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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Newbie, first year. I am running three deep boxes after I combined a weak, queenless colony with a prospering colony back in late Summer. I have fed 2:1 sugar aggressively since stores were low. I THINK my stores are good. Right now my status is as follows;

Bottom Deep - full of bees, a little brood, seems healthy
Middle Deep - maybe 1/3 + way full of capped and uncapped syrup
Top Deep - 90% full of capped syrup/honey

I am going to winterize my hive this weekend. Should I leave the deeps in their current configuration? Or should I switch the top two so the cluster is closer to the highest concentration of food?
 

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Aylett, VA 10-frame double deep Langstroth
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The bees put that food where they are going to need it. A top box full of capped stores is perfect.
 

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My 2 cents:
If it were me I'd pull that 1/3 full middle deep off and use the full frames from it to replace the poor frames in the 90% full top deep.
Go into winter with a double deep, bees in bottom deep an the now 100% full of stores top deep.
 

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My 2 cents:
If it were me I'd pull that 1/3 full middle deep off and use the full frames from it to replace the poor frames in the 90% full top deep.
Go into winter with a double deep, bees in bottom deep an the now 100% full of stores top deep.
I think this would be my approach as well. In general, I do not like doing late season major changes. As JWPalmer correctly points out bees usually do the "right thing". In this case, you claim it is a late season combine, so the bees may not have had the time to get things perfectly configured, which is why I tend to agree with clyderoad's approach.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Temps here in NJ are not supposed to get out of the 40s for the next two weeks. I am hesitant to make any major configuration changes right now. Again, I'm a total newbie but I'm leaning towards closing it up as is. Any additional thoughts based on temperatures? Is an extensive shuffling of frames a good idea this late?
 

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Then leave them alone. If your mite levels are low, the colony should come thru. If you have a high mite count, it just doesn't matter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I had mid level mite counts in early September. I treated with Formic Pro followed up by Apivar per my local bee guru. I should be okay on mites, but I honestly didn't get to check counts after treatment. I am going to wrap and strap the hive on Saturday, call it good and hope for the best.

Thanks for the comments and advice everyone!

Alan in NJ
 

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In my neck of the woods the temperatures for the last week have been abnormally low and it's been wet, there is still time to do any manipulations on the warm
days that are sure to follow. This aint the mountains or high plains.
The weekend after Thanksgiving is forecast to be in the 50's, extending into the first week of December.
In any case good luck, don't forget the mouse guards.
 
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