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Author Topic: makeshift out door bee hut  (Read 872 times)

Offline bee-nuts

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makeshift out door bee hut
« on: November 24, 2011, 01:10:15 AM »
I know for many years people have kept bees indoors over winter.  So I got to thinking, what if you put several hives together, covered them with a tarp, cover that with shaken straw, then let snow do the rest.  Would this spell suicide or be an amazing insulator?  I dont think air would be a problem because im not thinking of wrapping them tightly but more of a tent over the bee hives.  I think if you did this in my area about December first, then removed the mess about march 10th they would stay below freezing yet remain above zero at all times.  They would be without flight for just over 3 months.  No different then a bee shed.

I might try this with a group of four.
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Offline tefer2

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Re: makeshift out door bee hut
« Reply #1 on: November 24, 2011, 09:07:27 AM »
I have heard of beeks placing the hives in a trench and then covering them with pieces of plywood.
Snow and mother earth would then keep them warm.
I made a short 3 sided lean to last year and placed it around six hives huddled together. Every time the wind blew hard that thing would tip over on me. I used several methods of keeping it in place with weight. Nothing short of cement anchors will work to hold that idea down.
My mind seems to wander with all kinds of odd ways to keep bee's alive this time of year !

Offline Vance G

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Re: makeshift out door bee hut
« Reply #2 on: November 30, 2011, 09:38:46 PM »
I used to hope for heavy snow falls and place my hives in a two wide length downwind of a dense hedge.  The ones that got buried several feet deep wintered well.  The hives melted a cavity in the snow a foot or so larger than themselves on the sides and higher on top.  They seemed to breathe ok though it appeared to be a solid sheet of ice surrounding them.  The outsides of the hives were often very brown four months later when the thaw came.  I had top entrances and they did crawl a bit but didn't die outside the hives much.  When the ice roof fell in on a warm day a tornado would appear over the snow banks!  If you can duplicate that, i think it would be better than a tarp and i always fear straw will further attract voles and mice.

Offline JackM

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Re: makeshift out door bee hut
« Reply #3 on: December 01, 2011, 09:51:04 AM »
Kinda got me thinking, why not one of those Harbor Freight garages, greenhouses?  Costco sells a garage sized tent that has survived 4 winters so far, expecting to have to replace the covering any time, but not yet.  Just don't let deep snow sit on it.
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