Temperature and brood inspection?

Discussion in 'Beekeeping 101' started by Intheswamp, Mar 9, 2012.

  1. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp New Member

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    I know it's only been a couple of days since I put the extra medium brood boxes on the hives but I'd like to check them and see if they've put any new was on the foundation. I can get by without checking for new wax but I also need to put some in-hive beetle traps in the hives and refresh the oil in some others. I would like to do a powdered sugar dust, but I think the wind will be too high for that.

    But...

    High temperature tomorrow is supposed to be 70F. I'm figuring I can count on 65 for a period of time. Wind is supposed to be 10-15 miles an hour with gusts to 20mph. Figuring 65F and 12mph wind speed that comes up to a wind chill temperature of around 58F. Would 58F wind chill be ok for going into the brood chamber and inspecting things?

    I guess a question could be... What are some good temperature/weather guidelines for doing a quick look? ...a frame by frame inspection? ????

    Thanks,
    Ed
     
  2. Hog Wild

    Hog Wild New Member

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    I use 55F as a gauge to go into mine, wind/cloud cover does play a factor in how ticked off you actually make them. :grin: I have done quick checks lower than that without incident but unless desperate wait until conditions are more favorable.
     

  3. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp New Member

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    Hmmm, well it might be warm enough then to do an inspection. But, the wind's a wildcard on ticking the ladies off, eh? Ok, sounds like a Mission Impossible disclaimer coming up.... <grin>
     
  4. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    55 and sunny works... 55 windy and/or cloudy with falling temperature then any significant inspection should be very limited. below 60 and without some dire cause or need then removing frames should be avoided.

    for much of what you have described a frame by frame inspection is not really necessary. for the new bee keeper looking at each frame is a part of the educational/experience program but thinking ahead to know yourself when this is or is not essential should also be a part of this education.

    most of what you describe I check by cracking the box and looking in the gap. any varroa treatment is a bit early unless you obtained hives with a severe varroa infestation (in which case they likely would not have made the winter).
     
  5. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp New Member

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    Morning, tec. Yeah, I feel like I'm in that gray area of decision. High temp is supposed to be 71F (updated) and the beginning temp during the time frame I'll be working at 69F and ending temp at 69F. Wind chill with a 15mph wind brings the temp down to a little over 61F (old wind chill index) and a little over 68F (new wind chill index)...I didn't even know we had a new wind chill index...and have had it since 2001!!

    I've checked the little 8-frame nuc I started out with several times and have yet to see any bees with mites. My mentor and his "cross the creek" friend seem to have some wonderful bees. They have a lot of caucasian genes in them. The only treatment they get is powdered sugar dustings several times a year...they have very low mite levels. They keep beetle traps in the hives and the bees are aggressive towards the beetles (not that they can do anything to them but I've seen them tackle and hold the beetles. I was considering the powdered dusting on recommendation of my mentor. He knew I would be adding the medium brood boxes and suggested that I do the dusting then, but the weather wasn't great then, either (WINDY). I don't think there was urgency in his recommendation, though, so later will probably be fine. Besides, with the wind I would think the powdered sugar would be lots of fun!! ;)

    I do want to go in and refresh the beetle jails, I'm thinking of adding an extra one in each hive, too. I found 3-4 beetles since December (when I got the nuc) but so far that has been all. I'll probably just pull off those medium boxes, put some beetle jails in the bottom brood box, peek at a couple of the new frames of foundation for any wax building, and close'er back up.

    Also....I haven't been into the two 10-frame hives since I've had them home...looking forward to it. ;) But, I think I'll wait till after this latest front moves through...probably end of next week. I agree with you, tec, the learning of "when" is just as important as the learning of "how". Thanks for the input!

    Ed
     
  6. tecumseh

    tecumseh New Member

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    it sounds to me like you have things fairly well thought out.

    often times I suspect a new beekeeper hears some suggestion and think it just HAS to be done NOW when LATER will work just fine. trying to juggle or even know what has to be done vs what needs to be done is something that everyone just has to learn on their own... or perhaps via good mentors if they should be so lucky.

    I myself promote 'purposeful' bee keeping. that is when you enter a hive have a/some clearly defined purpose in your mind for doing an inspection or manipulation. then (and without being too distracted by other stuff) attend to this purpose and thereby limit the time of inspection/manipulation to some minimum. at the start of things for most new bee keepers learning is the primary purpose of most inspections.
     
  7. Intheswamp

    Intheswamp New Member

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    Well tec, I've thought some things out...how *well* I've thought them out is debatable.:wink:

    I did go into the hives just a bit yesterday and idea of "purposeful beeking" makes sense, I know what I will be doing next inspection. I'll follow up in the "Ok, the newbee did something...". Kinda keeps things together....

    Ed