Winter Packing (040)

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By Growing Planet Media, LLC, Kim Flottum, and Jim Tew. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

Think about honey bees overwintering in a tree. There’s 4 to 6 inches of insulation, pretty good ventilation, and it’s lined with propolis. Now think of our bees living in a box with less than an inch of wood for protection. We pretty much don’t think of wintering anymore. There’s lots of bees, swarms, we can replace what we lose easily…. well, it was easy, but it’s not so much anymore. Varroa changed that.

We can protect them if we want. Insulated covers, insulated wraps, roofing paper, all manner of things we can get, and all require some level of labor to make work.

Expanded styrene boxes seem to be pretty good. Lots of insulation for both winter cold and summer heat and they use both sides of every frame. They don’t recognize warm winter days though, so there’s that.

In the old days beekeepers went to a lot of trouble to keep their bees alive overwinter and with the new controlled environment buildings, that sort of care is coming back.

Winter protection can mean different things based on where you live – after all, all beekeeping is local. However, no matter where you live, preparing for winter and protecting the colony inside a hive is something our bees need now more than ever.

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We welcome Betterbee as sponsor of today's episode. BetterBee’s mission is to support every beekeeper with excellent customer service, continued education and quality equipment. From their colorful and informative catalog to their support of beekeeper educational activities, including this podcast series, BetterBee truly is Beekeepers Serving Beekeepers. See for yourself at www.betterbee.com

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Honey Bee Obscura is brought to you by Growing Planet Media, LLC, the home of Beekeeping Today Podcast.

Music: Heart & Soul by Gyom, Walking in Paris by Studio Le Bus, original guitar music by Jeffrey Ott

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