My honeybee hives are heavily insulated for winter. On the choice of ventilation versus insulation for bee hives, I have been going with heavy insulation. I have one larger old hive that is going through its third winter now, with its second queen. And I have a smaller hive on its first winter. A friend and I opened both today to inspect.
Both were fed 4 lbs sugar brick and 2 lbs fondant in November. In the smaller hive, the colony is right up at the top next to the sugar and eating lots of it. We were glad to see many active bees, and plenty of sugar left, but we went ahead and added a pound of crystalized honey to the top. They seemed to like that!
The bigger, older hive also ahd a large active cluster of bees, but they were located further down in the hive. The had a box of honey on top of then and most of the sugar still left. We closed them up and them be. They were very active and let us know they didn’t want us bugging them!!! Buzz, buzzz.