I know in a couple of weeks I will have to reduce the size of the hive down to two boxes, so my question is how should I arrange this?
You live on other side of globe but I suppose that wintering is near like in Finland.First,
insulated boxes woud be good in your area. It protects colony in winter and accelerates much spring build up.Second :
not too much sace for winter. Moisture condensates easily in empry places and they get mold. third:
ventilation in winter
It is not sure yet does hive need for winter 2 or 1 box. The winter ball will be as big as brood area in late summer. If you have 12-14 frames brood, hive needs 2 boxes. If brood frames are 8 , one box will be enough.
My hives are still full of brood and queen continues laying. Just now I keep pollen frames in lower box and I know that before autumn bees consume most of store.
I put in the first week of September hives in feeding condition and take the rest honey away.
Rest of brood frames I put in lower box. Winter ball starts there where is last brood. Feeding start a bit brood raising.
On the side of brood in lower box I give white frames. Old frames get mold easily in winter.
On the side of wall it is usefull put a foundation. It helps hive's ventilation.
In upper box from wall I put foundation, empty frame, pollen frames and in the middle 4 empty frames which will be full of food. Against wall pollen will get mold. If pollen is in lower box, bees do not get it in spring from cold box.
So I feed to 2 box 20 kg sugar as syrup. To one box hive I feed as much as it takes during week.
If you feed too early, hive has too much brood and they cannot fill the center of hie.
Is there some sort of order to wintering frames. I just assume its like in the spring?