Winterizing Beehives 2013

The 2013 season is at an end and time to start winterizing beehives.  One of the hives is crashing. There are perhaps a few hundred bees and little or no activity on warm days now.  This is one of the Italian packages I got 2 years ago and it did the same thing last year however recovered.  All others showing good activity on any day it goes above 50 degrees.  I was not as diligent as last year and started the fall feeding a bit late.  It was such a good spring and I only took one super of honey from each veteran hive.  So please don’t make the mistake thinking bees would have time in late spring and fall to store any honey in the deeps. The spring flow is fast and furious in Monroe County but after that little or nothing. There was some dark honey in a couple of other hives I went into in September but not enough I think to get them through winter so I did do a late frantic feeding with about a 5+:1 sugar syrup for a few weeks. In total I fed over 100 lbs across 8 hives. Hopefully enough I think. I made 12 – 4lb cakes of bee candy and did get them into all of the hives and changed over to the smaller entrance on a couple of hives but bees got too aggressive with me fumbling to get them lose. I pushed the hives together into 3 groups of 4 and wrapped backs with tar paper and affixed the roofs.  All up to them now…

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