Beekeeping Overwintering (Beekeepers, are your bees prepped!)
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Beekeeping Overwintering (Beekeepers, are your bees prepped!)

This is a discussion on Beekeeping Overwintering (Beekeepers, are your bees prepped!) within the Survival Food Procurement forums, part of the Off-Grid Lifestyle category; Its that time of year, moisture boards placed, wind barriers up, entrance reducers in place, at least 110lbs of stores for each hive, skunk/varmint traps ...

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Thread: Beekeeping Overwintering (Beekeepers, are your bees prepped!)

  1. #1
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    Beekeeping Overwintering (Beekeepers, are your bees prepped!)

    Its that time of year, moisture boards placed, wind barriers up, entrance reducers in place, at least 110lbs of stores for each hive, skunk/varmint traps set, mite treatment already done, inner covers flipped, house paper wrapped, hives back to back done, pollen patties placed and above all, the ladies in the hive have kicked out the drones for the winter (or is in the process).

    That's my preps that are completed for the season. 14 hives going into winter, expecting 30% loss, but will make up with requeening by grafting and splitting in 5-6 months depending on the weather.

    MrsInor, Zed, Kahlan and 3 others like this.

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    You use sugar rock ? for the hives in winter? or???
    I really want one of these!Hidden Content

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    I just got done with open feeding around a few hundred pounds of regular table sugar 1:2 mixture (1 pound water to 2 pounds sugar) to make it thick for them (and to stop rearing brood). Around Jan, I'll start lifting the back of the hive to feel the weight and if low I'll do the mountain camp method opening the top cover, placing a newspaper down, and pouring out dry sugar on top (spraying a little with water). This will also help with condensation on the top cover.
    CWOLDOJAX likes this.

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    So if the shtf what would you use if you did not have sugar?
    rest in peace Corporal Bradley Coy 06/08/92-10/24/14

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    Quote Originally Posted by MrsInor View Post
    So if the shtf what would you use if you did not have sugar?
    LOL, very good question, one I think about often (what if scenarios). I would use honey set back from the bees. Or barter out with cane/beet sugar farmer. I also wouldn't take as much, but I would increase my numbers to provide more honey for human consumption.

    My biggest fear is the varroa mites, but I'm slowly working on natural methods instead of end of the season chemicals. Its going to take awhile to get there, but I'm learning as I go.
    MrsInor, Slippy and FrostKitten like this.

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    Well now I know who to turn to when I am ready to start beekeeping!

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    I was wondering about that,neighbor down the street keep bees,gets pretty cold here.
    TOUGH TIMES DONT LAST,TOUGH PEOPLE DO.

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    Quote Originally Posted by survival View Post
    Its that time of year, moisture boards placed, wind barriers up, entrance reducers in place, at least 110lbs of stores for each hive, skunk/varmint traps set, mite treatment already done, inner covers flipped, house paper wrapped, hives back to back done, pollen patties placed and above all, the ladies in the hive have kicked out the drones for the winter (or is in the process).
    I have a few questions. What are moisture boards and where do you place them? Mine don't seem to consume their pollen patties so I use the sugar water method to feed them during the winter. House wrapped sounds easier than putting the hay bales around them.

    Thanks for all the info.
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    Remain calm, All is well

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    The moisture board is a way to absorb moisture during the winter months from where the bees evaporation rises to the top of the hive. Think of those athletic "wicking" shirts where you sweat and the water is moved from your body to the outside (by evaporation). You can place the wicking (moisture) board between the inner cover and the top cover to release the moisture outside. They run about $5 each from different vendors. However, if you don't have them, take a shim like a small piece of wood and lift the top cover and put between the top cover and inner cover to allow a small ventilation hole to do the same effect. Or, if you place the sugar on the newspaper the moisture will drip on the sugar (caking it) as well.

    Use the pollen patties going into winter (Around 1st of Sept) to increase brood going into winter. Some beekeepers will say not to do this, because its more mouths to feed, but if you have plenty of stores then this shouldn't be an issue and the more bees going into winter means the more bees coming out of winter and to keep the hive warm. Be careful with weak hives because hive beetles will take over if the hive is week and there is pollen patties in the hive. If the sugar water less than 50 degrees, the bees may or may not take it, it all depends on the hive.

    House wrap is easier than hay bales, but again it all depends on the beekeeper. You can scoot the hives together, or stack them on top of each other to conserve heat as well.

    The be frank, the majority of the reason a hive dies in the winter is because of starvation. Humans take too much honey away for themselves or for profit and it affects the bees in the wintertime. At lot of folks say varroa mites, foulbrood, nosema, wax moths, hive beetles are you threats, well they are, but HUMANS are the greatest threat at the same time the greatest help as well (its a bittersweet relationship between man and humans).

    Something to always keep in mind when beekeeping..... One beekeeper will have a different opinion on a method and another beekeeper will have another opinion. Also, they are content and set on their opinions. Keep that in mind when talking to other beekeepers.
    MrsInor and Auntie like this.

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    What kind of a climate do you live in Survival? Does the climate affect how much honey you can take from the bees? I have to believe here in MN where we only have flowers about 6 months per year would be very different than CA.

    (Mrs Inor wants to start keeping bees so we have both been trying to bone up on it.)
    rest in peace Corporal Bradley Coy 06/08/92-10/24/14

    Rest in Peace Sgt Mackie. 10/19/19

 

 
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