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Author Topic: Super Storage  (Read 749 times)
bassman1977
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« on: March 19, 2012, 10:52:45 AM »

Hey everyone, long time no talk.

I know it's real early for this question but it's been on my mind a good bit.

Last year, I stored some supers on top of the inner cover of one of my hives.  Top cover on top of the stored supers.  Now, the bees treat these supers as "outside" of the hive so the queen isn't supposed to go up, which everything was good that way.  I put the supers on the hive like that early last fall as I wanted to ensure that the bees protected the comb from wax moths and storage space for boxes is extremely tight for me right now.  So I decided to leave them on for the winter and see what happens.  Well, my hives are booming now.  I was concerned that having the supers on like that might be detrimental to the hives but not 100% sure.  Now we had a pretty mild winter so maybe that was a factor that the hives did fine.  I'm interested in some thoughts regarding storage in this manner.  Did I get lucky?  See no problem?

Thanks.
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AllenF
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« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2012, 05:35:06 PM »

Do you have small hive beetles?   That would be my biggest worry besides being a heat sink sucking the heat out of the hive through the hand hole. 
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bassman1977
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« Reply #2 on: March 19, 2012, 11:15:35 PM »

My hives have been pretty well contained in regards to shb.  If they got into the supers, I think the cold in those boxes would kill them off.  I could be wrong.  The hole I think would be ok.  Releasing moisture into the supers above.  Prior to this I would crack the top open anyway for this very reason.  I think it would be about the same, if not safer.  Instead of having wind potentially blowing directly into the hive itself, the moisture could escape on its own naturally.  **pondering**

Anyone else want to weigh in?
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indypartridge
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« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2012, 07:27:46 AM »

I've stored supers that way on occasion, and know beekeepers who do it regularly. No ill effects that I've seen.

I've also opened them up in the spring to find that the queen has gone up thru the hole in the inner cover and begun laying in those stored supers!
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beyondthesidewalks
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« Reply #4 on: March 20, 2012, 07:42:11 AM »

If I tried to pull that off in my climate I'm afraid I'd be an SHB and wax moth keeper instead of a beekeeper.  With this past winter being as mild as it was they would have really taken over the supers if I tried that.  Sometimes I wish that I lived a litle further north to take advantage of the cold like y'all but then I snap to my senses.  I could never leave Texas again.
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bassman1977
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« Reply #5 on: March 20, 2012, 08:15:47 AM »

Quote
I've stored supers that way on occasion, and know beekeepers who do it regularly. No ill effects that I've seen.

Good to know that.

Quote
I've also opened them up in the spring to find that the queen has gone up thru the hole in the inner cover and begun laying in those stored supers!

DOH!  Maybe putting screen mesh over the hole would be a solution to that.  Wouldn't have to be anything elaborate. 

Quote
If I tried to pull that off in my climate I'm afraid I'd be an SHB and wax moth keeper instead of a beekeeper.

Wax moths were my main concern when I did this.  However when I put the supers on, it was right after I extracted so I think the bees cleaning up the supers could have kept the wax moths at bay.  Maybe maybe not.  The SHB never really concerned me as they have really not been a problem where my hives are...I attribute that to the amount of sun they get.  Probably 90% of the day they are in direct sunlight.  Back to the wax moths, they are pretty well gonners after the first frost so I am sure that helps also.

Quote
Sometimes I wish that I lived a litle further north to take advantage of the cold like y'all but then I snap to my senses.  I could never leave Texas again.

I feel that way about PA.  I find it hard to see myself leaving.  This place would be my paradise if it weren't for the stupid winters.  But then again...I'd have wax moths in my supers if we didn't have those winters.

Ahh...another thought on the wax moths...I believe they won't attach the comb if the comb never had brood in them.  My comb is good that way.  So maybe  applause
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jajtiii
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« Reply #6 on: March 20, 2012, 11:08:55 PM »

I stored 50 some odd supers (shallows and mediums) in a pole shed over this mild winter. I put them cross-wise on top of one another and elevated 8 inches off of the ground.

Not one problem. I have accidentally left some in there thru April and had a small problem with the moths (SHB are in all of my Nucs nearby - 50 to 200 yards), but that's it.

No moth balls. Nothing. No problems.
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