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I remember our first dead out colony very well, third winter and it was totally my fault. Where I had placed it on a little stand was right under a large tree. Heavy snowfall that accumulated on the branches, then eventually a big clump of heavy wet snow came down and knocked the hive off the stand. At first we were quite perturbed about the, but then i got to thinking and realized, some deadouts not always a bad thing.

When swarm season comes around, the mantra is 'give them space'. Well, now you have boxes with drawn comb to use for 'space'.

For handling the boxes, I wouldn't do a lot special. I'd take them from where they are, put them in a dry place to store, preferably some place wax moths cannot find them. When your existing colonies are building up in spring like gangbusters, take one of these boxes and put it on top of the growing colony, let them grow into it.
 
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