Location is western New England, USA, USDA Zone 5a.
My hive perished over the winter. Not surprising since I was the lucky winner of 2 swarms in late August (late summer) of last year. I thought that they might not make it because of small population size and that’s what happened. There is capped and uncapped honey in the hive. I estimate that there were maybe 1000 bees in there, but that’s a wild guess.
I am looking for some advice on how to prep for the upcoming season, and to ask your thoughts on a few images, attached below.
First, there is a gray color to some of the cells. Is this OK?
Second, some of the cells, particularly in the uppermost corner frames where the cluster was located, are extremely fragile. They turn to dust when touched. Ideas?
Third, I am adding a second hive, and have two nucs ordered for late April pickup. Since both my upper and lower boxes have several frames each with honey, should I split them between the two hives or just let one hive get the goodies, if the capped cells are OK? Or should I start with all new foundation and frames?
Any answers or other thoughts are appreciated.