Welcome, Guest

Author Topic: Why would they uncap honey while still filling frames?  (Read 404 times)

Offline Wombat2

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 140
  • Gender: Male
Why would they uncap honey while still filling frames?
« on: February 26, 2014, 03:54:09 AM »
I'm running two half size supers for honey - two weeks ago I took 4 full frames off the top and left 3 that were capped fully on one side but only half capped on the other - I turned these around and brought some part filled up from the second box and added stickies to the second box.

A week later all 20 frames are completely full but only half capped from the top down even the sides that were fully capped are now half capped. I added another box of stickies under them and left them for other week to see what happens.

Any ideas what they are up to?
David L

Offline Lone

  • Queen Bee
  • ****
  • Posts: 1086
  • Gender: Female
Re: Why would they uncap honey while still filling frames?
« Reply #1 on: February 26, 2014, 06:16:41 AM »
G'day Wombat,

At a guess they are on a bit of a flow and are uncapping in order to extend the comb out further.  It's good if they uncap to do this - I've had some frames with 2 layers of cappings.

Or perhaps they are using the ripe honey for feeding purposes. 

Whatever is happening, it is best to have 80-100 % capped for extraction.  They will cap when they are ready and the way your hives are filling up, it sounds like you might have to dust off some honey jars.

I have also noticed in a big flow that they capping won't be done till the flow starts to ease up a bit.  In this case it is handy to add supers as you have done.

Lone

Offline Wombat2

  • House Bee
  • **
  • Posts: 140
  • Gender: Male
Re: Why would they uncap honey while still filling frames?
« Reply #2 on: March 18, 2014, 10:27:23 PM »
We were shown a technique on the beek course to determine if honey is ready to harvest if uncapped.

Take your frame - knock/brush the bees off the hold the frame horizontal with a face down  - give the frame one sudden sharp downward shake  - if any liquid showers to the ground it is not ready - if nothing comes out you can harvest.
David L