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Poll
Question: How many colonies (full or nucs) have you lost this winter ?  (Voting closed: June 05, 2010, 09:11:57 AM)
0 - 36 (35%)
1 - 22 (21.4%)
2 - 17 (16.5%)
3 - 7 (6.8%)
4 - 6 (5.8%)
5 - 3 (2.9%)
6+ - 7 (6.8%)
10+ - 3 (2.9%)
20+ - 2 (1.9%)
50+ - 0 (0%)
Total Voters: 101


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Author Topic: Winter Losses 2009/2010 Poll  (Read 3660 times)
Two Bees
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« Reply #20 on: March 08, 2010, 09:20:33 AM »

I attended our State's Spring Conference this weekend and one of the veteran beeks was teaching a workshop on wintering hives.  He has 62 years of experience and lost his strongest hive this winter that had plenty of stores.   He said that "sometimes things just happen!"
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msully
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« Reply #21 on: March 08, 2010, 03:56:29 PM »

4 hives and 1 nuc all made it through the winter alive!!!

2 hives already have 10+ frames of brood, looks like I'll have more nuc's for sale than I planned!

Winter was very mild in the Pacific NW this year.
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heaflaw
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« Reply #22 on: March 08, 2010, 07:32:24 PM »

Lost 1 out of 18.  Cluster was too small to move to the side to get to honey stores.  My fault: I should have given them a couple of frames of brood in the fall or combined or made sure honey was above the cluster or maybe wrapped the hive so it would warm during the day so they could move to the honey.
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vermmy35
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« Reply #23 on: March 08, 2010, 09:27:23 PM »

I have just the one hive, and as of Saturday the girls where going gang busters.  I ordered some more Carniolan's in February so this year I will defiantly have three hive unless this hive has a collapse which don't look like it will happen. 
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annette
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« Reply #24 on: March 08, 2010, 11:24:37 PM »

So far 4 going into winter, and 4 coming out of winter. Cross fingers as more cold weather coming this week.

I think they will all make it.



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PeeVee
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« Reply #25 on: March 08, 2010, 11:35:19 PM »

Two going into winter. One now. The deadout was a package. The survivor (so far) was a cut out. I'm pretty sure the dead hive was starvation. I will be doing a more complete investigation in a few days. For now I secured the hive.
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sc-bee
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« Reply #26 on: March 08, 2010, 11:50:35 PM »

I checked mine today. It was 70 degrees. Ten hives and 4 nucs. All had alot more brood than I expected. Also seeing a little drone brood. Should explode soon.
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John 3:16
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« Reply #27 on: March 09, 2010, 07:16:26 AM »

I lost 6 of 30 colonies.  Almost all were frozen out.  I left on average 80 pounds of honey per colony.  Even my nucs (doubles) had good stored.  We had VERY cold weather here in Southwestern Ohio.  The previous year I lost one colony.

I do not treat.  I have sen toff bee samples to Beltsville and nothing to report.  5 of the six colonies were within 1" of honey and had several thousand bees.  All but one were from 2009 packages.  The one that was not was declining and I think was robbed out by its sister colony.  This was my furthest outyard and I admit that my neglect may have caused this.  All swarms caught this year, splits from mutts, and three of my original no treat colonies are doing well, good numbers, small brood pattern the size of the cluster.  Just put patties on to stimulate since they all have good stores still (relative to the season).

Hoping to double up again this year, mainly with later splits this time and more swarms.
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Richard Stewart
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Two Bees
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« Reply #28 on: March 09, 2010, 01:44:34 PM »

All six hives have made it so far!
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Somerford
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« Reply #29 on: March 10, 2010, 03:50:31 PM »

I have just read on another forum that there have been losses of 90% on Vancouver Island this winter.

Not good at all !

S
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JP
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« Reply #30 on: March 10, 2010, 09:30:57 PM »

Had a peek at my main beeyard today it was nice and warm. Of my three yards 31 have survived, lost 5.

Leaving a lot more feed this season has been the difference.


...JP
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DBoire
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« Reply #31 on: March 10, 2010, 09:58:03 PM »

Lost one of the three, I haven't done a post-mortum yet, but a quick look shows the top two mediums with 17 full frames of what I suppose is my feed from last fall.  I blocked the hive up and feed the other two.
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Jack
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« Reply #32 on: March 11, 2010, 11:23:20 AM »

Nine hives going into winter. Five left at the moment however one is marginal. We had a nonexistent flow last year and had to feed heavily to get them through. My OH consumed all their supplies and I fed them throughout the winter. Looks like they will be fine. We need a good year to keep up the momentum and hopefully make some increases.
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« Reply #33 on: March 11, 2010, 03:00:34 PM »

This poll is nice, although in itself it tells very little - ideally polls of this type should be based on percentage, than we would see how relatively mild or devastating losses are.

Example, if I choose one colony lost, it doesn't sound like much, but after 74 inches of snow this year with out a day above 30 degrees for 3 months (so I never saw the ground from mid December until last week) my one hive took a dump and I didn't just have 1 lost hive, I had 100% loss. That is why loss percentage is so important.

It is interesting to hear the stories (as sad as many are) but statistically, someone with 1 hive or someone with 3000 hives aren't represented well by colony count alone. Just a thought for any future polls Smiley

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Somerford
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« Reply #34 on: March 11, 2010, 04:12:56 PM »

I did consider using a % instead but for everyone to work it out prior to posting might well have caused errors / fraught language ! Therefore I went for a colony loss in numbers instead - so far it is interesting that 40% or 2/5th of beekeepers (rounded up) have had no colony loss this winter out of 70 odd postings

regards

S
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Tyro
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« Reply #35 on: March 12, 2010, 07:47:02 AM »

What the heck are all you people talking about!  It is STILL winter here!  We had 4 inches of snow yesterday and last year it snowed on JUNE 6!

To date, I have lost 3 of 6.  The three lost were the weakest going in.  Two starved out.  The last one was more directly my fault (which is most upsetting).  I put dry sugar on them because they were out of food - but didn't notice that the newspaper was covering the entire top.  As a result, there was little/no ventilation, they got wet.  Two weeks later when I checked, they were dead.  It happened with a second hive also, but I caught it and cleaned it up.  Hopefully, they recovered.

For what it is worth, of my remaining hives, the two strongest both had screened bottom boards all winter.  The hives with solid bottoms died first.  All other equipment (lids, hive wraps, etc.) were the same (populations going in did differ).

Next year, they will all have screened bottom boards.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2010, 02:32:57 PM by Tyro » Logged
Natalie
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« Reply #36 on: March 12, 2010, 11:23:17 AM »

Someone mentioned overwintering with screened bottom boards on.
I did and all of them are still alive.
The only hive I lost was not from winter, it was the fall and it was a hive that I got late season, it went queenless and kept rejecting new queens. I would put the cage in, they would release her, she would lay for a short time and then be killed.
It drove me nuts and I actually didn't really care for their genetics anyway so it wasn't a big loss since they were a headache for me.

So having said that, the winter although it was cold and I left the screened bottom boards on did not do in any of my hives.
Being that these colonies were new last year and I wasn't sure how much food they needed to overwinter on I also left them all their honey and figure I can always collect it in the spring if there is any left.
I see a ton of bees coming in and out of their hives on the warm days.
I was concerned about two of my langs because I didn't think they were going into winter with a big enough colony but kept my fingers crossed and they made it.

I responded to this thread to address someone's screened bottom board question but I run 8 frame medium hives on foundationless frames, don't know if that is relevant but just to be sure I included all the facts.

I am real sorry to hear of those that lost hives, especially a bunch of hives but hopefully this spring will be much warmer and drier than last year and the colonies will be much better prepared for next winter.
Keep the faith. Smiley
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Somerford
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« Reply #37 on: March 14, 2010, 03:34:37 AM »

I also figure it would be interesting to know whether there is a greater % loss from conventional hives than eco hives or vice versa....

I might have a look at survey monkey !

regards

s
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Carriage House Farm
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« Reply #38 on: March 14, 2010, 09:37:40 AM »

All of my colonies are ZERO treatment with a combination of early and late season splits.

I purchased six packages last year.  I was converting from all mediums to double deeps and I needed as many hives drawing out wax that I could afford to purchase.  I also caught or split a dozen more colonies (swarms or from last year's survivor stock).

Of my six losses five were from the packages from the business as usual chemically kept supplier.  The single loss from the swarm/local stock was a late split.  Even my two test nucs and an august swarm made it through (so far).

None of this is scientific just my experience this last season (2209 - 2010).
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Richard Stewart
Carriage House Farm
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surjourner
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« Reply #39 on: March 14, 2010, 11:09:29 AM »

Lost 1 hive. Believe it was a combo of small hive beetles and excessively frigid cold snap we had.
They still had a little honey but it seemed to be to far away from them.
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