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Bees not doing honey on the upper frames

Hi everyone !

I’m a newbie on beekepping, just 3 years of experience with my FlowHive which was my first bee keeping experiment.

I’ve had a Flow Hive for a couple of years in the north east of Spain, in Girona.
I have a brood box and the super hive on top.
The first year, in autum-winter, my colony died. Next spring I added a bee colony again and since then they have been living happily for 2 years now.
I guess I’ve local native bees …

My problem is that the bees have never done much on the upper o super box and flow hive panels. At some point of the year some bees work on the super box by adding propolis in the little gaps of the hexagonal FlowHive cells, as they needed to close them before adding honey to them. But at the end autum came again and nothing really was done on the super box besides some propolisation. (sorry english is not my mother language and I’m not sure if I’m expressing myself correctly).

I’ve some doubts …

  • Maybe when my first colony died I should have cleaned the FlowHive panels and super box in some way ?
  • Is it normal that they need to propolize all the FlowHive panels before doing honey on them ?
  • How can I encourage them to do some honey ?
  • What can I do to understand why my bees are not working on the upper super where the FlowHive panels are ?

Now is spring time here, lots of flowers and nice temperatures… Today I’ve seen that some (just a few bees) are on the super body, like inspecting the cells … but still not filling them with nothing …

It’s so frustrating to have been 2 years trying to make a drop of honey and got nothing.
I would appreciate anyone who could give me any hints …

Thanks for your support !! Is there any official FlowHive chat or telephonic customer service where to ask my doubts ?


Can you tell us a little bit about what your weather has been the like the last couple of years and what kind of flowering vegetation you have around you?

Also, do you wait for your colony to build up strong and cover all frames at least 80 percent with bees before putting the Super on?

And why did your first colony die?

What you’ve said sounds normal so there must be something else going on.

Put up some picks of your hive set up and colony strength.

I’ve a suspicion you’ve added the Flow super wY before your colony was ready for it possibly.

P. S. My thoughts and prayers are with you, your family and your nation.

It depend on the reason why the first colony dies as to if you need to clean the hive. If the colony died from starvation is different to them dying from a disease.
A few major things controlling if you get honey, or how much, is the strength of the bee colony and the availability of nectar for them to feed on. To a lesser extent is the number of bees in your hives area competing for the available nectar.
A common mistake made is that the super is put on too early, before the colony needs it and it sounds like you have made that mistake. The brood box should be really busting with bees and at least 80% of all the cells in the brood box containing brood, honey or pollen.
When a Flow Super is added the first thing the bees must do is to seal up the cracks in the cells then if the conditions are right and there is no cells available in the brood box to store honey then they will use the super. When you lift a frame from the brood box is it really covered in bees? A few photos would be a great help.

That may be your problem, not all species of bees are suitable for having in a bee hive and producing excess honey, you really should at least know what species of bee you have then do some research if they are suitable.

I’ve only had a flow hive for about two months now. I read somewhere on these forms to put wax all over the flow hive frames. In fact, Cedar from flow hive recommended it. I haven’t harvested any honey yet, But on my last inspection they were packing the flow hive frames with honey! I had initially set it up where one flow hive I put wax on the frames and the one beside it I did not. The one with wax on the frames got so many bees so much faster that after one week I went ahead and put it on the hive without wax.

Welcome to the forum Randy, I also experimented when I first bought 4 flow hives. Frames with wax were worked on faster, even to the extent one frame I put wax on only one end was ignored on the non waxed end for weeks. It makes sense to put some wax where the bees will use it. You will get a honey yield faster as it takes 6kg of honey eaten by the bees to make 1kg of wax. Anything to help the bees is a plus.