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Author Topic: hive loss so far  (Read 5055 times)

Offline kathyp

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hive loss so far
« on: January 14, 2010, 05:43:25 PM »
someone was keeping track of winter hive loss.  since it was warm enough for them to fly today, i can see that i have lost 3.  2 were expected and the other was not a complete surprise.  it did not build up properly over last year, so it went into winter kind of iffy.
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline John Schwartz

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2010, 06:12:57 PM »
hey Kathy! was fun to see the girls flying today as well.
--John Schwartz :)

Offline harvey

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2010, 07:59:57 PM »
Kathy,   How warm does it have to be for the bee's to fly?   

Offline kathyp

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2010, 09:18:25 PM »
depends.  i have had them fly on a sunny day in the 30s with snow on the ground.  most of the time, it needs to be above 45 and they really fly at 50.  sun on the  hive and no wind will bring them  out at a lower temp.
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline Pond Creek Farm

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2010, 10:12:38 PM »
lost two.  one expected the other not.  I must learn the value of fall feeding, and to start early.
Brian

Offline HAB

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2010, 10:28:30 PM »
I've lost two possibly three. All that cold rain was rough on them. One the wind blew off the top and they got soaked, other two were a sad surprise. :'( :'( :'(

Offline GaryMinckler

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2010, 10:38:07 PM »
I expected to see bees flying today as well but didn't.  It was only about 35 degrees but has been brutally cold.  I've lost 1 or 2 and possibly more to come. 

Offline kathyp

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #7 on: January 14, 2010, 11:02:33 PM »
35 is still pretty low.  wait for a warmer day and see what happens.
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline wouldliketobee

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2010, 03:13:25 AM »
I lost my one and only hive things looked good until a couple of weeks ago that cold snap along with all the rain we had last year made my first year tough, I thought they had plenty of stores , but it appears they didn't, I'm ready to try again this year.

Offline TwT

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2010, 06:46:28 AM »
getting close to 60 degree's today, I haven't inspected yet but while today and I am going to feed all mine
THAT's ME TO THE LEFT JUST 5 YEARS FROM NOW!!!!!!!!

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Offline Finski

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2010, 08:18:12 AM »
Kathy,   How warm does it have to be for the bee's to fly?  

In Finland cleansing flight happens when it is sunny, calm and 41F warm. Then bees are able to rise up from snow.

In spring bees bring water from ground if sun heats some soil spot. It happens in 35F.

Bees may fly even in frost weather but they are not able to return to home.

**********

I wonder your losses, what are the reasons? I have 30 hives and probably I expect to loose one or not at all. I see it in March.
Normal dead rate is 0,5/ winter. Last winter the hive had laying dronelayer and hive reared broo whole winter.

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Offline Scadsobees

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2010, 09:03:13 AM »
lost 1 out of 9 so far.  Not the one I expected but they obviously had not built up in the fall, tiny cluster that froze.  Oh well.

Of all my hives, some will fly when it is sunny and 25, I don't think they make it back, but I can tell they are alive by the dead bees in the snow in front of the hive.  Some hives won't fly till it is warmer.  Some will fly when cloudy and in the high 30's, some won't.

Rick
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Offline treebee

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #12 on: January 15, 2010, 09:51:14 AM »
  I lost one late fall cutout yesterday when I went to feed. My big hive looked good with a few bees dead out front I think from clean out on the warm day.  Pretty sad It's my first year and fist lost I had stethascoped them last week and could here a buzz but I didn't open them... Does anyone keep bees over winter in a high tunnel or green house.  John
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Offline USC Beeman in TN

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #13 on: January 15, 2010, 10:22:46 AM »
Found 1 dead out at a farm I keep some of my bees on 12/18.  Went out there yesterday and found 2 more dead hive.  One of them had a huge nest with a large family of mice in it.  The were in the top super where I only had 4 or 5 frames of Permacomb filled with sugar syrup and back filled with dry sugar over newspaper.  I put that super on top of another hive that had the cluster in the top super at the top back left corner.  This should help them if they decide to move upwards instead of to the right where there are still more honey stores.

The hives that were not flying, I did see clusters.  Will need to add a gallon can of 2:1 SW on top of a couple of them.

Have 10 hives at the house.  8 of the 10 I same some flying.  In fact, several of them were very active in flying and carrying off their dead sisters. 1 of the 2 that wasn't flying I feel sure is clustered because I saw dead bees that had been put out on the landing board several days ago.  The 2nd one doesn't get much light because it faces a huge hackberry tree and doesn't get much sun this time of the year.

Have another hive at anothe locatin and they were flying but were in the top super and will need a gallon of 2:1 soon.  If I can get through till it gets warmer without anymore losses, I will feel like I came through great.  Most of these hives were cutouts, trapouts, swarms or splits.  The splits seem to be doing well.  Lost 3 of my 4 packages back in late summer.  The one nuc I purchased seems to be hanging in there.


So currently I stand at 10 +1+7 = 18 hives
De Colores,
Ken

Offline sc-bee

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #14 on: January 15, 2010, 11:26:35 AM »
We have had unusually extended cold weather for our area. I just peaked under a couple of covers a couple of weeks ago (it was in the teens at night and not out of the low to mid 30's during day). I feared I had feed issues from what I say and the possibility of several losses.

I inspected yesterday and at this point all are alive (10 full colonies and 4 nucs). We should begin to see a Red maple bloom in about 3 weeks if the trend follows the last three years.
John 3:16

Offline kathyp

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #15 on: January 15, 2010, 11:52:20 AM »
Quote
I wonder your losses, what are the reasons?

two were late swarms that never did to well.  they were from pollination hives, i'm sure.  the 3rd had struggled for a couple of year and even with requeening had not done so well.  it was an old cutout.  i am going to strip out the foundation in that one and start over.

i have been concentrating on collecting feral hives.  these have either come from established hives that i have removed, or from swarms from feral hives.  these bees have done well and have required no treatment for 3 years. 

since this is a hobby for me, i can experiment a bit.  so far, i have been pleased with the results.
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline charmd2

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #16 on: January 15, 2010, 12:26:36 PM »
Wednesday I got to check into mine..   Went from 9 in November to currently 5.   None of the losses were a surprise.  Should have combined.  I'm actually expecting to loose two more..  :(    Hoping next summer we get a much better oppertunity to build up,  7 of my 9 never really got going last summer. 
Charla Hinkle

Offline danno

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #17 on: January 15, 2010, 02:39:13 PM »
Been having a Jan thaw these last 2 days.  Temps in the mid 30's and calm.   Snow is finally melted back enough to go check without snow shoes.  My snowmobile is broken.  2 dead out of 30 so far.  Feb is the month i really worry about.  Even early March.  If I can make it through with 90% alive I will be one happy Beek.   I have my sugar boards poured and a 50# block of fondant ready for a warm day peek next month

Offline kathyp

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #18 on: January 15, 2010, 02:45:51 PM »
Quote
Feb is the month i really worry about.  Even early March

me too.  those are the danger months here.  it warms up just enough for them to go through all their stores with nothing for them to collect.
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline D Coates

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #19 on: January 15, 2010, 04:10:42 PM »
So far (knock on wood) I've still got all of my 9 hives and 5 nucs.  One Hive and Nuc had begun to tap into the granulated sugar stores I put on them.  I will have to keep checking on all of their stores when the temp allows it.
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Offline msully

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #20 on: January 15, 2010, 04:21:48 PM »
I've still got my 4 hives and 1 nuc.  One of the hives was a little light and the nuc is an experiment.  I've had sugar on those two most of the winter and have started putting sugar on the rest.  I may put some pollen patties on soon, but haven't decided for sure yet...
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Offline USC Beeman in TN

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #21 on: January 15, 2010, 04:32:08 PM »
It in the upper 50's today and the 2 hives that were not active yesterday were not active today.  Lost both of them.  Both lost because I screwed up.  Somethings you can't control but when I personally screw up and kill the bees I really get irked at myself.  But I can tell you one thing...........those 2 mistakes won't happen again!!!
De Colores,
Ken

Offline danno

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #22 on: January 15, 2010, 04:40:49 PM »
It in the upper 50's today and the 2 hives that were not active yesterday were not active today.  Lost both of them.  Both lost because I screwed up.  Somethings you can't control but when I personally screw up and kill the bees I really get irked at myself.  But I can tell you one thing...........those 2 mistakes won't happen again!!!
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Offline leechmann

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #23 on: January 15, 2010, 04:58:59 PM »
Here in Northern MN, temps were in the mid 30's today. Being that we've had stretches of 25 to 30 degrees below zero, for a week or two at a time, I've been very concerned about my bees. This is the first year of bee keeping for me, and I had 4 hives that were promising going into the winter. I just checked the hives and two of them are still alive, seem very active. I had wrapped the hives with tar paper so I have limited acess to see the bees. I pulled the cover off and looked through the center hole in the inner cover. I could see bees moving about in two of the hives. One of the other hive that looks like it's finished, the bees had come up into the hole in the inner cover hole, just packed in there, and that's were they died. Not sure what happened there. The forth hive is a mystery. I can't see the cluster, dead or alive, it's away from the center hole, so I can see anything.

I have to say that I'm very happy to have the two hives stilll aliive, with the weather we've been having. 

Thanks to all of you folks for helping out, giving us newbies advise. This forum is a great source for information. Thanks again.

Leechmann 

Offline kathyp

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #24 on: January 15, 2010, 05:09:30 PM »
Quote
may put some pollen patties on soon, but haven't decided for sure yet...

don't rush the pollen patties.  you don't want to encourage to much brood rearing early.  also, we have early pollen here.  it starts in February.  you may not need them, but i would not put them on earlier than mid February unless we have an unusual warm up.  you will want to watch the stores between now and first flow.  as the days get longer and we have some warm ones, they'll go through what they have stored very quickly. 
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline TwT

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #25 on: January 15, 2010, 07:07:35 PM »
well as I feared I knew that one yards that had some light hives going into the winter and I thought I could nurse them through but I ended up losing 2 hives and a nuc, about 4 other hives looked like they could make it but never know until the spring, I feed all hives and they were taking it so we will see.
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Offline BEEMAN

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #26 on: January 15, 2010, 08:48:33 PM »
So far this winter with the rain and extended cold weather I still have all 15 of my hives. With the unusual cold temps down to 19 degrees and below freezing for about a week I was expecting the worst. Checked a number of them today and even with the rain, wind, and cool temps the girls were out flying. Not in full force but some were out working and bringing in a golden pollen. Good work girls.

Offline slaphead

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #27 on: January 15, 2010, 11:05:22 PM »
Lost 2 out of 6 so far with a third a cause for worry.  Have sugar boards on and they're going through those supplies fast in this warm weather. Roll on spring.

SH
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Offline David LaFerney

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #28 on: January 15, 2010, 11:07:44 PM »
My 1 1/2 hives were both flying nicely to day.  I put dry sugar on both of them in November and the smaller one has used about 10 pounds now.  They've eaten a hole about 3 inches across up through the middle of the pile.   I'm thinking maybe I should put another piece of paper in there and fill it back up while the weather is decent.

 
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Offline heaflaw

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #29 on: January 16, 2010, 05:51:12 PM »
I lost 1 out of 18.  They still had a lot of  honey but were 6 inches away from it in a small cluster.  It's been very cold for 2 weeks and I guess they couldn't move that far.  I had fed them heavily in late fall because I had been concerned about them.  I wasn't too surprised.  Only 1 out of 18 is good, but there is a long time to go until spring.

Offline Shawn

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #30 on: January 16, 2010, 05:54:08 PM »
Only have three and two seem to being doing good. Lots of activity from the two during the warmer days but Im affraid the third might not make it. Sitll see bees coming and going but not like the other two.

Offline bassman1977

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #31 on: January 16, 2010, 06:19:25 PM »
Finally got a chance to check on them today.  Home yard I'm 1 for 2.  So I cleaned up the mess from the one.  Obvious starvation although the bottom most box was completely full of honey.  I guess they moved up too soon.  The other hive was just starting to finish up the upper box so I threw the bottom box from the other one on top.  Hopefully that will get them through the remainder of winter.  The out yard I didn't get to, but I had my "landlord" check them out.  He said there was lots of activity from one hive and none from the other.  I suspect another deadout.  I'll probably go out there this week sometime and throw another honey filled box on top of the live one.  Sucks.  I guess I'm buying nucs instead of boxes this year.
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Offline davedill

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #32 on: January 16, 2010, 06:53:45 PM »
This is my first winter with my one hive.  cracked it open today and they look good.  There is still a lot of honey in the upper box and the ball was half in both deeps.  It was a new package and they only filled 8 frames in both boxes.    so far so good but I will keep a close eye on them as spring comes.

Offline kathyp

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #33 on: January 16, 2010, 07:02:49 PM »
i have to revise my post.  the one that i thought was lost was looking pretty lively today.  good reminder not to pop the top unless you are SURE there are no bees in there!!  for some reason they do not fly at the lower temps that bring out the others.  they are probably still weak, but they are in there.....
glad i didn't pick the box up to carry to the barn, as was my intention :-)
.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville

Offline tillie

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #34 on: January 16, 2010, 07:55:47 PM »
Yesterday it was in the 50s- 60 after a solid week or more of below freezing all day, every day.  I watched my hives and was so sad to see no bees coming out of my oldest and strongest hive while the other two were cavorting in the warm (relatively) air. 

I made sugar syrup for all three hives and opened the nonactive one first.  There were all the bees, alive and happy and clustered in the top box.  They were using the shim around the syrup baggie as a top entrance rather than the hive entrance. 

I am so relieved, but we still sometimes lose hives in the next couple of months to cold snaps so I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

Linda T wet and rainy in Atlanta
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Offline woodchopper

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #35 on: January 16, 2010, 11:29:09 PM »
We lost 2 of our 3 hives here in MA. about a month ago because of a cold snap we had after a long warm spell. I hadn't checked their reserves yet because I was afraid to go in when it was under 45 degrees. They died of starvation.
 I checked the remaining hive today because it was warm enough and was surprised to see they had died even though there was plenty of honey very close to them. Hope our hives in Maine are doing better.
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Offline Rodni73

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #36 on: January 17, 2010, 12:18:16 AM »
Hi all

I have two hives.  Both hives are alives and kicking! we had a sunny day today and they came out in force. However, last year I lost a hive in December even though they had 30 pounds of stores because of a veroa kill that I did not discover until it was too late.

This year I took the following precausions that made a difference to me:

1-I fed them from Late August to mid november and I did not harvest any honey because they both started from nucs last may.  I think they should have enough stores.

2-I placed granulated sugars on top of the inner cover just in case

3-I insulated both hives with black hive covers and then an outer bleu tarp purshaced from home depot

4-I placed an upper entrance for the bess and opened the telescoping covers about an inch to allow moister to escape on Both hives.

5-Checked for veroa mites and medicated early

6-So far I think I am lucky.

Offline USC Beeman in TN

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #37 on: January 17, 2010, 12:55:01 AM »
I lost 1 out of 18.  They still had a lot of  honey but were 6 inches away from it in a small cluster.  It's been very cold for 2 weeks and I guess they couldn't move that far.  I had fed them heavily in late fall because I had been concerned about them.  I wasn't too surprised.  Only 1 out of 18 is good, but there is a long time to go until spring.

Is it possible they died from tracheal mites?  Was told that was a sign but I don't remember if they would have their heads in the comb or not.
De Colores,
Ken

Offline AR Beekeeper

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Re: hive loss so far
« Reply #38 on: January 17, 2010, 09:16:48 AM »
I usually over winter 50 colonies.  Four years ago I started requeening all my colonies in late July and slow feeding 1 gallon of syrup during August to stimulate brood rearing.  All colonies with less than 1 full medium and 4 deep frames of honey in the brood nest are fed in early October until they have that amount of stores. 

Since I began this management practice I have lost a total of 2 colonies, both last winter, both of which refused to take syrup during August and October.  Before I began to requeen and stimulative feed I regularly lost 1 out of each 12 colonies overwintered.  Most losses come in late February or March so I am not out of the woods yet but so far no losses this winter.

Here in north Arkansas moisture is not a problem and I take no measurers to control it even with colonies with solid bottom boards.  All of my full sized colonies have screened bottoms but some nucs have solids.  Our temps are usually 20 to mid 50's but this winter in late December and early January we have had lows of 2 and highs of 28.  Now things are back to normal and all colonies are flying and taking care of business.