At the very least I would try hard to get the Russians as a starting stock (hoping to at least get some close resemblance to them).I've decided to convert a shed to an indoor, temperature/humidity controlled wintering facility. One of my problems is that I now feel that I should probably treat for mites and possibly Nosema, yet I have no plan, nor do I have the expertise to confidently formulate one.
Previously, I have wintered my hives as 2 or 3 deeps outdoors using various "methods" and sometimes it worked and sometimes it didn't. There would eventually be a year where it didn't, and new packages would be purchased and the cycle start anew.
This years $230 packages arrived, bringing with them a huge number of hangers-on from their little jaunt in California. Once again, I simply dusted them with powdered sugar and called it good. They did great! But I suspect they are in for a big surprise in a month or so and could use all the help I can give them. 6 months in a box is hard!
I need suggestions for so many things and would also like some feedback on some ideas I have.