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Author Topic: overwintering-3 quick questions.  (Read 616 times)
derrick1p1
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« on: August 06, 2008, 04:47:07 PM »

Now that fall is around the corner, I'm thinking about overwintering.

-Most of my hives are deeps with 1-2 med. on top, with brood in all boxes and going strong. 

-couple of hives are in 2 mediums only, with brood and doing well.

-Neither hives have lots of stores.  They seem to be eating stores and replacing with brood. 

? Are 2 mediums enough for smaller hives?
? Should I be feeding heavily at this point?
? Or would that encourage more brood rearing rather than increasing stores?
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #1 on: August 06, 2008, 09:01:24 PM »

>? Are 2 mediums enough for smaller hives?

It depends on the size of the cluster.  A cluster the size of a basketball (on a cold day) probably needs about three mediums or two deeps.  Smaller could get by with less.

>? Should I be feeding heavily at this point?

Probably not until the fall flow is over.  It's just starting here.

>? Or would that encourage more brood rearing rather than increasing stores?

Both is a good thing in the fall.  They need young bees to get through the winter and they need stores.  But there's no point if there is still a fall flow going on.  If there is no fall flow but rather a dearth or after a hard freeze creates the fall dearth, then I'd feed IF they are light.  A strong Italian hive (large cluster), around here, needs to weigh about 120 to 150 pounds going into winter.
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Michael Bush
My website:  bushfarms.com/bees.htm
My book:  ThePracticalBeekeeper.com
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