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Author Topic: NewNewBee winter peekaboo  (Read 1066 times)

Offline Kerimae

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NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« on: January 16, 2011, 06:26:11 PM »
Well it is 53 degrees and sunny so I thought I'd go see if I actually still have bees.  And YAY they were flying around like crazy.  What to do, what to do....I decided to take a peek under the cover and the dry sugar I had left on top (figured it would be all right because we are wet/damp in this area) was full of bees eating it up.  I added a pollen patty just because I figured it wouldn't hurt.  I also added my last jar of sugar/water because, again, I figured with these temps and no honey at all last fall, it wouldn't hurt.  Of course, feel free to correct me!

They were a bit too agitated for me to feel comfortable in looking into the brood boxes all by myself.  I did remember that bee clusters move up in winter, so I was wondering if now would be a good time to flip those brood boxes.  I decided against it and added a super instead, but had to take out 8 of the frames because of the dry sugar/patties underneath.  I left in top bars in their place just in case they wanted to start making comb at some point.

My current goals:
1.  Keep them alive
2.  Next month on a warmish day, swap the brood boxes after a good inspection (with a mentor), add the queen extractor, and another super on top.
3.  Start supplemental feeding.
4.  Prepare for hive #2 and order bees/queen package.

Enjoying the time I've have to read up on beekeeping.  Still learning though.  Feel free to give me your thoughts; any and all advice appreciated and taken into consideration.  :)

Keri Mae
Kingston, WA
Proverbs 24:13   My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste...

Offline VolunteerK9

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #1 on: January 16, 2011, 06:39:31 PM »
I think you may be a little early on adding supers right now and I wouldnt put on a honey super when I'm feeding syrup. Just be careful on any extensive hive checks this time of the year. Temps are still way too cool to be in there for long.

Offline iddee

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2011, 06:52:02 PM »
Remove the sugar water if you don't plan to start feeding until next month. The worst mistake you can make is to feed sugar water, then stop. You can start now, or next month, but once you start, you have to feed them until flowers bloom.
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline Jim 134

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #3 on: January 16, 2011, 07:01:47 PM »
My current goals:
1.  Keep them alive
2.  Next month on a warmish day, swap the brood boxes after a good inspection (with a mentor), add the queen extractor, and another super on top.
3.  Start supplemental feeding.
4.  Prepare for hive #2 and order bees/queen package


   :?  Put super on top bee for you feed  :?  :roll: Are you making bees or honey  :?


     BEE HAPPY Jim 134 :)
"Tell me and I'll forget,show me and I may  remember,involve me and I'll understand"
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"The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways."
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Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA. http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/

Offline Brian D. Bray

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #4 on: January 16, 2011, 07:30:36 PM »
Keri Mae,

In our area it is not uncommon to see bees flying at 40 degrees or even less if Carnolian or Russian--the lowest temp I've seen bees fly and bring back pollen is 30 F.
If you want to feed syrup in cold temps the day needs to be sunny, a little cloudy is okay, and the syrup must be warm when placed in/near the hive.  Bess will stop taking syrup once it reaches ambient temperature or 50 F whichever is greater.
I would caution about feeding a pollen patty to early as an influx of pollen can generate brood production and although this is desirable in late February or early March it is not desired in January.  Even in February and March there is a very high possibility of the bees going into heavy brood production with the possibility of weather that can still have extended periods of sub-freezing or un-interrupted rains that can cause the hive to die of starvation due to committing to much of it's food stores into brood production when such weather hits.  In our area it is just as likely to lose beehives this way as with CCD.

This time of year it is best to feed either dry sugar or fondant if feeding is determined to be necessary.

Also, contrary to popular belief the cluster in the hive does not move once established.  It will almost always be located at the top of the brood chamber and towards the side of the hive that recieves the most sunshine/warmth.  During days with little wind or sunny the bees will break cluster to gather honey from the far reaches of the hive and bring it back and deposit it within the combs within the cluster.  While some bees take cleansing flights others are moving stores.
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Offline Kerimae

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #5 on: January 16, 2011, 07:35:46 PM »
oh boy.  Sounds like I need to go back out and:

1. remove super
2. remove pollen patty
and
3. remove sugar syrup

Then am I good? :-\
Proverbs 24:13   My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste...

Offline iddee

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2011, 07:39:30 PM »
Then you should be good to go.
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline AllenF

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #7 on: January 16, 2011, 07:43:27 PM »
I know this was said earlier, but if they are low on food, feed dry sugar to keep the alive until early spring when you can give them syrup and patties.

Offline Kerimae

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #8 on: January 16, 2011, 08:00:22 PM »
Thank you.  I got the syrup out but it's getting cooler and dark already, so I'll hopefully get out tomorrow to take off the super/patty.  Thanks for not beating me over the head.  Now I'm quietly and sheepfully retreating to spend the rest of winter finishing up my reading.  :)

Keri Mae
Proverbs 24:13   My son, eat thou honey, because it is good; and the honeycomb, which is sweet to thy taste...

Offline iddee

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #9 on: January 16, 2011, 08:04:38 PM »
Never retreat. We didn't know either until we asked. That's what this forum is for.
"Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me . . . Anything can happen, child. Anything can be"

*Shel Silverstein*

Offline Acebird

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2011, 08:17:58 PM »
Quote
Also, contrary to popular belief the cluster in the hive does not move once established.  It will almost always be located at the top of the brood chamber and towards the side of the hive that recieves the most sunshine/warmth.

Interesting... so in your opinion tracking movements and sticking push pins in the the box to see where they are going is all nonsense?
Never thought I would do it!

Offline Jim 134

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Re: NewNewBee winter peekaboo
« Reply #11 on: January 16, 2011, 10:07:59 PM »
Remove the sugar water if you don't plan to start feeding until next month. The worst mistake you can make is to feed sugar water, then stop. You can start now, or next month, but once you start, you have to feed them until flowers bloom.

 The same can be for pollen patty dry sugar and so on


       BEE HAPPY Jim 134 :)
"Tell me and I'll forget,show me and I may  remember,involve me and I'll understand"
        Chinese Proverb

"The farmer is the only man in our economy who buys everything at retail, sells everything at wholesale, and pays the freight both ways."
 John F. Kennedy
Franklin County Beekeepers Association MA. http://www.franklinmabeekeepers.org/

 

anything