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Just put bees in a heated shed Don't know if the weather gets nice if I should open up the doors to leave them fly?
 

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Just put bees in a heated shed Don't know if the weather gets nice if I should open up the doors to leave them fly?
Ian Steppler in Miami Manitoba has great videos on YouTube about indoor wintering. He is very particular about humidity, ventilation and temperature. He also blacks out light. Once they are in, they do not come out until spring. A Canadian Beekeepers Blog is his YouTube channel.
 

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Boogie, where are you located? Indoor wintering of hives is usually reserved for areas that see extreme cold. Also, I believe that Ian cools his bee sheds because the bees produce too much heat. Best is right around 40°F. In the US north, most people just insulate the hives and are done with it. If you have days during the winter you think the bees may be able to fly, I doubt it gets cold enough to even require that.
 

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Ian Steppler in Miami Manitoba has great videos on YouTube about indoor wintering. He is very particular about humidity, ventilation and temperature. He also blacks out light. Once they are in, they do not come out until spring. A Canadian Beekeepers Blog is his YouTube channel.
Not quite true. This year it got to warm a few days after he had them in, so they all came out again, and went back in a few days later.

To successfully winter indoors it's important to keep them in total darkness, and cold enough they dont start breaking cluster. I know a few folks on the prairies that winter indoors, none of them heat the building, all have put significant work into making sure it stays cool enough by circulating in outside air that's very cold. The goal is to keep the temp in the barn in the range of 4C, and once it creeps up to around 8C, they are going to be hauling the bees back outside.
 

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in the past there were some canadian beeks on here, use this thread Ian posted much information about how to do it, look up posts from some of the other canadian beeks for information. CO2 levels with Indoor Wintering Honeybees
thank you very much
Boogie, where are you located? Indoor wintering of hives is usually reserved for areas that see extreme cold. Also, I believe that Ian cools his bee sheds because the bees produce too much heat. Best is right around 40°F. In the US north, most people just insulate the hives and are done with it. If you have days during the winter you think the bees may be able to fly, I doubt it gets cold enough to even require that.
I'm in Northwest Ohio I prepared the hives for outside storage last year and lost them all.
 

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Thanks to all that replied, the shed stays between 38 to 42 . I just put them in this morning and it's 4:00 and they are still upset so I thought I would wait till they calm down and not buzzing as loud before I remove the obstacles that are plugging their entrance and top vent hole. I will close it up and leave it that way for a week then check them at night with a red light if all is well I'll leave them go for a month and check them again.
Thanks to all, if anymore thoughts please share them I've only had bees for two years and constantly learning.
 

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Boogie, if you are in Ohio, your bees did NOT freeze to death. I would look at other causes for colonies to not make it through winter. Inadequate moisture control measures (wet bees are dead bees) and starvation are the most common ones that are not varroa mite related. When was your last mite treatment and what did you use?
 
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Boogie, if you are in Ohio, your bees did NOT freeze to death. I would look at other causes for colonies to not make it through winter. Inadequate moisture control measures (wet bees are dead bees) and starvation are the most common ones that are not varroa mite related. When was your last mite treatment and what did you use?
I used a honey super on top that had two inches of wood chips in it and on top of the wood chips I had 10lbs of sugar with a tunnel running through the wood chips so they could get to the sugar plus they each had about 40lbs of honey mixed with the brood, at the start of winter they were not real strong hives but I didn't they were to bad. I opened them in the spring and both were dead and both were clustered in the bottom super and stuck together very disheartening. So I thought I would try something different.
 

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One of the cool things about being a beekeeper is that you can try different approaches to solving problems. It is a lifelong learning experience.

Do you recall how much honey and pollen was left in the hive when you opened it, and did they have brood? I have lost several hives due to them starving on brood in the early springtime. For me, that is early March. The cluster will not leave the brood to chill and will starve, even though food stores may be just inches away. Making sure the hives are in full sun at this time of the year is important as the thermal radiation will heat the hive interior enough to allow the bees to move about when outside temps are still near freezing.
 

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At least half was left. It was a strange winter we were golfing in January then it got very cold fast
 

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How did you manage for varroa last year? And what did you do differently in that regard this year?
 

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I did not last year, this year I fogged them 3 times in October. I did an alcohol test on them last year and found hardly any but should have treated them anyway.
 

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My guess is that last year's bees died of varrosis. This year, October is a bit late for treatment, but they may have a chance.

Personally, I would put them back outside. But then, I know nothing about indoor overwintering.

Best to you, I will look forward to hearing how it goes, and learning more.
 

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Not quite true. This year it got to warm a few days after he had them in, so they all came out again, and went back in a few days later.
I saw the video about taking them back out but didn’t feel it material to mention it. Geez.
 

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heated to what temp?
can you make it "Dark"

GG
Our temp has been holding between 26 to 34 degrees outside but with no heater turned on yet they keep it 12 degrees higher than outside with just their body heat and it's completely dark inside. I'm a little worried because it's supposed to be 50° out next week.
 

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Our temp has been holding between 26 to 34 degrees outside but with no heater turned on yet they keep it 12 degrees higher than outside with just their body heat and it's completely dark inside. I'm a little worried because it's supposed to be 50° out next week.
IF it is completely dark, they "should" just come out to the entrance then go back in.
My comment was somewhat about this event, days that are warmer than 45 would have a fairly warm interior temp.
if a window is present they will be on it trying to fly.

Is there a way to vent in the top area of the building AND not let light in?
May need AC. :)

Also be very careful in spring, they may brood up at the +(12 -15) degrees and then you move them out and they chill.
good attempt for over wintering, you will likely learn a bunch.

I use a shed , with reduced light, and get maybe + 10 degrees and a roof for staying dry, So I am 1/2 way to where you are.
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GG
 

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Very nice setup your creating, my latest idea I opened up the doors since it's 30° out right now and I'm just going to leave the doors open because it was getting way too warm inside that shed if it gets warm enough that they can fly hopefully they'll come back into their hives by themselves and then when it gets down to the point where it doesn't get above freezing anymore I'll just shut the doors. If they fly do you think they'll come back to the hive now?
 
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