New location and electric fence already picked up and set up. Hope this will make the hives alittle safer. Thanks again.

  7. #106
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Wise county,Texas
    Posts
    339

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by pjigar View Post
    Winter was mild here In North Texas. Still lost 4 weak hives this winter. Rest of them are doing very well building up nicely as I write this. Starting this year with 21 hives.

    PS: Made lots of frames this winter but still need to make boxes. Gotta work fast.
    Truth! Found hatched drones in 2 hives yesterday, drone brood in a couple others. Pollen coming in heavy honey/syrup being used faster than I can get it on it seems, but buds are starting to show on fruit trees.

    Never lost a hive over winter..yet....
    “Never be afraid to try something new. Remember, amateurs built the Ark, professionals built the Titanic”

  8. #107
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Rib Lake WI
    Posts
    1,737

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Winter isn't going to be done until April

  9. #108
    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Winchester, Wyoming
    Posts
    86

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    We had a very warm January and then a relatively hard February. Less than 2 weeks ago, we had a morning low of -13 F......yesterday, we hit 49 F, with a “dusting” of snow last night. So far, my two hives have survived. Will start feeding soon, just in case they’ve depleted their supplies. memtb

  10. #109
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Cedar Lake, Indiana, USA
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Pretty mild for Northwest Indiana. A few days around zero. Most about 20-30 deg and a few spikes into the 40's. Keeping an eye on supplemental feed as a few of the girls are up top already. Lost one weak nuc out of ten. All 27 colonies seem to be doing well. Not out of the woods yet though.

  11. #110
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    Wakefield, Rhode Island, USA
    Posts
    385

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    "Winter isn't going to be done until April" - I have learned not to trust the calendar, barely know what day of the week it is. Winter is over here with the first pollen coming into a hive (garlic is growing too). But! I do not plant warm weather veggies until the last full moon in May

  12. #111
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Northern Il, USA
    Posts
    621

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike B1 View Post
    Lost one weak nuc out of ten.
    5-frame nucs? I am just a bit north of you in Illinois. I have 2 5-frame nucs which seem to be doing fine. I stuffed a second nuc with insulation batts and put it on top and they seem to like that. So it's two nucs high but only one nuc of bee space.

    It hit 56 degrees here today, and the bees are going crazy. Looks like mid-summer with all the bees in the air. Nothing for them to eat though. Daffodils and leeks just now popping up an inch out of the dirt. Nothing else growing at all.

  13. #112
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Catskills, Delaware Cty, New York, USA
    Posts
    2,020

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    12 degrees this AM, now 39. Tomorrow afternoon it should be over 50 (woohoo!) so I need to add some honey frames to 2 hives that are building up and put out some dry pollen, they should take it. All 20 were flying the other day including the dbl nuc; a few with smaller clusters. I hope they all make it, Ive lost good hives in April before.
    Proverbs 16:24

  14. #113
    Join Date
    Oct 2019
    Location
    Wakefield, Rhode Island, USA
    Posts
    385

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Spring has started here today - one hive is bringing in two types of pollen - March 2, 2020. This is the earliest I have seen so far. Seventeen days ahead of last year.

    I better hurry up with chores.

  15. #114
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Mt. Airy, Maryland, USA
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    This is what is going on today in my Apiary, it's 64 here today. Winter so far has been strange, cold one day, warm the next. The bees have been bringing in pollen all season, dandelions have been blooming most of the winter. Anything can happen before mid April, so I count my chickens... I think a split is in my near future. Happy beekeeping!!
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  16. #115
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Somerset, NJ
    Posts
    482

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    60s today and did my first inspection. All are doing well. Strongest hive already has 16 deep frames covered with bees. I put another deep on that one and checker boarded it. Put pollen sub on all the hives. Have never seen them this strong this early. 2 things I did differently this past year: besides the normal mite treatment times I also treated in May and fed them winter patties this season. That will be my plan going forward.

  17. #116
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Catskills, Delaware Cty, New York, USA
    Posts
    2,020

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    All flying today; looked into 3 honey stores good. I did find some nectar in a few cells, I have a feeling they are robbing the maple sap buckets/containers, there is nothing else out and it’s been too cold to fly.
    And the bee tree was flying today,
    Proverbs 16:24

  18. #117
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Litchfield, Ct, USA
    Posts
    290

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by RBCofficer View Post
    my winter has not gone to well. Build up last summer and started selling nucs (32). went into winter with 9 very strong "mother hives" that I hoped to do some major splits from come spring. Well thats not happening as a bear decided to come and visit. Complete disaster and nothing was left, lost them all. So, I will be starting from scratch this spring.
    Sorry about that, I had the same thing happen to me. Not as many hives as you and one actually survived, but many setbacks because of bear attacks. I put a real electric fence around them and the bear has since bypassed them (unfortunately getting into my porch though).

  19. #118
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Litchfield, Ct, USA
    Posts
    290

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    No bees flying today out of 4 (well three I guess since I knew one was dead already). At least three had enough food with honey frames and mountain camp on top. In one hive I found a small dead cluster around the queen. I brushed the cluster aside and found a bunch of bees below it with their butts sticking out of the cells. I'm going to try to enclose a picture.

    This sucks, four hives out of four didn't make it. I put mountain camp on top of the frames with a shim, then the inner cover, then a piece of 2" insulation that fit perfectly in the top cover. Now I'm wondering if the insulation made it too warm and there wasn't enough airflow up top to get rid of the moisture? But there was sugar below it, so I'm guessing that should've soaked up any dripping anyway. Idk, this is frustrating. It just seems I had better success overwintering last year with no inner insulation.

    dead bee cluster.jpgdead bee butts.jpg

  20. #119
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Rosebud Missouri
    Posts
    4,233

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Jimbo
    Bummer dude. I do insulate my tops but do not do the sides. In years before I have did the shim with sugar and insulation just as you describe and the bees lived. I am in zone 5b and don't know if that is different. Wishing you the best.
    Cheers
    gww
    zone 5b

  21. #120
    Join Date
    Jul 2016
    Location
    Somerset, NJ
    Posts
    482

    Default Re: 2020 How was your winter?

    Quote Originally Posted by jimbo3 View Post
    No bees flying today out of 4 (well three I guess since I knew one was dead already). At least three had enough food with honey frames and mountain camp on top. In one hive I found a small dead cluster around the queen. I brushed the cluster aside and found a bunch of bees below it with their butts sticking out of the cells. I'm going to try to enclose a picture.

    This sucks, four hives out of four didn't make it. I put mountain camp on top of the frames with a shim, then the inner cover, then a piece of 2" insulation that fit perfectly in the top cover. Now I'm wondering if the insulation made it too warm and there wasn't enough airflow up top to get rid of the moisture? But there was sugar below it, so I'm guessing that should've soaked up any dripping anyway. Idk, this is frustrating. It just seems I had better success overwintering last year with no inner insulation.

    dead bee cluster.jpgdead bee butts.jpg
    Sorry to hear that they didn't make it for you. Had the same issue last year, lost 4 of 5. I had also insulated and fed mountain camp. This year no insulation and fed them winter patties instead. This year 4 of 4 survived. That is what I'm going to do going forward in the winter.

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