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1 or 2 brood boxes? Brisbane, QLD

how-many-brood-boxes

#1

Hiya, I hope everyone’s bees are healthy and doing well. I just wanted to talk about the pros and cons of having 1 brood box and having 2 brood boxes.
My thoughts would be that more bees = more honey and production.

So I was thinking 2 brood boxes would give the bees a big boost…

P.S. I’m in Queensland.


#2

more bees also = more mouths to feed.

I don’t live in Qld but I seem to recall most in Qld only have 1 brood box. In fact, I seem to recall that most people in Aus, unless they’re in alpine or mountain regions of NSW/Vic, typically only have 1 brood box.

If you do a search on this topic (magnifying glass, top right) you will see alot of discussion around pros and cons already. Also, don’t forget that location makes a different to perspective.


#3

Yeah I’ve been doing a bit of researching, and that’s a true point you mentioned… With more bees there are more mouths to feed🤔


#4

Most beehives I have seen around this area, Northern Rivers NSW to QLD have 1 brood box. But some beekeepers like 2 brood boxes.

You could do an experiment and have 1 beehive with 1 brood box, and the 2nd with 2 brood boxes.

But then again even if you had the same setup with 2 beehives, the colonies could be different, with different results.

Here are some of the reasoningss I have heard (I think from memory) :

  • 1 brood box is easier for inspections. Easier to find the queen. Easier lifting. Splitting a brood box when it gets full may prevent swarming.

  • 2 brood boxes make a potentially stronger colony for when there is a honey flow. Extra honey for when there is a dearth (lack of food).


#5

They are good reasons, thanks Faroe😁
I might try both and see which one works best👌🏼


#6

No worries :slight_smile: Feel free to post your photos and story here so we can follow your progress :honeybee: :houses:


#7

I live in the north and I keep 3 brood chambers but only because I’m a lazy beekeeper and don’t feel like having to feed them all of the time. They seem to brood up earlier to take advantage of our March maple flow and give me lots of honey.
Manipulations can be a chore because there is much more equipment to go through to find what I’m looking for:

However, single brood boxes would work as well, I’d just have to keep after them: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YjyNcyVvbEI


#8

I was trying to remember who was doing the 3 brood chambers, and here you are :slight_smile:

Do you have photos and videos? Do you have a Flow Hive? (can’t remember right now, and it’s not listed on your profile)


#9

Hello Olie, When I was out west of Sydney I ran double brood boxes to have the hives warmer in sub zero temperature at night. Now I am on the Sunshine Coast and a much milder winter and more stable climate I run single brood boxes.
A single brood box is much easier to manage and do inspections on, especially if you need to find the queen. Up here you may think that a double brood box would produce twice the number of bees, but that is not the case. To double your bees and honey production the way to go is to run two hives. I can’t think of a single reason up here to run a double brood hive, my bees in fact forage all of the year.:thinking:
Cheers


#10

I would agree totally, from my limited experience.


#11

Don’t under estimate you knowledge Cathie, I enjoy reading you input on the forum.:grinning:
Cheers


#12

Thanks Peter48, I live about 1 hour from the Sunny Coast👍🏼

Also I run 8 frame hives, so i was thinking of running 2 brood boxes with a feeder frame (filled with water so that the bees can keep the hive cool because it get so hot here🥵) Which would mean I only really have 15 frames for the queen to lay in… Not 20👍🏼


#13

Your more than welcome to come up to my apiary for a day and see how I do it with my bees and talk about double brood boxes, their advantages and disadvantages. I had trouble when I moved up here adjusting to single brood boxes but now I see the advantages and wouldn’t run doubles in this climate.
But if you are really set in trying it then you will already have the makings of a split and no more switching of the brood boxes.
Cheers