Bees not using flow hive

Hi folks I’m having issues with bees seeming to not like flow frames. New to bee keeping however have harvested my first traditional hives 4 weeks ago then added the brood box to the flow hive to transfer my bees over. Added a few new broad frames as I attempted to split the hive(unsuccessful)

Bees are filling those new frames with honey

I have some bees on the outside of flow frames and occasionally sticking there heads in for a look but no honey being deposited.

I removed the flow frame and found loads of tiny German cockroaches making the frames there breeding ground.

What to do now? Will they eventually fill the broad frames with more honey then move up?Concerned about the hygiene of roaches in my honey

Continuing the discussion from Bees not using Flow Frames:

I’ve been impatiently waiting for my bees to start work on the flow hive.

Pretty quickly (within a week) they had sealed up the gaps in the plastic with wax but didn’t draw any comb out from the plastic. My flow frames were above two brood boxes and a honey super and I think the bees were happily using the space they had.

I moved the flow frames down to between the two brood boxes on a suggestion from a friend for a couple of days.

I removed the honey super and harvested it as well as a couple of honey frames from the brood boxes and returned to two deep boxes with conventional frames with the flow frames in a 3rd box on top.

I was in there today (installing a new queen - I must have killed the old one in my frame/box manipulations) and found they had finally started putting nectar (or spilt honey from harvesting) into the flow frames (I put the flow frames in the second week of Jan I think?). Interestingly, they still haven’t drawn out comb on the plastic, they are just using the existing plastic depth to put in the goods.

So, don’t assume they are not using it if they haven’t built out the comb. Look at the gaps and see if there is any pale wax bridging the tiny gaps.

I hate German cockroaches (not that I’m racist!). None in my hive, but plenty in my house.

Me too. 5 days now and while the bees are always in there ,1 or 2 here and there, not one drop of honey has been deposited.
The hive is quite strong. Just wait some more:

when they are ready they’ll move up… when the colony increases with size…

in the mean time, get a beetle trap into the top of your hive… .

in time it’ll be like this :smile:

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There is often a hesitation by the bees to use plastic. Once they use it, they treat it like any other comb. But you want to give them no choice but to use it. Given a choice they will build their own comb.


Why did you put a beetle trap in the top? I’m in California. May I ask where you are? Here is a photo of my hive.

Wow, that hive is high! Will you be on stilts to manage it? :smile: Beautiful hive stand. The guys in the posts just above are all in Australia, where SHB is a big problem. It is coming to California too. Thanks to migratory hives for pollination, it has been seen in the San Joaquin valley according to UC Davis. We are supposed to monitor, and I guess report to your local bee inspector if you find it. I am using a SBB with a Vaseline coated corflute insert - I haven’t found any beetles yet, but I am sure they are coming.

What did you expect? She said she was from California. You should see how high the hives are in Colorado! Here in Texas, we put our hives on the ground.

(sorry, I couldn’t resist)

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I made it 5 feet tall because we have a small back garden. I figured the bees would be more likely not to get bothered by us if they were higher up than most of us. :slight_smile: Hope it works. They are facing south east perfectly here too. Just don’t want an earthquake.

Sounds like you need to get the cockroach issue under control. They may be avoiding it because they don’t want to have to defend those frames from being invaded by the roaches, so they are sticking to the frames closer to the core of the hive. I bet if you clear up your roach issue you will find them more and more on the flow frames. Not to mention that german roaches are awful carriers for disease, they are the last thing you would want in your hive.

Good thing I don’t stereotype Texans :slight_smile:

Most of my stands are 3 1/2" tall. Some of them are 1 1/2" tall… but those eventually sink too deep in the ground… I hate putting supers on with a step ladder but I REALLY hate taking them off with a stepladder.

I would imagine that doing brood inspections on a stepladder is a bit hair-raising too! :anguished: