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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have some questions on what to do now that spring is coming. This is my first hive and their first winter, last I checked around mid February there was still movement inside. I didn't open the hive completely because it' still very cold here in New York and I didn't want to let in the cold air. One thing I did notice was piles of dead bees basically blocking the whole entrance and a few under the top cover. Typical or not?

I was wondering where to go from here, if I should start feeding them, when (temperature wise) is it ok to open it completely observe and clean things up?

Any insight on what to do after a brutally cold winter would be appreciated.

Thanks
 

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I'd love to give some advice, but I'm mostly clueless! This is only my second winter and have only one hive. I'm hoping the "girls" can take care of most issues. After a couple of warm days here, I also noted a lot of "dead" near hive opening. I saw this as a good sign, at least some survived to "bury their dead". During the heat of the day(about 50degreesF), I gave them some granulated sugar and a "winter" patty. No pollen substitute, as I didn't want a bunch of new mouths to feed long before we had natural pollen.
Hopefully someone else can offer some "spiritual advice", as I said I'm very green! memtb
 

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I'm in the same boat and clueless as well. Close to 50 degrees here in the Hudson Valley and I'm thrilled to see bees flying in and out of my first overwintered hive. I also need help on what to do next. Truth be told, I never expected the girls to live through such a brutal winter and now I'm slightly panicked. They made it this far and I would love to get them into the spring time in good shape. Any and all advice is welcome.
 

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I can only offer up some uneducated advice as this is coming out of my first winter

1). Pollen and Baggie feed 1:1. Start building up the brood nest if honey is your goal. From all the advice I've heard, you need 2 rounds of brood cycles ready to go for the beginning of the flow.

2). When you can, open up the brood nest. Lots of good threads here on that. Keep watching food stores.

3). And keep your fingers crossed the worst of the cold is over
 

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Bees dying in the winter is completely normal. At this time of year the clusters are at their smallest as new bees are just staring to be raised. The only way to feed this time of year is by giving frames of capped honey or some sort of dry sugar or a candy board.

Be cautious that assuming your hive has survived winter. I have 25 hives and lost my first 4 this week. Hives are getting very light and they are rearing brood. The bees will not break cluster to feed at the cost of chilling brood. All four hives died inches from honey.
 

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We seem to be in the final stretch. I too am nervous, both my hives are flying today, one of which I was pretty sure would not make it. I would clean out the bottom board if you haven't already (use a stick and remove the dead bees). Pick up the back of the hive to see how light it is. I believe that the hive won't take syrup till the day temps are in the 50's. I have pollen paddies and sugar on the tope bar that the bees seem to be taking. I might put out some syrup and open feed. One of my hives is much lighter than the other but don't know if it's too light or not, seems very relative and I don't really have much to compare it to. I have not pulled frames but I would say the bees have consumed up to the very top of three frames. The other frames have capped honey on top. I have considered giving them a full frame from my other hive but I have not wanted to mess with them. Daffodils have just started coming up here. My first year I did not worry this much, ignorance is bliss :eek:
 

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At what average spring temperature can one figure hives that are alive are going to make it?
So many hives seem die with bees inches from food..stuck on brood etc. if temperature is the key factor..what is the magic number?
 

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Somehow same post showed up twice!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
We had a warm day (50’s) followed by cold again, on the warm day I check the hive and they were flying....tons of action and quite noisy. Is it safe to assume that they have survived the winter?
 

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We had a warm day (50’s) followed by cold again, on the warm day I check the hive and they were flying....tons of action and quite noisy. Is it safe to assume that they have survived the winter?
Did you see brood? The hive I mentioned does not have brood, and I fear they might be queenless. It seems that it's not just the survival but the build up you have to worry about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I did not pull any frames so was unable to see if there was brood, however their population seems larger than it was in the winter.....but I could be misjudging that.
 
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