Thursday, 09 March 2017
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Deadouts with lots of honey. I expect to harvest full frames of honey and save partials and drawn comb for re-establishing future colonies. It is too cold to do anything now. So here are my questions:

1. Can I leave everything in the empty hives until it is warm enough to extract the honey? What precautions should I take - duct tape all the entrances so nothing can get in?

2. The partial frames with honey and pollen that I want to use for new colonies. Can they just stay in the deeps (closed up) into May/June when I can introduce new bees? I'm concerned about ants, and other bugs getting in. What do other people do?
The one big issue maybe moths later on as they like a dark area and as it warms up the
Moths will be out they love brood frames and in a very short time can destroy them.
5 years ago
I have some of the same question. Several of my deadouts have been getting robbed in the past 2 days. The bees that are coming appear to be not fighting (the closest living hives are about 500' away) but I'm just wondering if I should close up the hives after dark or just let them rob (I can see where these would make great bait hives for swarms!).

I do suspect having late season mites in these hives, and think they were robbed out later in the fall -- the populations were low. They didn't put away enough syrup, so they didn't have as much honey as I'd seen earlier in fall. I think they just went into winter weaker than I'd thought, and didn't make the long stretch with no forage before the cold and succumbed.

They died a while ago (discovered during that 50-70 deg spell in early Feb), so I suspect the risk from mites would come from encountering other bees rather than the dead hives; as far as other issues I don't see anything obvious (and there was no brood by fall).
5 years ago
I am faced with the same problem as well. Two dead outs and some full/partial fames of honey. I did take as many frames as I could and placed in my freezer. (It's the top freezer of regular refrigerator) so not much room. With the temperatures cold enough right now I am just buying time before warm weather comes and a decision has to be made. I suspect taping up the hives is not the way to go since it may be impossible to completely seal off entry and it would eliminate ventilation. Right now i can only wait till my new bees arrive and hope for the best. Could really use some experienced advise. John
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