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Hello, all. I'm a first year beekeeper in southeast Iowa. I bought a Russian pkg this year, installed it and took a mere 6 gal. I also recieved a swarm from a friend. Right in the middle between mean and dosile. Anyway, I was wondering if I missed anything. I've got ventilation holes in the front of my boxes (facing south). Three sides tar papered. I've got them bulked up on 2:1 sugar syrup despite 2 very packed honey/pollen deeps. I treated for mites using ES. I had absolutely no trouble with SHB or wax moth taking over (never even saw one). Did I miss anything? Thanks for you input and post what you did as well! :D


Edit: 11/20/15

I also put on a mouse guard and did a mite check.
 

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I think you pretty much have it covered..... Only other thing I would mention is a mouse guard..... Make sure a mouse hasn't taken up residence before putting it on....;- )

Mites dealt with before winter brood - Check
Plenty of food - Check
Good ventilation - Check
Mouse Guard - ?

I also put on a shim in case I need to do an emergency feed....
 

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You say you treated for mites, but did you do a followup mite count? That's the only way to tell if your treatment is effective.

I'm WAAAAY south of you but I always do a checklist: Enough stores plus a little extra for emergencies? Wind control? Screened for mice/voles? Are the hives tight ie will they stay dry inside? Ventilated? And finally, what are my mite counts? If I've taken care of all these points, my hives usually sail through the bad weather and emerge healthy and active on the other side.

HTH

Rusty
 

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From your location, I would pay some attention to wind protection. I would also make sure you have black paper on the South side. The paper will warm the air and the bees can get out for a poo, and stay close to the wall for warmth.
Are you thinking about sugar boards and pollen for Spring feeding yet?
 

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What is ES in regards to mite treatment? What number "looks good" from a sugar roll?

Insulate the top. And it wouldn't be a bad idea to have shims ready just in case they need sugar later in the year. Did you weigh the hives?
 

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Essential oils aren't chemicals? News to me and the rest of the world. 7 in a sugar roll is probably more like 10 or 12 in an alcohol wash. Good luck this winter about 9" here and still falling.
 

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Okay, nice to know. I just got about 3in. of snow and gaining today. (11/21/15) Any suggestions on treatments welcome. Chemical free of course. :D
I just had a nasty thought! Chemical free might mean you line all the girls up and pick the mites off with a tiny pair of tweezers. LOL
By chemical free, do you mean medication free? Some of the organic options like Thymol and MAQS depend on a certain outdoor temperature, so your options are becoming limited. OAV would work. Ideally, you want to have your mite counts down by August, so you have a few generations of healthy bees going into Winter.
 
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