Before you start your hive autopsies, you should first take some time to list how you prepared your hives in the fall for winter. After each autopsy you can review that configuration and determine how you can make it better for the following year.
Here are my 8 hives that entered the new year alive.
Each was prepared for winter as follows:
As an experiment (ok, I’m an engineer and engineers love experiments), I overwintered 3 Nucs to see if I would have greater success in overwintering smaller colonies.
The five hives marked in red died before we reached April; 3/5ths of the 10-frame hives and 2/3rds of the Nucs. (60% and 67%, respectively). So not much of a difference.
Now that I have listed how each hive was winterized, I can easily review the autopsy results as I perform each autopsy and determine how I can improve on my overwintering plan for the coming winter.
As you can see from my overwintering plan for this last year, I do not wrap, how about you? Do you find that wrapping helps your hives survive the winter?
~ May all your wandering take you to many wonderful places!