Author Topic: What Temperature?  (Read 3373 times)

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Offline 40 Acre Bees

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What Temperature?
« on: February 13, 2014, 08:14:06 pm »
Well, we are having one hades of a winter here, and we are worried about one of our hives (feeling real light), and I think we need to feed them some fondant or sugar.  At what temperature would we be safe removing the top cover and adding some feed.  We don't want to kill them with the cold but we don't want them to starve either.  Thanks

Offline iddee

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2014, 08:28:42 pm »
Above 6.1 C., sunny and calm,  for a few seconds just to lay it on and close it back up.

Above 12,8 C. sunny and calm, to look it over before closing.

Above 15.5 C,, sunny and calm, to pull a frame out for a quick look.

Above 21 C., sunny and calm, to inspect the hive thoroughly.

OH, did I mention, choose a day without wind or clouds?  :D

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Offline brooksbeefarm

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2014, 08:32:19 pm »
50F with no wind i would open the lid enough to put feed on, and do it as quick as possible, Maybe even a lower temp. if you think they are out of feed. If there out of feed there going to die anyway. Jack

Offline riverbee

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2014, 08:40:16 pm »
what jack said, and i have shoved feed in at lower temps, you have nothing to lose if you think your bees are starving.

edit and add:  bees are more cold hardy than we think, just don't disturb the cluster
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Offline Perry

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2014, 08:45:09 pm »
Hi folks. Get yourself a shim (1 1/2" spacer) Think of a 1 1/2" super.  :D
Lift off your top cover, immediately place your fondant on top of the inner cover hole, put your spacer around it and then put your cover back on. Make sure to cut an X in the wax paper where it goes over the inner cover hole so the bees can get started. This exposes the bees for only a couple of seconds and doesn't break the propolis seal when it's cold like this.




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Offline tecumseh

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2014, 06:34:16 am »
I typically begin work at about 50 degree F.   don't know why... highly confused as to why Iddee is using C????  sounds very french and very unamerican?

Offline iddee

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #6 on: February 14, 2014, 06:57:10 am »
Because 40 acre bees is in Canada.
“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”
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Offline riverbee

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #7 on: February 14, 2014, 10:30:50 am »
great pictures perry!
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Offline tefer2

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #8 on: February 14, 2014, 11:18:09 am »
We also use a spacer, but ours are 2 inches tall.
We place on top of the brood box, under inner cover in fall.
I was into them yesterday adding more candy bricks. 27F degrees
Just lift inner cover and slide them in. Takes seconds.
I like the fact that you can look into the inner cover hole to see what's left!
Like perry's pics, you can add a shim" NOW" on top of inner cover and add your feed.
We wrap our hives with tar paper, so not worried about propolis seal being broken.

Offline 40 Acre Bees

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #9 on: February 15, 2014, 04:48:32 pm »
Well it wasn't quite as warm as we would have liked, but we moved quick, and did exactly like Perry's pictures, with a 1-1/2 spacer and some fondant over the hole in the inner cover.  We do know that both hives are still alive and hopefully the fondant will give us a  little bit of insurance for this long wild winter.  Our only concern was the amount of moisture on top of the inner cover...   That would put it between the insulation and the inner cover.  Is it normal for us to see this moisture......

Offline LazyBkpr

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #10 on: February 15, 2014, 07:56:24 pm »
My Mentor told me;
   a LITTLE moisture was a GOOD thing, and that the bees will utilize it, but that too much moisture was bad. too much being enough to DRIP. Each Drip will kill bees.  I use 2" foam on the top and have a 1" top entrance for ventilation to try to prevent death by Drippage..

  Was the moisture you saw enough to get to the hole and start dripping?
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Offline barry42001

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #11 on: February 15, 2014, 10:57:48 pm »
wait I'm of the belief that the very best time of day to inspect the colony of bees, at about 7PM, and the temperature of about 60 degrees Fahrenheit, and overcast , a light rain even better....because you see that's when you'll find out if you have a gentle colony of honey bees or not! LOL

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« Last Edit: February 15, 2014, 10:59:42 pm by barry42001 »
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Offline iddee

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #12 on: February 15, 2014, 11:12:34 pm »
You will also find out if 100 stings bother your anatomy. :o
“Listen to the mustn'ts, child. Listen to the don'ts. Listen to the shouldn'ts, the impossibles, the won'ts. Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me... Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”
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Offline barry42001

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #13 on: February 16, 2014, 12:25:02 am »
Details

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Offline Perry

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #14 on: February 16, 2014, 07:38:18 am »
The day I met 40Acrebees (There's 2 of them you know, husband and wife team), it was at a "bee school", a 2 hour brief introduction to beekeeping.
During the latter part, when the host was showing folks through the hives. Mr. 40Acrebees took a couple right to the top of his head. My initial thought was that may be the end of that idea, but to their credit the did not let it deter them for 1 second.
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Offline 40 Acre Bees

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #15 on: February 16, 2014, 08:22:53 am »
You don't have to remind me Perry,  I managed about 5 or six stings since we got our bees but each one was basically my own fault and most likely could have been avoided.   

There was no inspection yesterday just a very quick placement of the fondant and a quick cover up.  The moisture was to the extent that the inner cover was extremely wet but there was no pooling of water.  In reality when you wake up in the morning and it is -17 C and by three in the afternoon it is +9 there is no way you are going to avoid moisture.  As Perry knows we have had some wild temperature swings this winter......

But the good thing is they are still alive :laugh:

Offline Marbees

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #16 on: February 16, 2014, 08:41:50 am »
But the good thing is they are still alive :laugh:
[/quote

Happy for you 40 Acre  :) , hope to get 5 C here next week, so I can put some sugar in my hives
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Offline Bakersdozen

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Re: What Temperature?
« Reply #17 on: February 16, 2014, 10:36:21 am »
Above 6.1 C., sunny and calm,  for a few seconds just to lay it on and close it back up.

Above 12,8 C. sunny and calm, to look it over before closing.

Above 15.5 C,, sunny and calm, to pull a frame out for a quick look.

Above 21 C., sunny and calm, to inspect the hive thoroughly.

OH, did I mention, choose a day without wind or clouds?  :D

Thank you for writing this iddee.  I am mentoring a niece and her husband.  I have to corral his enthusiasm sometimes.  He was concerned about food stores and wanted to open the lid during the coldest of temperatures.  I stopped him, of course, reassuring him that we had done all the proper fall preparations and that we had put emergency fondant in during a warm spell.   I rewrote this is on a Fahrenheit scale and sent it to them.  This will remove all doubt about when and why to open the hive.

Offline 40 Acre Bees

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Re: What Temperature? Ahhhhhh! Yellow Snow
« Reply #18 on: February 22, 2014, 01:37:02 pm »
Nice and warm here in the great white north (8 degrees C), and the girls are cleaning house and making the snow a beautiful yellow......  We didn't think that yellow snow would ever make us happy, but after the winter we have had so far we are   :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: