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Author Topic: How far along should a new hive be?  (Read 595 times)
GSF
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« on: June 24, 2013, 09:21:46 PM »

Last Saturday was two weeks since I got my 3 lb package bees. I have them in an 8 frame deep. They have been pretty busy in and out and drinking plenty of sugar water. It seems like I remember reading that a queen can lay a thousand eggs a day. With that in mind and also being afraid that it may have got overcrowded in there I opened up the hive to take a look. I looked last week and saw a frame of brood, now I have seen a frame or two of capped brood, "some" brood, a couple of partial frames with a little honey a couple of frames with honey - I guess. In the brood I see some honey, something that looks like pollen. Some brood looks like it has clear honey, some looks like it has dark honey. I took pictures so I could study them. Unfortunately I didn't get good angles. I was holding the frame in one hand and trying to take a picture with the other. I did see the ol fat queen. She was much bigger than I saw her last time.

So what should I have saw besides the 5 hive beetles I squashed? 2 weeks old and I've already got hive beetles. I also saw what appeared to be a queen cell towards the bottom of a frame and overall about a half dozen drone cells
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John Wayne
iddee
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« Reply #1 on: June 24, 2013, 09:59:58 PM »

Sounds like all is well. The first new bees will begin coming out 3 weeks after she started laying. Until then, there are fewer bees daily. They should have plenty of room in a single 8 frame deep for the first 3 to 4 weeks.
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Steel Tiger
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« Reply #2 on: June 24, 2013, 10:42:02 PM »

They seem to be doing alright.  As the new brood emerges, you should be ready to add another box in 2 or 3 weeks.
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duryeafarms
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« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2013, 12:23:23 AM »

The clear honey you mentioned isn't nectar, it's sugar syrup they have stored. Keep the space afforded to your bees as limited as practical. They can manage some beetles if the space isn't too much for them to patrol.
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GSF
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« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2013, 05:32:36 AM »

I guess I was expecting to have the bees crawl to the top, with frames full of brood/honey, and with sorrowful eyes looking back and forth between me and a new super.

I didn't put the new super on because there was still plenty of space. At least a whole frame and two or three sides of frames didn't have anything on it. I turn the frame around that had the queen on it exposing her to a vacant side of a frame, plus I moved an empty frame over one towards the middle.

I appreciate the comments. As with everything, you can read and read but hands on and experience can't be beat.
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blanc
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« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2013, 04:07:10 PM »

The thing you have to realize is that you will be building a hive this year to reap sweet rewards next year. If you were able to get an earlier start you may have been able to get some fall honey but not likely. I started last spring and harvested my first honey yesterday after many losses from hurricanes to poisoned bees but finally got some sweet stuff flowing  grin The most important thing is having a strong hive and educating yourself to minimize losses. Happy Bee Keeping!!!
Blanc
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« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2013, 08:23:58 PM »

If you have hive beetles don't rush to add the second box until actual bees cover most of the frames in the first box.Giving too much room to the bees can end in disaster if they can't keep the beetles cornered.
If you have frames undrawn it's because the bees have not needed more room yet. They will only draw if they need more brood nest or nectar storage.
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GSF
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« Reply #7 on: June 26, 2013, 05:26:03 PM »

Thanks everyone for the info.

When the day comes to add another super should it go on the top or the bottom? Seems like I've read both ways.
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John Wayne
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« Reply #8 on: June 26, 2013, 05:37:30 PM »

I say right above the brood boxes, if you want to call that the top of them, then ok, if you want to call it the bottom of the other supers then ok, too. If you want to leave one super that is filled on top of the brood boxes as a honey barrier, then thats ok also, and not a bad idea. I would not say to put it on the pure top while you are stacking and keeping supers, but I have heard others do that, and then have top entrances /etc.
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GSF
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« Reply #9 on: June 26, 2013, 09:18:00 PM »

I've should have been more specific. Right now I only have one super, it's for brood. The next super I add will also be for brood. I wasn't sure if it really mattered if it was on top or on bottom. Thanks again.
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John Wayne
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« Reply #10 on: June 26, 2013, 11:28:41 PM »

ahh...I call a super something that is idealistically desired to hold honey, ie a honey super and that which is preferred for brood, a brood box. so when you mentioned super I had thought you already had your second brood chamber, and were now about to add a box to accumulate honey.

I like to move my brood down personally, ie put the box under the first one when starting a hive, but different people do it different ways, like everything else in beekeeping, haha. some people also go with a deep and two mediums and keep the deep in the middle and the mediums on the top and bottom and then switch them. some go with just three mediums, or two deeps, and some go with jumbo's (I do deeps and jumbo's personally)

So in short, either way is fine, but I go under. and only after both your brood chambers are full then you add a honey super...when that is full, or close then my last response applies.
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Steel Tiger
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« Reply #11 on: June 27, 2013, 11:06:21 PM »

ahh...I call a super something that is idealistically desired to hold honey, ie a honey super and that which is preferred for brood, a brood box. so when you mentioned super I had thought you already had your second brood chamber, and were now about to add a box to accumulate honey.

I like to move my brood down personally, ie put the box under the first one when starting a hive, but different people do it different ways, like everything else in beekeeping, haha. some people also go with a deep and two mediums and keep the deep in the middle and the mediums on the top and bottom and then switch them. some go with just three mediums, or two deeps, and some go with jumbo's (I do deeps and jumbo's personally)

So in short, either way is fine, but I go under. and only after both your brood chambers are full then you add a honey super...when that is full, or close then my last response applies.
One of the problems I'm having is, I placed a box on top of the brood, they drawn out the comb and filled it with honey. I added a second box on top and pulled up frames from the middle box, they drawn out the empty frames and filled them with honey. The next sunny day I'm planning on putting a box under the brood and another either on the very top or on top of the brood. I'll pull frames out of the honey boxes and put two frames in each empty. The honey flow is strong right now and I don't want to disrupt them...but the queen honey bound and only laying in 1 box.
 I'm hoping that by putting an empty under, they'll expand the brood nest down and not just fill it with honey.
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