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Author Topic: Winter Inspection?  (Read 461 times)

Offline Xerox

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Winter Inspection?
« on: January 01, 2020, 04:48:13 pm »
It's a nice 54? today and I want to get into the hives and see if they are laying yet. Can I at this temperature?
3 hives died in 1 year. I need to start with two hives.

Offline CoolBees

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2020, 05:20:45 pm »
I don't get "below freezing" weather, so I would do an inspection.

However, if you get freezing weather, it's not a good idea. The bees have everything sealed up for winter. If you break the seals, it could cause them problems later in colder weather.
You cannot permanently help men by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves - Abraham Lincoln

Offline Xerox

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2020, 05:29:06 pm »
We dont really get below freezing often unless it's a below average year which this year it is not. We get a little cooldown about every three weeks where it gets to or below freezing but it's up in the 40s and 50s the rest of the time. We are having a warm winter.
3 hives died in 1 year. I need to start with two hives.

Offline cao

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2020, 10:13:34 pm »
The upside is you find that they are laying.  The downside is chilled brood and a hive that is not sealed for the rest of the winter.  Remember the center of the brood nest is kept about 93 degrees when they are raising brood.   54 degrees is a long way from that.


Offline van from Arkansas

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2020, 11:31:18 pm »
Xerox, to be on the safe side, use painters tape to seal the seems of the hive body, if you decide to inspect.  That is what I do.  This will eliminate drafts.  Watch for condensation when you open the hive, this is important.
Blessings
Van
I have been around bees a long time, since birth.  I am a hobbyist so my answers often reflect this fact.  I concentrate on genetics, raise my own queens by wet graft, nicot, with natural or II breeding.  I do not sell queens, I will give queens  for free but no shipping.

Offline Xerox

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2020, 12:47:44 am »
Xerox, to be on the safe side, use painters tape to seal the seems of the hive body, if you decide to inspect.  That is what I do.  This will eliminate drafts.  Watch for condensation when you open the hive, this is important.
Blessings
Van

I didnt see any condensation nor any eggs.
3 hives died in 1 year. I need to start with two hives.

Offline Oldbeavo

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #6 on: January 05, 2020, 06:04:57 pm »
when you look at temperature we like about 60F to open a hive. Even though we may get to 60F the weather bureau will give you a "feels like" which take in the chill factor from wind or cloud.
We try to work on the rule of can I be comfortable in my shirt without a jumper/windcheater. If yes then we will open hives.

Offline Michael Bush

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #7 on: January 12, 2020, 06:04:21 pm »
I leave them alone until spring is here.  Breaking the propolis seal is not doing them any favors.
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Offline BAHBEEs

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Re: Winter Inspection?
« Reply #8 on: January 13, 2020, 04:55:50 pm »
Like Michael, I rarely open hives in winter.

That said, week after next, the last week in January, to first week in February I will sometimes add pollen patties to add brooding...but...this year I am thinking of just putting it out available in open feeding avoiding opening the hives.

Barry