After preparing the colonies in fall for wintering, protection should be provided to the colonies from winter by:
Wintering: In upper Himalayan region, bees experience severe winter from November to March and colonies are lost due to poor wintering. Loss of colonies in winter can be avoided if following four fundamental principles in beekeeping management are kept in mind:
i. Every colony must have a young vigorous prolific queen of superior genetic stock and young worker bees.Honey bees use honey as source of energy for generating heat and to maintain hive temperature of 32-35oC near brood area. For wintering, if insulation to hive is provided, it will help in reduction of store consumption and saving energy of bees. The type of insulation depends upon the climatic zones.
ii. Every colony must be properly protected from extreme climatic conditions through reduced entrance and proper packing.
iii. Every colony must have adequate reserves of honey and pollen.
iv. Every colony must be maintained in “disease free” condition.
Winter packing of hive:
Strong colonies with young bees and good food stores, with proper packing need no care during winter and are opened only in spring.
Last modified: Monday, 16 July 2012, 7:36 AM