I have four colonies at my house in Ohio. All four of them are still alive and have pretty good sized clusters from what I can see. They have burned through their stored honey are are eating the sugar that was mountain camped on top of the frames as emergency feed. Today is March 2 and it seems most people around here think it will be the end of March or early April before we can say they're out of the woods.
I have some questions about late winter feeding:
1. All I have up there right now is granulated sugar, which has been solidified by moisture from the colony over the winter. Should I add some pollen at this point?
2. Do they take the sugar from the top and deposit it in cells below, or do they eat it on site?
3. If the bees are all in the top box since that's closest to the food, on the next warm day, should I take out the bottom boxes (not disturbing the boxes with the cluster in them) and put them on top, maybe consolidating any unused honey from the side frames and putting them over the cluster?
It has been a nasty winter here and I'm pretty satisfied having gotten four colonies this far. With only a few weeks (hopefully) before maples bloom and temps rise enough to liquid feed, I want to do all I can to keep them going. Thank you in advance for your advice.