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Hello everyone.
I am in CT and proud to say have had a great winter survival. All my hives have shims at the top, that is how I have been feeding them, apart from that haven’t opened the hives yet. I hope everyone agrees this has been a warm year. Temperature here fluctuates in 40s and 50s some days are very windy; we have had some upper 60 days also. My bees have been bringing lot pollen every chance they get.
I like to know when is the good time (temperature wise) to open the hives, move them to the lower brood box and do the first winter cleanup, are they still under winter cluster? Nighttime still in 30s, I hate to disturb them if I don’t need to or get there too late?
Thank you
DP
 

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If they are bringing in forage, remove the shims. I kept mine on too long and a few hives built a bunch of drone comb attached to the inner cover.
 

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Congrats on a successful winter. I will let someone in your area answer the timing of your reversing. Yes, they are still clustering just not full time and maybe not as tight. I look at the long term forecast. Optimal is pollen and nectar coming in and feeding stopped. I do not want to reverse boxes until nights are in the 50's. I like it warmer before I change the position of any inner frames with brood and stores. They seem to know what to do. You can break it apart and clean the bottom board on any nice day they are flying and you are in a tee shirt (before you suit up). Of course, there are no rules and many exceptions. If you know its a problem and what to do about it, fix it. If unsure it is almost always better to do nothing and get some advice here or with an experienced local beekeeper. In fact, the most valuable lesson I have learned so far is that waiting or doing nothing is usually the best option J
 
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