Winter preparation for some off my Bees.

My bees at around 1600m near Tortoles have had a tough summer.   Although there is abundant bloom in spring, the southern part of the valley is very dry and there seems little forage for July and August.  One of my best looking hives in spring, which I expected to reach 3 Warre boxes had almost no honey reserves a few weeks back.  Many of my hives in this location have had to eat through their spring crop for survival.

Although I am very much against feeding sugar solution to bees (mainly in the case of taking too much of their honey), in this case I see it as more of a survival thing.  If I don`t feed, they will probably perish over the winter.

A morning of strong winds (unsuitable for paragliding work) gave me the opportunity to rig up some boards to adapt a standard feeding dish.  Four of my hives recieved this, and a fith a bowl beneath with cut twigs to stop the bees drowning.  All were given a 50 percent sugar solution with a good dose of honey for flavour.

Posted: Wednesday, September 17th, 2008 at 20:57 by Steve Ham in Beekeeping.

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4 Responses to “Winter preparation for some off my Bees.”

  1. Pat Rowley Says:

    what is the bee content of the hives, and do they look healthy?

  2. Steve Says:

    yes, they are well populated in general, but a little light on stores. So no harvest from the bees at this altitude, just hope to get them through the winter well so they can have a strong build up in spring to take advantage of the strong spring flows in that area

  3. Norm Says:

    This is a late comment but don’t you have your dearth period in the summer months with the winter being relatively abundant? I am in the Almeria region where the weather is probably quite different.

  4. Steve Ham Says:

    Hi Norm, here in Avila things shut down completely in the winter. We have snow now since late October, and the nights drop to below freezing. The last flow was the Ivy, but that stopped pretty much a few weeks back.

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September 2008