Master Beekeeping Basics
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Wintering Your Beehives With 3 Simple (But Effective) Steps

5 Lessons Easy

Course Overview

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In this course, you’ll learn how to properly winter your hives without going through a 100-point checklist many beekeeper insist you follow. At the end of the course, you’ll also get access to some free resources we’ve put together.

In this course, you’ll learn how to properly winter your hives without going through a 100-point checklist many beekeeper insist you follow. At the end of the course, you’ll also get access to some free resources we’ve put together.

Losing bees is nothing new to the beekeeping industry. However, what might come as a shock is that even in the best of years,  beekeepers can lose anywhere from 30% to 80% of their bees

According to sources following an on-going study , the lowest reported annual beehive losses in the United States were recorded in 2011-2012. 

That season saw a loss rate of just under 29%

It’s disheartening to think that 29% is the best loss rate for beehives nationwide since the study began in 2006. 

Some of the mortality rate can certainly be attributed to diseases and other similar problems. But one area that is often misunderstood (and therefore still a problem) is properly wintering your beehives .

Losing bees is nothing new to the beekeeping industry. However, what might come as a shock is that even in the best of years,  beekeepers can lose anywhere from 30% to 80% of their bees

According to sources following an on-going study , the lowest reported annual beehive losses in the United States were recorded in 2011-2012. 

That season saw a loss rate of just under 29%

It’s disheartening to think that 29% is the best loss rate for beehives nationwide since the study began in 2006. 

Some of the mortality rate can certainly be attributed to diseases and other similar problems. But one area that is often misunderstood (and therefore still a problem) is properly wintering your beehives .

Why is Wintering Hives So Misunderstood?

Why is Wintering Hives So Misunderstood?

One of the most difficult tasks for beekeepers in colder climates is prepping their beehives for the winter. If you're just getting into beekeeping, you'll learn very quickly how wide the range of beekeeping advice will become. 

Many “experienced” beekeepers will give you a 100-point checklist of things you need to do in order to successfully winter your beehives. These lengthy checklists often include more extreme measures such as setting up expensive insulation around your hive or inserting sophisticated moisture removal devices.  

At Bear Country Bees, our mentality is to simplify the overly complicated beekeeping processes of the past. Contrary to most old-timer beekeepers, our experience has shown that you really only need to live by 3 main principles of wintering your beehives in order to give your bees the best possible chance. 

We refer to these as our 3 Principles of Hive Wintering and they are as follows:

One of the most difficult tasks for beekeepers in colder climates is prepping their beehives for the winter. 

Many “experienced” beekeepers will give you a 100-point checklist of things you need to do in order to successfully winter your beehives. These lengthy checklists often include more extreme measures such as setting up expensive insulation around your hive or inserting sophisticated moisture removal devices.  

At Bear Country Bees, our mentality is to simplify the overly complicated beekeeping processes of the past. Contrary to most old-timer beekeepers, our experience has shown that you really only need to live by 3 main principles of wintering your beehives in order to give your bees the best possible chance. 

We refer to these as our 3 Principles of Hive Wintering and they are as follows:

  • Make sure your hives have enough food
  • Combine weak hives to make strong colonies
  • Protect your hives from the elements

Important Note

Following these guidelines​  does not guarantee the survival of your bees . With any number of other factors involved, you may still lose hives despite taking these measures. 

What these steps will do is give your bees the best possible chance to make it through the winter.

We’ll dive into each of these principles in-depth throughout the course. With the above disclaimer in mind, let’s move to the next lesson and take a look at the first principle.

We’ll dive into each of these principles in-depth throughout the course. With the above disclaimer in mind, let’s move to the next lesson and take a look at the first principle.

We’ll dive into each of these principles in this course,

Learn more

Course Structure

Wintering Beehives: Simplify Your Wintering Checklist

When wintering your hives, you don't need to resort to lengthy checklists and countless hours of effort to keep your hives alive. This lesson will show you how you can greatly increase your hive survival rate with just one hour of work.

Leaving Enough Honey & How It Helps Your Hive Survive

Taking too much honey during extraction is almost a guarantee that your bees won't survive the winter. In this lesson, you'll learn how much honey you should leave for your bees & why it's so important to leave that amount.

Stronger Hives Are Better Than More Hives

It's tempting to want to have more hives rather than focusing on hive strength. However, as a beekeeper, you should always choose the latter. In this lesson, you'll learn why you should strive for stronger colonies and how to tell if you need to combine your hives. 

Protection From the Elements: Giving Your Bees a Bigger Edge

Work smarter rather than harder when protecting your hives from the snow, negative temperatures, and other dangers during the cold months. In this lesson, you'll learn the smart way to protect your bees from these dangers. 

Recap & Resources

Get access to free bonus resources we've put together for you to use as you winter your hive. You can also share them with other beekeepers who have questions or need help with wintering their hives.

 
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