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Author Topic: question about 5 frame nuc progress  (Read 1753 times)
robk23678
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« on: June 25, 2013, 10:20:10 AM »

At the end of May, we traveled 170 miles each way to pick up our first nuc, a 5 frame VSH. Crazy, I know, but I had a difficult time finding anything. Due to rain, it was 3 days before we could move them to the new housing, a single 10 frame deep to start.

Checked on them yesterday, and they had started drawing out frames 6 and 7 in the box. Probably a bit early, but I added the 2nd 10 frame, along with switching to a ventilated inner cover (temps were 86 yesterday and supposed to be higher here today), as I would like to disturb them as little as possible, and had no plans of any honey for us this year, partially due to the lateness of the year getting them, and because I know how long and cold our winters are here

I think they have a good location, right next to a very large lilac bush, and only 100 yards to a large garden, and field, of ours, and a temporary bowl of water until I get to town to pick up a nice yard fountain (spoiled girls).

From what I read, they should probably have the entire 6th frame drawn by now and a good bit of the 7th. However, it has been a bit colder here early on, and we have had a few rainy periods.

I have not found a lot of stuff on progress from 5 frame starts, only on package bees. Should they have more drawn out, or is this about normal?
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« Reply #1 on: June 25, 2013, 10:46:42 AM »

Bees will be bees. Unless there's something externally holding them back, they will build the comb when they feel like it.

I bought a 10 frame box of bees this year as my first hive and was worried about the rate at which they were drawing out comb. Basically nothing for about a month. Then all of a sudden they filled another whole box in about two weeks. Now nothing again. Pretty good weather and certainly a flow.

Again. The first hard lesson I learned. Bees will be bees.
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sawdstmakr
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« Reply #2 on: June 25, 2013, 11:17:07 AM »

It depends on the condition of the bees and how much brood they had. Were all 5 frames filled with capped brood or was there one frame with brood, a frame or 2 of honey/pollen and a couple of empty frames. The latter was what my second nuc was when I bought it.I wondered why the guy I bought it from picked up 3 frames together and then picked up the other 2 and put them in my hive. I was just about ready to take it back 3 weeks later when it finally started to drastically build up. Another problem it that quite often the queen does not survive the trip and they have to replace her which really sets the hive back.
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Finski
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« Reply #3 on: June 25, 2013, 11:33:22 AM »

At the end of May, we traveled 170 miles each way to pick up our first nuc, a 5 frame VSH.

 to the new housing, a single 10 frame deep to start.

Checked on them yesterday, and they had started drawing out frames 6 and 7 in the box. Probably a bit early, but I added the 2nd 10 frame, along with switching to a ventilated inner cover (temps were 86 yesterday and supposed to be higher here today), as I would like to disturb them as little as possible, and had no plans of any honey for us this year, partially due to the lateness of the year getting them, and because I know how long and cold our winters are here



 

It seems that the colony have had too big and cold hive, because it has not been able to develope much after picking.

A space from 5 to 10 frames has been too big jump and the colony growth has went backwards.
 Perhaps part of brood have died.

Now they are drawing  6 and 7 th frames. It is not time to give more space.  So the colony fills only 60% of box and if you give one box more, it fills only 30%. It means that colony must heat up their brood  mucjh when heat escapes to empty 70% room.

That tiny nuc does not need ventilated inner cover.

.Now, you should take backwards.

- Keep it in one box and wait that colony occupy all 10 frames.
- If you have mesh floor, close it.
- entrance 50 mm x 10 mm is enough.
- Insulation onto inner cover..

- If I were you, I would put extra movable wall into the hive box and I would take 3 frames off.
Piece of polystyrene insulation boad is good and easy to do.

- What about food and laying space? How many percent of frames colony had food stores?
- one food frames ( all together) and the rest pollen and brood is good realtion. If you have too much food, take one food frame off.

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JWChesnut
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« Reply #4 on: June 25, 2013, 12:09:31 PM »

Agree totally with Finski. You are giving them way too much space.  Wait for them to fill their box-- when you get nectar in the brood side of the 1st and 10th frame -- then you can add. No need for ventilation unless you see frantic bearding and fanning, which I very much doubt will be the case.  You want ventilation to evaporate nectar to honey -- which you are not going to have this year.  A little hive will not overheat from metabolism, and the extra temperature speeds brood development and general welfare.
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« Reply #5 on: June 25, 2013, 12:25:00 PM »

I agree, let the bees fill out the frames in the brood box before adding another box with frames.
If I see they are leaving the outside frames untouched I move the honey frames to the outside and move the empty frames in.
I believe a lot of times it is a temperature issue.
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Richard Vardaman (capt44)
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« Reply #6 on: June 25, 2013, 01:23:40 PM »

.
To a beginner playing with small hives is difficult.

I have all the time small colonies. They are easy to help over dead line when I take emerging brood frames from big hives.

But one hive is difficult.

 2 weeks ago I had a hive which had one box full of brood. It did went to another box, even if I tried the box under or over.
Then my friend donated one langstroth box swarm bees. During next 24 hours the queen has layed 4 frames in that super what I offered 2 weeks.

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« Last Edit: June 26, 2013, 12:12:31 AM by Finski » Logged

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robk23678
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« Reply #7 on: June 25, 2013, 01:40:53 PM »

It depends on the condition of the bees and how much brood they had. Were all 5 frames filled with capped brood or was there one frame with brood, a frame or 2 of honey/pollen and a couple of empty frames. The latter was what my second nuc was when I bought it.I wondered why the guy I bought it from picked up 3 frames together and then picked up the other 2 and put them in my hive. I was just about ready to take it back 3 weeks later when it finally started to drastically build up. Another problem it that quite often the queen does not survive the trip and they have to replace her which really sets the hive back.
Jim

I'm pretty sure I spotted the queen yesterday when I was inspecting. Definitely she's been there in the past few days as plenty of laying.
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Finski
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« Reply #8 on: June 25, 2013, 02:26:56 PM »

.
The queen is able to lay many fold compared to recent, but all
depends how much bees can nurse brood and keep them warm.

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robk23678
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« Reply #9 on: June 25, 2013, 03:15:30 PM »

OK. I removed the second box and the ventilated inner cover.

« Last Edit: June 25, 2013, 03:49:51 PM by Robo » Logged
sc-bee
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« Reply #10 on: June 25, 2013, 04:46:07 PM »

Definitely not a hive to add another box too at this time. Need to see pictures of frames. You did not mention it but you have been feeding, right?
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robk23678
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« Reply #11 on: June 25, 2013, 05:07:41 PM »

I have pictures of the frames, but am not allowed to post them yet. too low of a post count apparently.

I was feeding them a 1:1, but they stopped taking it after a week.Their entrance is literally 5 feet from a giant lilac bush (and i hate to use the word bush, as it takes up twice as much more space than my gmc suburban).
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« Reply #12 on: June 25, 2013, 05:32:53 PM »

 I started off with 2 nucs this year. I traveled around the same distance to pick them up, around 3 hours each way. I had to transfer the nucs to deep at the place I picked them up at. So there was 5 frames of brood and honey with 3 empty, foundationless frames and an empty feeder for the drive home in each box.
 They stayed in the back of the pick up overnight and got moved to their new home first thing in the morning. When I opened them the next morning. one hive already started building comb on an empty frame. That hive has been building since, they'll be getting their 4th box added this week.
 The other hive wasn't doing much of anything as far as building. They were bring in pollen and nectar , but doing very little building. (I pulled the feeders out after a week and replaced with 2 empty frames)
 When the busy hive was ready for it's first new box, I went ahead and added one to the slower building hive. Naturally, they weren't doing much with it. That nuc came with a broken frame, so after the brood emerged, I cut the comb out and cut it in half to fit into 2 medium frames and added to the boxes. That got them up there and they quickly attached that comb to the frame. I pulled partly drawn frames from the busy hive and put it into the other hive. They build those out as well.
 This week I had a population boom and they went into building mode. All but one frame is drawn and full of honey and they'll be getting their 3rd box this week.
 Basically, no two hives are going to do the same thing. They'll build up when they're ready. Having two hives, I can use one to help the other out a tiny bit. But since that hive is working on building itself up, I don't want to take too much resources from them.
 Keep the drawn frames together. If you do have a frame with no brood, put an undrawn frame between it and the rest. I'm sure you'll soon have more bees than you'll know what to do with.

 Good Luck
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sc-bee
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« Reply #13 on: June 25, 2013, 05:37:21 PM »

I have pictures of the frames, but am not allowed to post them yet. too low of a post count apparently.

I was feeding them a 1:1, but they stopped taking it after a week.Their entrance is literally 5 feet from a giant lilac bush (and i hate to use the word bush, as it takes up twice as much more space than my gmc suburban).

Someone post that one for you. Not sure of count and how long to post pictures. Shoulkd not be two high a count.

Does look like you may have some issues if that colony has been feed.
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robk23678
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« Reply #14 on: June 25, 2013, 05:46:37 PM »

I had to "upload" the picture but it rejected it and said I had to e-mail the link to photos@beemaster.com for it to be added until I had a higher post count. Hope it resolves soon. I'll try to post the frame ones myself to see what happens.
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robk23678
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« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2013, 06:10:01 PM »

Wife took these today:

postimg.org/gallery/a6taf03e/

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robk23678
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« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2013, 10:58:10 PM »

Would it hurt to put the feeder back on? Good idea? Bad idea?
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Finski
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« Reply #17 on: June 26, 2013, 12:11:30 AM »

Would it hurt to put the feeder back on? Good idea? Bad idea?

It really hurts. You should take extra food stores off and not to fill combs with sugar.
They get from nature all food now.

Feeding does not accelerate build up because it depends on
amount of bees.
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« Reply #18 on: June 26, 2013, 12:20:11 AM »

.
When I look your hive picture, I see quite much poo on frames. It is a sign of nosemic hive and it may explains why the colony has not build up after buying.
But cold weathers and too much room is enough to explain the speed too.

Nosema spoils the gut of workers and sick bees are not able to feed larvae. When new bees emerge, they avoid the disease and they start normal grotht of colony.

Old frames are really old and you must renew them when colony grows.

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« Reply #19 on: June 26, 2013, 12:51:02 AM »

I agree with what Mr Finski has said in this thread.  We’ve had a couple of days in the mid 80s here too, but there is rarely a need for a ventilated inner cover in our northerly locations.  You don't have nearly enough bees to add a 2nd box yet.  Don’t feed, there is plenty of nectar around now for the bees.  Your frames are definitely aged.  Keep in mind that it takes 21 days for new bees to be created, so you won’t see a big jump in numbers overnight.  With your clearly older frames, I might be a little worried about a bad varroa infestation if they don’t start building up for you.  The one photo you’ve got posted so far, doesn’t look too bad to me, sans the bronze age frames. Smiley
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« Reply #20 on: June 26, 2013, 07:53:09 AM »

Brood pattern looks nice,  but the old frames are sickening.    Beekeepers that sell nucs with frames like these are a disgrace.   You need to work those frames out as soon as possible and then your hivre will take off.
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robk23678
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« Reply #21 on: June 26, 2013, 09:08:46 AM »

Those 5 frames are the original ones that the nuc came with. Took them out of the nuc and put them in the deep exactly how they were. I had planned on replacing them, but was not sure how, or the best time to do it. Is that something that can be done now or do i have to wait until early spring?
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« Reply #22 on: June 26, 2013, 09:19:32 AM »

Once the other frames start to be drawn and have brood in them,  slowly move those nasty frames to the outside of the box and eventually out of the hive completely.   Or at some point when the hive builds up, you could move them into another hive body away from the queen and once the brood hatches you can remove them. 

Do yourself a favor and in the future never buy nucs from anyone who wants to sell you their old contaminated frames.  Your nice new disease free equipment has been compromised.
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robk23678
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« Reply #23 on: June 26, 2013, 09:45:08 AM »

The nuc was in a plastic coated cardboard box, looked a lot like the wooden ones I've seen pictures of. Not a bad idea as far as money is concerned. My thoughts the day we were moving them from the nuc to the hive, those frames are at least 2 years old. This is all new to us. Chickens and rabbits and such I have plenty of experience in.

The queen in the nuc is a new queen this year, so hopefully she will continue to do good.

I haven't seen any varroa as of yet, and they are VSH, so hopefully it doesn't become a problem. I do have plenty of powdered sugar on hand though.

I have to say I was surprised at how gentle the girls are. I have yet to be stung. Yesterday, when we went out to remove the box and change the cover, it was so uncomfortable I went out in shorts and a t-shirt not even thinking about it. I mow right up to the hive, without them being bothered (we have a cordless electric mower I use around the hive just because, and they weren't bothered by the gas mower being near the hive either). They do seem to like to dive bomb the wife though...
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« Reply #24 on: June 26, 2013, 10:15:34 AM »

The brood pattern in the pix are great.  Note that the center "donut" hole means the first cohort has hatched (just a couple of hundred new bees).  The rule of thumb is a frame of capped brood will cover 3 frames of drawn comb as hatched bees -- I think in practice the ratio is a bit less for me.  You will fill your hive soon, based on the brood that is coming on quickly.

To inspect a thrifty hive like yours, look for bees that are covering the top bars-- Note that your undrawn frames have no cover.  You don't need to lift and disturb the brood to assess the supering need.

Your hive is in a delicate state and you want to minimize the massive disturbance by humans.  The queen has filled the available drawn comb with now capped brood.  You want her to move out to the side and force new laying into your new frames.  When you totally disassemble the hive, the queen retreats to the core brood area for safety.  I believe that it takes a couple of days for the queen to venture out to edges of the brood again.  This sets the hive way back at a critical time -- as the queen restricts her laying to the open donut hole in the center of hatching frames.

It will be supering ready in about 2 weeks based on the brood frames.  My guess is the queen will move up from the core area, laying brood above the hive center in the center frames of the new box.  This will likely give you the opportunity to move the dirty comb outward in the temporarily unutilized bottom box.
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« Reply #25 on: June 26, 2013, 10:18:06 AM »

The nuc was in a plastic coated cardboard box, looked a lot like the wooden ones I've seen pictures of. Not a bad idea as far as money is concerned. My thoughts the day we were moving them from the nuc to the hive, those frames are at least 2 years old. This is all new to us.
The box they came in is not that important,  the condition of the frames and bees is.  You are being very optimistic with 2 years.

Quote
The queen in the nuc is a new queen this year, so hopefully she will continue to do good.

So lets dig a little deeper, I'm wondering what you were sold as a nuc,  based on the condition of the frames they sold you, I wouldn't be surprised with what they consider to be a "nuc".   Was there brood in all stages when you received it?  It could very well be they just pulled 5 frames from a hive and added a mated queen.  In that case,  I would not consider it a nuc,   the workers are not offspring of the queen nor do they have they established the synergy of a cohesive colony.   Basically equivalent to package bees with some comb and brood. A true nuc would look like your hive right now,  brood in all stages (eggs to hatchng)   If the brood was not from her, there is a good chance you had a laps in brood rearing between the old brood and the new brood and suffered a set back similar to what one see with package bees (albeit not a bad since you did have some brood hatching).  With the amount of brood you are showing now, the hive should take off shortly,  once the new queens brood starts to hatch (~3 weeks).

Quote
and they are VSH,

so you hope.


Chances are since it is a new queen this year,  the break in brood is a good varroa deterrent and the first year varroa will not be an issue.   Don't assume just because it is not a problem the first year that they are resistant or your treatment method is successful.   A lot of new beekeepers fall into that trap.   First year is rarely an issue do to forced brood breaks.

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robk23678
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« Reply #26 on: June 26, 2013, 10:46:10 AM »

and they are VSH,

so you hope.


Chances are since it is a new queen this year,  the break in brood is a good varroa deterrent and the first year varroa will not be an issue.   Don't assume just because it is not a problem the first year that they are resistant or your treatment method is successful.   A lot of new beekeepers fall into that trap.   First year is rarely an issue do to forced brood breaks.



I hope I was told correctly, but I am prepared to treat as necessary. One of the other things I would have liked would have been for the queen to be marked. I haven't had much trouble finding her yet, but as the numbers grow... I'm hesitant to try and get the supplies and mark her myself. I know now if I order to get the queen marked.


To rotate those old frames out, would it be wise for me to pull one frame at a time, replace it with a new frame, put an excluder on, then place another box with the old frame in it on top of the excluder? Obviously, making sure the queen is below the excluder. If so, when would be a good time to start this?
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« Reply #27 on: June 26, 2013, 11:11:07 AM »

Do Not over-manipulate.  The core need at present is to let the hive build up. You need to respect the integrity and cohesion of the colony. The potential deleterious effect of old comb is far outweighed by the set back that will result from harassing the colony every time a whim strikes the human owner of the hive.  In my hives, Nosema is not an issue in the summer with sun and free flight, but can affect winter hives.

Novice keeps tend to read about all sorts of exotic manipulation and fail to realize these are skills slowly acquired. The bees are tiny insects and easily damaged.  Don't mark the queen for instance-- the likelihood of damaging her is high, and you have no cushion to fall back on.

I keep reading posts where the keeps have gone through every frame looking for the queen.  Why?  You see brood and eggs, those didn't get there by magic.  It's not like an Easter Egg hunt where you get a prize for finding the golden egg. I cringe when folks hold up frames off the hive, to take pix of their queen.  She can easily drop off, or get a leg broken putting the frame back into the hive. Just let the colony organize and build up.-- when you have a double deep hive rolling -- then you can start pulling frames.  When you have two hives set up, then you can start doing risky things to your queen.
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« Reply #28 on: June 26, 2013, 12:07:31 PM »

I agree with what Mr Finski has said in this thread.  We’ve had a couple of days in the mid 80s here too, but there is rarely a need for a ventilated inner cover in our northerly locations.  You don't have nearly enough bees to add a 2nd box yet.  Don’t feed, there is plenty of nectar around now for the bees.  Your frames are definitely aged.  Keep in mind that it takes 21 days for new bees to be created, so you won’t see a big jump in numbers overnight.  With your clearly older frames, I might be a little worried about a bad varroa infestation if they don’t start building up for you.  The one photo you’ve got posted so far, doesn’t look too bad to me, sans the bronze age frames. Smiley

Blue copy his link in post 15 and paste in address bar to see all pictures.

Finski- I have no experience with nosema in my warm climate at least I don't think. Could you count the pictures from left to right and lead me to one with visible poop. I would like to learn the signs. I have heard of poop on the outside of hive but not on inside frames.
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« Reply #29 on: June 26, 2013, 04:16:36 PM »

[ Could you count the pictures from left to right and lead me to one with visible poop. I would like to learn the signs.

Most of old old frames have feces on the top bar. They are seen clearly in a light colored  frame, in front or others.
It seems too that some have and wax hve been melted over the poo.

Feces or poo are red brown colored blots, and they are varying forms. Some are under melted wax.
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« Reply #30 on: June 26, 2013, 06:30:05 PM »

[ Could you count the pictures from left to right and lead me to one with visible poop. I would like to learn the signs.

Most of old old frames have feces on the top bar. They are seen clearly in a light colored  frame, in front or others.
It seems too that some have and wax hve been melted over the poo.

Feces or poo are red brown colored blots, and they are varying forms. Some are under melted wax.

  huh finski thats not poo-- cheesy--it is propolis -varies in color from a dark green too a reddish hue---
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« Reply #31 on: June 26, 2013, 08:12:13 PM »

[ Could you count the pictures from left to right and lead me to one with visible poop. I would like to learn the signs.

Most of old old frames have feces on the top bar. They are seen clearly in a light colored  frame, in front or others.
It seems too that some have and wax hve been melted over the poo.

Feces or poo are red brown colored blots, and they are varying forms. Some are under melted wax.
ropolis -varies in color from a dark green too a reddish hue---

 grin
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« Reply #32 on: June 27, 2013, 12:47:07 AM »


  huh finski thats not poo-- cheesy--it is propolis -varies in color from a dark green too a reddish hue---


Oh, it was propolis!  Oh dear

Here is more propolis. Allways same color.


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« Reply #33 on: June 27, 2013, 01:17:11 AM »

.
When I look your hive picture, I see quite much poo on frames. It is a sign of Gnostic hive and it may explains why the colony has not build up after buying.
But cold weathers and too much room is enough to explain the speed too.

Nosema spoils the gut of workers and sick bees are not able to feed larvae. When new bees emerge, they avoid the disease and they start normal growth of colony.

Old frames are really old and you must renew them when colony grows.

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.
.


 big difference between the pics you posted and what is going on with the nuc----

 the nuc dose not have nosemea--your pic however is what happens when bees die with a gut full of crap
 in a snow bound environment -pic was sad to look at--one size dose not fit all  
 http://www.thehoneygatherers.com/images3.1/stock/Anglais/10Bee-pollen-propolis/Bee-Pollen-Propolis18.jpg
 
« Last Edit: June 27, 2013, 01:41:14 AM by rdy-b » Logged
Finski
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Location: Finland


« Reply #34 on: June 27, 2013, 03:30:13 AM »

.
We are both  experienced beekeepers, and we do not agrue, what is poo or propolis.
You are nearer to that hive. You must be right. I cannot see sharply to another side of globe.

Very much propolis then on frames. I have never that much on top bar. The frames are surely over 30 years old.
They have molded and flamed many times.
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robk23678
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Location: Northern Wisconsin - near the UP


« Reply #35 on: July 06, 2013, 05:38:11 PM »

So, I went outside today to get other work done, and figured a nice warm day, I'll go peek and see how they have progressed. As soon as I got the outer cover off bees started pouring out. Pulled the inner cover, and more bees boiling over. Gave a peek down at the previously undrawn frames, and every one was at least 70% drawn. Apparently, they've been busy. I put the second deep on, and closed everything back up. I also put a cork in the bottom deep hole, so that they (eventually) will use the upper hole. Looked to me like they were going to need the space in the next few days.

I just wish I had my camera with me to get pictures.

And after going back out 3 hours later, there is a whole bunch of activity at the bottom entrance and within 20 feet of the hive. Maybe I angry them off with the cork, or it could be orientation flights. It's all new to me.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2013, 06:19:10 PM by robk23678 » Logged
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