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Honey frames for Winter bee's

Posted: August 29th, 2016, 6:39 pm
by Alerion
How many frames of honey should I leave the bee's for winter? I'm from Edmonton


Re: Honey frames for Winter bee's

Posted: August 29th, 2016, 8:20 pm
by Jiminycric
Hi Robert!

Since I am also new to beekeeping, I have been told for here in Alberta we need to have at least 60 lbs of honey left in the hive - it's about 10 deep frames full of honey. I understand that if there is 2 deep brood boxes there would be enough in (would have to check to make sure) that there would be enough honey surrounding the brood to make it through the winter.

I am also curious on what the other experienced beeks say about it too, as this will be my first year,


Re: Honey frames for Winter bee's

Posted: August 29th, 2016, 8:29 pm
by Biermann
Hi Robert,

I give you what I do, re-shape that for your area, I am in southern Alberta.

My two brood boxes are untouched (for honey removal), everything else is extracted.

Once the supers are off, I treat with Apivar after I made the Varroa test.

Syrup is fed from early October on until the bees don't take it anymore.

I noticed that the bees in my yard fill the frames nicely with honey and pollen and take only a small amount of syrup, perhaps 2-3 gallons.

Hope this helps, Joerg

Re: Honey frames for Winter bee's

Posted: August 30th, 2016, 7:37 pm
by Countryboy
What kind of honey are you leaving for your bees?

Allen has written before about bees wintering on canola honey. It hardens like concrete, and the bees can't eat it. Bees can actually starve in a hive full of canola honey.

If your frames are of canola honey, (or any other honey which is a poor honey for wintering on) you should extract and feed syrup back to the bees.

Re: Honey frames for Winter bee's

Posted: August 31st, 2016, 10:47 pm
by Alerion
First of all thanks for all the replies,

I don't know how to tell what kind of honey it is.

Some weird things have happened to my hives, both hives about 1 month ago had no brood so I purchased 1 queen and put her one hive after about 6 days of being in the hive I witnessed a massive amount of bee's flying about 50' above the hive, it was incredible how many there were, I went to get my cell phone to take a picture and then they were gone. The hive that received the queen had little to no brood in it but I do see 1 queen cell with larvae in it. the hive that didn't get the queen had perfect brood in it. These hive are side by side 3 inches apart maybe the queen went back to the other hive or back and forth. I really don't understand what has happened. The hive with the queen cell still has plenty of bees though I have never seen any brood in at since I split this hive from the beside it.

Now, I found swarm about 100 feet away and put it in a box and it is doing well after 3 weeks.

Should combined this swarm with queen less hive, do I have to relocate the hive if I do?

Should wait until winter to combined the hives?

When Should I reduce the hive down to 2 boxes?

I'm have no experience accept for starting with the first hive and splitting it and didn't get it right. I have never seen a queen in any of the hives except for the one I purchased in a cage.