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Author Topic: Hive body goof-up  (Read 1566 times)
tillie
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« on: April 21, 2006, 05:05:28 PM »

I picked up my first bees in nucs on Saturday and installed them into my two hive bodies on Sunday the 16th.  There were four frames of started brood in each nuc.  I put the four frames in order in the center of each hive.

Goof-up:  I went ahead and put the second hive body on each hive.  So each hive had a bottom hive body with ten frames of foundation, including the four from the nuc and the top hive body had ten frames of foundation and was empty of bees and brood.

I'm in Atlanta where apparently we don't use but one hive body and then use supers.  Also I realize that I wasn't supposed to put the second hive body on until the first had been drawn out.  ARGHHHHH

The bees have been happily doing whatever they are doing in the hives since Sunday.  Although I obviously didn't read enough about hive bodies, I have not disturbed the hives since I installed them on Sunday.

Is it too late to change the configuration?  Should I take off the top hive body from each hive?  If the bees have been building their cluster upward, how do I handle any frames of foundation that have been used by the bees?

Thanks in advance,

Desperate in Atlanta,
Linda T
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Jay
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« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2006, 06:05:49 PM »

No it's not too late. If you go ahead and look in there most likely you will find that they are all clustered on the four frames from the nuc and haven't even touched the foundation in the upper box yet. Just take the upper box off and wait for at least 7 of the 10 frames in the bottom box to be drawn out (7 out of 10 is a general rule of thumb for timing in placing the next box on top) before putting the top box back on. Don't worry, bee happy! Cheesy
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2006, 06:33:13 PM »

Take the second box off and set it on its end behind the hive.  Wait for the bees to leave it (usually takes a few minutes) and then put the box away until they have 8 out of ten of the bottom box drawn.  Then, I'd put another one on.  A good queen can lay a lot more brood than what one deep will hold.
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Michael Bush
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« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2006, 07:25:29 PM »

in Ga, I use 2 configurations, 2 deeps and a deep and medium for brood chambers, a single is not enough whan the hive explodes with bee's in spring.....
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manowar422
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« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2006, 09:26:02 PM »

I made a simular mistake last year embarassed  
After a week the bees moved directly above the center five
frames in the lower box and began drawing comb in the frames above them.
I just moved the drawn frames from the upper into the lower box,
taking out the frames in the lower box, which the bees had not
yet begun to build on. Then removed the upper box.

I always make sure the frames go back in without
changing the direction they were drawn.
I put a dot on the end of each frame (with red permenant marker)
on the back end of the frame. That way I never get them mixed up.
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tillie
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« Reply #5 on: April 23, 2006, 10:02:02 PM »

Thanks for everyone's help.  I took the upper hive body off today with some help from a local beekeeper.  We could see that the bees had already begun drawing comb in the upper hive, but most of the activity was in the lower hive in the four frames that had come from the nuc last week.  

We took the frames out one by one from the upper hive body and when there were lots of bees, we gently shook them into the main hive.  We did exactly what you all recommended and took the upper hive body and set it behind the main hive body.  Within 30 minutes all of the rest of the bees in it had left and returned to the main hive.

I was thrilled to see that my bees in both hives were as busy as bees working to grow their numbers.  My beekeeper helper suggested that in about a week, I should check again and probably at that time add another container.  

I'll probably use a medium super since I'm not the world's strongest woman and I understand a full super can weigh 90 pounds when filled with honey.

Thanks for all the helpful suggestions.   What a great thing to have this forum to come to for help.

Linda T in Atlanta
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amymcg
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« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2006, 05:56:06 AM »

Linda,

Another option is to use a shallow, it's even lighter than a medium when full.
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livetrappingbymatt
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« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2006, 01:42:01 PM »

tilly; in your last post you mentioned using a medium super. i have back problems so this year i will try 8 frame equiptment. a little lighter to carry.
bob
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Finsky
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« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2006, 02:55:17 PM »

If  bees  shoose their place in vast box, they do not stay in center of box. They go against other sidewall. Middle wall would be good to restrict frames to the measure which bees can oppupy. So they need not defend vain area.

Pic from middle wall. Yes, you have summer there....

http://bees.freesuperhost.com/yabbfiles/Attachments/tiny.jpg
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