Chrisbarlow wrote: ..sometime I just want to try some thing out for the experience.
Absolutely. The nature of the written word is it does tend to come across as rather definitive and the longer I keep bees the less definitive I feel
. No sooner has any rule been defined than the many “exceptions” become apparent.
Eventually we start to enter the realm of marginal gains. I once sought to find the sweet spot of a broodless period but am coming to the conclusion that in the Southwest at least, any broodless period is probably pretty short. The only way to definitively know without remote sensing might be to go into all hives regularly over a period of weeks. Problem is, I am not convinced all hives would behave the same nor every winter be similar.
So the question might be is making an educated guess around midwinter treatment significantly disadvantaging the bees?
I admit I am not a fan of regularly disturbing frames in winter without good reason, but I am happy to also admit that is partly cultural and personal. I like to give them and me some time off. I don’t think it does a lot of harm going in quickly, but I am not convinced how critical it is to do in this context.
Stepping back, maybe the question is if there turned out to be no broodless period, would I not winter treat at all? If the answer is, yes of course I would, so maybe many beekeepers are taking a bit of a pragmatic punt on the marginal gain of minimal brood over no brood may not be sufficiently critical?