Proposal to study the influence of winter hive humidity on honey bee survival in western Massachusetts

Project Overview

Project Type: Farmer
Funds awarded in 2006: $8,455.00
Projected End Date: 12/31/2006
Region: Northeast
State: Massachusetts
Project Leader:

Annual Reports


  • Animals: bees


  • Animal Production: animal protection and health
  • Education and Training: decision support system, extension, on-farm/ranch research
  • Farm Business Management: budgets/cost and returns, community-supported agriculture
  • Production Systems: holistic management
  • Sustainable Communities: partnerships, public participation, urban agriculture, sustainability measures

    Proposal summary:

    The practice of insulating beehives for the winter was once widespread throughout the Northeast. Stress from varroa mite populations and cold temperatures, combined with hive humidity and resulting condensation, can kill many colonies during the winter months. This project will try to determine if insulating colonies will lead to increased hive moisture, resulting in colony death. Outreach will be through presentations at meetings, an informational brochure, and national apicultural publications.

    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.