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I've still got 2 feet of snow on the ground, and have not had a day above 35 since December. Consequently, I have not done any winter inspections, on my five hives.

According to bloom dates I was told, this weekend will put me about 6 weeks out from the dandelion start. I want to put some pollen patties on and check for honey stores. If any hives are running out will do some emergency feeding.
It’s going to be a pain getting thru the snow, but I can check this weekend. However, the temps are only going to be max 39-40deg. Think I am okay to put patties on – or should I wait a week until warmer weather?

Tks
 

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The weather may be fine for a quick look into the hives if it is not raining or windy. That should be sufficient to see if they still have feed. Hefting the hive a little will give an idea, especially if you have an empty one to heft beforehand for comparison.

If you are still six weeks from first pollen, it is IMO, still too early to feed patties or anything. I think three weeks is about right for an early start.

The best thing that bees can do now, if there is nothing outside for them, is to stay quiet and wait.

As soon as they get active, their life expectancy shortens, so feeding anything that is not necessary is not a good idea.
 

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Carefully opening the hive with as little disturbance from cracking the cover(breaking propolis seal) open will be ok. You may need to use a little smoke. If they are at the verge of starvation they will be more active then you expect so have the smoker lit and ready. What you don't want to do when it is too cold is start pulling frames from the center of the cluster. Taking off the cover and providing feed/supplements is fine in cool/cold weather.
 

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If all you were going to do it pop the top open and put in a pollen patty - it would probably be o.k. Personally, I would not do any more than that at those temps.

If you have a reasonable idea of what a hive weighs - you can lift the back of the hive up and feel if they have significant stores. If you don't have a good idea of weights, aseemble a dummy hive with certain amounts of weight added (dumb bells or whatnot) to get an idea of what it is like.
 

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"According to bloom dates I was told, this weekend will put me about 6 weeks out from the dandelion start."

Maybe for dandelions, but good pollen [some nectar] will be coming in around here from willows, alders, silver maple and a few other early blooms--crocus? If it warms up a bit, toward the end of the last week of March--3-1/2 weeks? If it stays cold; by the first week of April--4-4 1/2 weeks. Should be about the same for Ohio?
 

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"How much is enough to get them into spring".

For Ohio, I think 15 to 18 lbs. would be plenty. I don't remember how much a frame of honey [medium or deep] weighs right now. It won't be long [2-3 weeks] till you can start putting in syrup in a feeder that stays fairly warm, like a baggie or bucket on top of frames. "I see that my bees are using 1/3 lb a day, so from that it looks as if 15 lbs should get them there." Feb. 13 2010.>> http://www.beesource.com/forums/showthread.php?t=237877&highlight=pounds+honey+winter
 
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