Can I Leave A Honey Super On Over Winter?

What to Do With a Honey Super in the Winter

When you make a purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases..

There are several factors to consider when storing your honey super during the winter. One factor is the temperature of the room. The honey super frames may fit on a middle shelf of your refrigerator, but the frame should not be kept out in warm temperatures. Otherwise, it is susceptible to infestation by wax moth and beetles. To avoid this problem, you may want to purchase a chest freezer.

Explain what to do with a honey super in the winter

Storage of honey supers in the winter

It is possible to store empty honey frames or supers in the winter. If your bees have finished with their work and you do not want to lose any more honey, you should store your frames in a dry place. You can store them in an outbuilding or cellar. If you have a small number of supers, you can use the freezer method. Before storing your frames, you should thaw them first in a secure place.

The number of supers you should store in the winter depends on your climate and the health of your hive. However, in the Northern U.S., you should leave one full-depth super, weighing approximately 80 to 90 pounds. For other climates, you should leave three or four full-depth supers in the winter. If your hives are strong enough to withstand a cold winter, you may opt to store the supers in plastic.

When it comes to storing frames, the best way to store them is to use a chest freezer. This freezer will accommodate up to 28 frames, while a refrigerator freezer will hold only two or three. Keeping frames in the freezer allows the crystallization process to begin slowly, so you can sell more liquid honey during the winter. Once you have finished uncapping the frames, you can store them in a safe location until the spring when you want to resell them.

The amount of honey you store in your supers depends on your area and climate. If you live in a colder climate, you should store ninety pounds of honey while in a warmer one, you should store sixty to seventy pounds of honey. You should place the honey stores near the brood nest at the sides and above. This is similar to how you store your frames in the summer. You should make sure that the honey stores do not take up much space in the winter.

Methods for removing queen excluders from honey supers

In July and August, beekeepers should remove the queen excluder from the honey super, allowing the hive’s queen to reach the top and stay warm during the cold winter months. New beekeepers sometimes forget to do this, resulting in the death of the queen by freeze-out in early spring. Removing the queen excluder also allows for easier disease checks, and it can save the bees from swarming.

Before you remove the queen excluder from the honey super, you should also check for gaps on the top part. If there are any gaps, you should scrape them off with a hive tool. If the excluders are flat, you can freeze them overnight to release the propolis, which can be used for tinctures. If the excluder is still attached to the bottom of the honey super, you can twist the bottom part in a circular motion to loosen it. Another trick is to insert a finger into the middle of the excluder, and twist the top and bottom of the super in a circular motion.

After the last nectar flow, remove the queen excluder from the honey super. This will force the queen to move to the top of the super and start foraging. Honey will be collected in the top box in late fall, but the bottom one will need more manipulation and is more difficult. Regardless of the method used, beekeepers should always be careful to remove queen excluders from honey supers during the winter.

When temperatures in the U.S. and Australia fall below normal, beekeepers should remove the honey supers. Bees will build clusters to conserve heat. Empty space in the hive makes the internal temperature of the hive difficult to maintain. In addition, cold air kills the brood and queen. As a result, beekeepers should remove queen excluders in their honey supers only when they have 80% or more of the honey capped.

Effects of top- or bottom-supering on honey storage

There is no definitive answer to the question of top or bottom-supering. A study done by Keith Delaplane and Jennifer Berry, both professors of entomology at the University of Georgia, found that top-supering increased honey yield slightly, while bottom-supering decreased it. The researchers studied honey yield in three apiaries, each with ten hives, during two distinct nectar flows. They found that bottom-supering yielded hives produced slightly more honey, but the difference was not statistically significant. To confirm these findings, larger scale experiments are required.

The study found no significant difference in honey yield, but there were differences in honey storage between top and bottom-supered hives. Although the effects of top or bottom-supering are subtle, they may have an impact on the quantity of honey stored in the winter. However, beekeepers should consider the seasonal changes in their region when supering. Honey harvested during the first season is often less sweet, and the best time to top-super is when the nectar flow is high and the honey is heavy.

Bee behaviour during a swarm

When honeybees swarm in the winter, they are forced to cluster tightly together. They have to maintain a temperature of 93 degrees Fahrenheit, so they collect water inside their cluster and spread it out. Air circulation within the cluster causes the water to evaporate. Bees gather more water than they need to survive the cold, so they need to shiver in order to maintain a high body temperature.

This is called an after-swarm, and it typically comprises about half of the original colony. The swarm can be as large as 25,000 bees, or as small as six,250 or three,125 bees. However, smaller numbers have a lower chance of surviving, so bees will attach themselves to a nearby tree. While the swarm will assemble on a tree, they will usually attach themselves to a sheltered location nearby.

The swarm’s temperature regulation has a complex role. The temperature of the ambient air can affect the temperature of the colony, so the swarms regulate their collective temperature. When the temperature drops below 18 degrees Celsius, the clusters begin to contract. This reduces the surface area for heat loss, and also decreases internal convection currents. Once the temperature drops below fourteen degrees Celsius, the bees begin to develop the outer mantle of motionless bees.

After the swarm has begun, the queen and the worker bees work long hours to gather pollen and nectar to feed the colony. Bees also perform cleaning flights, known as toilet flights, to keep the hive clean and sanitary. They also gather nectar from foragers. During the winter, workers also clean themselves and guard the hive entrance. During the winter, bees also pump their flight muscles to stay warm and protected from the cold temperatures.

Protecting winter bees with honey supers

Bees need food for winter survival, so be sure to harvest your honey as early as autumn. For best results, combine weaker colonies with stronger ones. On average, an Australian hive needs 8 frames and 18kgs of honey each winter. Colder regions may require additional frames or supers to provide adequate feed for the hive. This article will give you tips on protecting your hives from the winter months.

If you can’t afford to replace the entire supers, consider using a fumigant treatment. Two tablespoons of paradichlorobenzene can fumigate up to eight supers or four hive bodies. After fumig, leave the frames of the supers outdoors for a week. You can use these treatments if you know what you’re doing. However, these chemicals are not safe for bees and should be applied with caution.

During the winter, honey bees eat a lot, especially in colder regions. In Montana, for example, a single hive will consume about 60 pounds of honey. You can estimate this figure by observing the hive. In general, a medium super will hold up to 50 pounds of honey. Having an extra super is not going to be a problem for the bees if you add insulation to the space.

Using a mite-control treatment is another option to protect your bees during the winter. Varroa mites can multiply exponentially, and during this time, winter bee colonies are especially vulnerable to them. Infested colonies are more likely to die because they cannot handle the added challenge. They are vulnerable to mites, and mite control is key to ensuring the survival of your bees.

Recent Posts